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Hello -

I am a first time cat owner of Joey, a big Maine Coon/X. I have posted here a few times about problems with him and you professionals have had great advice.
Now for the latest (terrible) adventure -

Joey instisted on going out last Tuesday night. He beat on the door, meowed crazily, and clawed the furniture. So - I gave in and let him out. He was missing until Saturday night. I checked the shelters and walked the neighborhood. Saturday evening, I found him under my neighbor's car, lethargic and covered with cobwebs. I pulled him out and he screamed and growled at me. His long fur was all mangled and matted. I brought him in the house and tried to look under his fur. I found a puncture wound, which I cleaned (with him protesting all the while). He then proceeded to hide under a bed and would not come out.

I took him to a vet yesterday, and came to find out that he had been badly mauled by some large dog. He was X-rayed and part of his body shaved. He has several stitches on both sides, and is on antibiotics and pain medicine. They gave him fluids also because he was badly dehydrated.

This is the third major problem within a month. He is using his nine lives quickly!

Joey was a stray that moved in with me, and always wants to be outdoors. I have a pet door for my dogs which he uses to come and go. My house is very small, but I have a large backyard with grass, shady trees, and comfortable patio furniture that all the animals may use. I would think that Joey would enjoy just staying out there, but he jumps the fence and travels. Does anyone have any suggestions on what I can do to keep him in the backyard? Is there any product to put up on fences so that cats can't climb? I am worried about him catching claws or getting injured.

Joey needs to stay home! Within a month he has killed a poisoned rat, got in a bad cat fight and needed medical attention, and now the dog attack. I feel so bad for him because he is feeling so rotten. Not to mention the over $750 he has cost in vet bills!

Any ideas/suggestions on keeping a cat confined to the backyard? He absolutely will not stay in the house all the time. I have tried and tried.

Evryone has always told me that cats are easier to handle than dogs...not Joey! If I knew how to post a pic I would post one of Joe, so you could see the king of brats in person!
 

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I might have missed your previous posts on here.
But have you tried to harness/leash train him.
Either for walks, or just to keep him safer while out in your back yard?

Have you tried one of those cat walk products, which allows him to be safely enclosed yet outside. Are you able to build an outdoor cat pourch for him? etc.

I know it's not the best idea, but it could be considered if it's worth his life from getting harmed outdoors.

Have you tried speaking with your doctor about using any otc meds or perscription meds on him to calm him down, perhaps decrease his need to wander outside, and limit his want to leave your house?
 

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An outdoor enclosure is your best bet. There is also a product called "cat fence-in" that you add to your own fence that prevents them jumping out. You can find it on the internet, and they sometimes advertise at the back of Cat Fancy.

Cheers,
Dr. Jean
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Thank you, thank you! I just looked up the cat fence-in and sent a link to my boyfriend at work. He will find the stuff. We were trying to figure out what we could put up. We were going to go to Home Depot tonight to wander around for ideas.

I am not familiar with cat enclosures. Joey is such a free spirit that even confining him to the backyard will bother him a lot. He enjoys laying out front and going to visit our next door neighbor while he is tinkering on his cars. He is VERY stong willed.

Another question relating - Joey and my two schnauzers have always been best, best buddies. He cleans their faces and they sleep together. They play WILDLY - rolling around and having a great time. Now he is ignoring them, and I would understand that his trauma caused this. I hope he will get over it. They are distraught that he won't have anything to do with them. I was wondering if his rough-house playing with the dogs helped him some way while he was being attacked. He sure has learned how to wrestle! People who come over love to watch them and are amazed and entertained. The doctor said that Joey's injuries were really severe, and he was really lucky to have survived.
 
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