domiance and overly aggressive behavior from Midnight to others

This is a place to gain some understanding of cat behavior and to assist people in training their cats and dealing with common behavior problems, regardless of the method(s) used. Keep in mind that you may be receiving advice from other cat owners and lovers...not professionals. If you have a major problem, always seek the advice of a trainer or behaviorist!

Midnight - the House- Panther

Purred: Mon Dec 17, '12 9:06am PST 
hi everyone,
We are having some fairly serious issue with Midnight, our new cat. Midnight was being fostered by us, but we decided to adopt him because a)CK loved him b) he needed a home c)Bella had passed, Midnight is a black cat and we thought he'd be less adoptable and being he was only a year old, seemed a good companion for our CK.

last week however, we became concerned. Midnight needs his nails trimmed, but when we go to trim them, he carries on like a wildcat. He iwll probably have to go to the vet to get them trimmed. He nailed me good.

Then last Friday, he was playing with CK and he drew blood. He got CK on the chest, who then bled on the floor. I was very worried. They were playing-it wasn't deliberate, but it was serious.

There is no real harm done, but Middy seems to be more aggressive than the other foster we have had. He's young, only a year old. We don't want to give up on him, but he has gone after Ruffy, too, and he's gone from being submissive to being a fairly seemingly dominant cat.

We still have the option to put him up for adoption again-and the resuce we work with has been telling us we have to make up our mind. We know this, but we've never given up on a cat in our lives.

The first step is getting his nails trimmed which we wanted to do this morning, but our vet told us since he hadn't been examined there, they couldn't do a nail trim. As he had just been examined elsewhere, and we didn't feel he needed one-just a nail trim-I was upset. We're hoping tomorrow we can bring him to the rescue vet and just have him trim his nails again.

Midnight has been with us a month now.

Has anyone else had similar issues?


Purred: Tue Jan 8, '13 4:18pm PST 
I don't have much to offer about this, but one time when our cat got sick, she had to have an ultrasound, and they put a little plastic muzzle on her for the procedure. Our cat is normally very high energy, and she seemed remarkably docile for being on her back with some stranger pushing on her belly.

Also during that illness, when they drew blood at the vet, they put a fold of a towel over her head while doing the blood draw, and she seemed remarkably calm again.

So when I got home, I searched on cat muzzles, and found them for sale on ebay. I got a medium size muzzle, and she let us put it on her. We just left it on for a sec before taking it off.

Then, this past weekend was nail trim time. We did her front nails, then decided to try the muzzle for the back nails. We've never been able to trim her back nails before because she's a real strong kicker.

This time we put the muzzle on her before trying the back nails, and we got them trimmed no problem. My roommate said that she was much easier to hold when we trimmed her back nails with the muzzle than she was when we trimmed her front nails without it.

We were never worried about her biting us, but maybe having her eyes covered keeps her from acting up so much.

Now I regret ever having taken her to a groomer to do her nails. She really screamed when they were doing her nails. frown

Althea, PAWS

The Special,- Precious, Petite- PrinCESS
Purred: Tue Jan 15, '13 10:58am PST 
My problem's not as serious as yours, as there's been no blood, but it is similar. More than 5 years ago, someone 'dumped' a kitten, about 4 months old, at my barn. I tried to find him another home but couldn't, so Blue became part of the family. He's very energetic at times, and seems to get carried away. Although he'll sometimes bother Mordred, he's slightly smaller than Mordred, so not much happens.

With 7-pound Althea, however, (Blue is 14 pounds), it's a different story. I'm not sure exactly what happens because I've never seen it, but I'll hear Althea scream; when I get there, some of her white fur will be on the floor. I've punished Blue, and, as he's gotten older, things seem to be *somewhat* better - but then it happened again last night. I grabbed him and screamed at him and refused to let him into the bedroom with us. This morning, *after I'd given him his breakfast, which he hadn't touched*, I caught him climbing up to the top of the 6-foot high entertainment center, where Althea eats. As soon as he heard me, he jumped down. I caught him and threw him outside for 3 or 4 hours (it's in the mid 30s and raw but he had access to the basement). I'd have a much happier home if he weren't in it; short of rehoming him (which I would do if I the right home were available), I don't know what to do. I hate the stress on Althea - and wonder what goes on when I'm not home.

On the other hand, they usually sleep in adjoining cuddlers (though I have seen Althea smack at him as he walks by, and I've heard her hiss at him); I've seen them sniff noses - I've even seen her chase him.

If anyone has ideas, I'm willing to consider them.

Midnight - the House- Panther

Purred: Tue Jan 15, '13 1:26pm PST 
Hi Altheas mom,
I spoke with a friend about Midnight who's a feline behaviortist. I did these things which have helped:
1) We got Midnight's claws trimmed. We noticed it helped in the way he is with us and the others.
2) We noticed that Princess beat him up. It appears in the 'order' here, he's actually the low cat on the totem pole and he may be trying to 'stake a claim' with his behavior.

When he gets too 'out there' we put him in the bathroom for a little time out to destress.

When he gets too rough we have a little plant sprayer and we squirt him, sometmes it works, sometimes it doesnt'.

We ahve put down 2 more scratching boards, as this seems to give them an outlet to be able to work out their 'ya yas' when they are in that kind of a jump on one another mood. My friend suggested another cat tree, which we may do-it couldn't hurt.

So far, Middy's been better. He does still bite and claw on occasion, but he seems to have mellowed a bit.

All the best, I hope your little guy works it out with Althea

Snow the- Kitten - DIT#30

Play Hard &- Fast, Nap Hard &- Fast!!
Purred: Thu Jan 17, '13 6:24pm PST 
There are studies that show a cat is actually calmer when its head is covered...kitty