Postings by Buddha

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Cat Health > Stray Cat Needs Medical Attention?
Buddha

1283889
 
 
Purred: Fri Jun 6, '14 5:02pm PST 
This site is an excellent resource for everything dealing with the care and management of feral cats.
http://www.alleycat.org/page.aspx?pid=984
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» There has since been 0 posts. Last posting by Buddha, Jun 6 5:02 pm

Behavior & Training > How to introduce new cat to multiple cat household
Buddha

1283889
 
 
Purred: Mon Mar 31, '14 9:12pm PST 
It usually takes two weeks at least for a cat to adjust to a new home and for the resident cats in that home to accept the new cat. At first keep the cat in only one room or even better, an extra large plastic airline dog crate with its litter, food, water, a toy or two, and something to sleep on. With the crate method, the cat is safe but can see and interact with the resident cat through the door of the crate. If you use the crate method, let the cat out for awhile in one room by itself to exercise and explore. After the cat has been returned to the crate, let your resident cat(s) back into the room where the cat was so they can sniff around and get used to the cat's scent and presence. If you're using the separate room method, move the cat to a different room for awhile and let the resident cat come into the room where the cat previously was and let the cat sniff around. After awhile remove the resident cats and return the cat to the first room. I personally prefer the crate method because it allows for safe socialization between the resident cats and the cat 24/7. If the cat doesn't want to interact or if she's scared, she can hide in the back of the crate and feel safe.

After your new cat shows some confidence (comes to the front of the crate and shows interest in the world beyond the crate door) clip all cats claws and then let the cats meet each other while you supervise. Most likely there will be some hissing on both sides as each will be a bit afraid of the other. Generally then the cats will stay out of each others way at first, then gradually they form a truce or an understanding among them.

I have had a multiple cat household for many years and have integrated many cats successfully into my kitty family over the years with this method. I hope this information will help those of you who have a cat or cats and add a new cat to your family.
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» There has since been 1 post. Last posting by Bella and Bailey , Apr 1 6:12 pm


Kitten Corner > Re-Introducing 3 Month old Kittens - HELP! =]

Buddha

1283889
 
 
Purred: Tue Jul 30, '13 5:03pm PST 
Kittens of that age usually make friends with each other fairly quickly. The hissing and growling is fear behavior and it will diminish. Even though they were littermates, the one who came back from your sister's will smell very different from home and its this different scent that your kitten you kept is reacting to. I wouldn't separate them. I would clip their claws although except for those between two intact adult males, most cat altercations rarely result in anything except noise and sometimes a bit of fur flying. The most I've ever seen happen in a kitten fight is a scratch on the nose and I've seen the same thing happen by accident when two bonded kittens got to playing a little rough. I would feed them a few feet apart and watch to make sure neither steal the other one's food. I would give them catnip and provide them toys. Playing with them with wands etc, is a good idea and may help hasten their bonding.
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» There has since been 1 post. Last posting by Maizy , Jul 31 2:29 pm


Kitten Corner > Playmate for older cat

Buddha

1283889
 
 
Purred: Mon Apr 29, '13 12:34am PST 
A social friendly cat usually will make friends with an outgoing social kitten or adult cat that likes other cats. Be aware though that it's likely to take some time for any newcomer to adjust and some fearful hissing on the part of the newcomer should be expected. Does your dog respond & play with your cat when your cat starts a game with the dog? Do the two ever sleep together? If so, your cat and dog may already be buddies and playmates. Dogs and cats often do become playmates and form strong friendships with each other.
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» There has since been 1 post. Last posting by Zippy, Apr 29 3:58 pm


Behavior & Training > Proper correction techniques for a 16 month old cat

Buddha

1283889
 
 
Purred: Tue Feb 19, '13 2:01am PST 
#1 NEVER discipline a cat for a fear reaction. A fearful cat often will act aggressive in an attempt to defend itself from a perceived threat that it's afraid of. You can't use the same discipline methods with cats that you use with dogs. Holding a cat down in a position that a dog would understand as submissive, is likely to make a cat become even more agitated and may make the cat feel threatened and cause the cat to react with defensive aggression. You can't get physical at all with a fearful cat. Getting physical with a cat will only make the cat's fear and fear-motivated aggression become worse.

Try to figure out what triggers the unwanted behavior in your cat. Some young cats get excited and want to play when you are petting them. A human walking by a young cat hiding under a bed, couch, or other such object will often become the pretend "victim" of a playful ankle attack. Don't encourage your cat to go after your hands or feet, etc. A lot of times people make the mistake of playing rough, hand wrestling, etc with a little kitten, forgetting that the kitten will soon be a grown cat and that all this rough play with human hands is teaching that little kitten to do the same when he or she is grown. Playing with interactive toys, laser lights, etc that the cat can chase is a good way for a human to play with a cat and work off some of the cat's energy.

Some cats get overstimulated and react with biting or swatting if they are petted too much at one time. The key here is to stop petting the cat when you first sense the cat starting to go from relaxed to tense.

Young cats generally get full of energy and need to run it off somehow. Play that seems rough from the human perspective is just energetic fun from a young cat's perspective. Make sure your cat has toys, a cat tree, etc and preferably, another feline playmate to work off some of her youthful energy with. My younger cats tend to save their rough play for each other because its much more fun to race around and jump and play ambush, attack, wrestling, and other such games with a feline playmate who can keep up with you. If one young cat gets too rough, the other one will suddenly stop playing, hiss, smack the offender a couple of times, and the play will stop for awhile. When the play starts up again, the offender generally is careful to play less roughly the next time around.

When you first notice your cat building up agitation when you're interacting with her, take note of what was going on that preceded the cat becoming agitated. If you can figure out what triggers the cat's agitation, you may be able to avoid triggering her agitation in the first place. When your cat starts acting agitated, cease your interaction with the cat, and try redirecting her attention elsewhere by doing something such as throwing a ball. Sometimes simply slowly turning or walking away and ignoring the cat awhile will work too.

With misbehavior such as trying to play attack you, being too pushy about trying to beg or steal food from you, being on or in something that's supposed to be off-limits, etc., hissing at a cat with canned air or air freshener is an excellent way to make your point in a way that a cat understands & that always seems to work. You spray the canned air or air freshener in the general direction of the cat (don't actually spray anything ON the cat-its the strong hissing sound and whoosh of air that gets the cat's respect) and the cat should stop the undesired behavior and probably will leave the room. I also say something such as "knock it off," or "back off," when I hiss at a cat with the canned air or air freshener. After awhile, you will find that the all you need to do is pick up the can and show it to the cat and the cat will stop the misbehavior.

Dealing with pets is in a lot of ways, much like dealing with human toddlers. Avoiding situations that may cause problems, preventing problems from getting started, stopping problems as soon as they start, setting up situations etc that encourage good behavior, etc all are strategies that need to be used when dealing with pets just as they need to be used when dealing with small children. For example, it's much easier and better for both me and the cats for me to keep childproof locks on kitchen cabinet doors that I don't want the cats to open. It takes me seconds to open the childproof lock when I need to get into the cabinet. The cats cannot open the childproof locks. The problem of cats getting into the cabinets that I don't want them getting into, is prevented and prevention is much better and more positive for me and for the cats.

Most cats aren't mentally grown up until they are at least two years old. Before you know it your cat, like most adult cats, will probably become much more sedentary than she was as a kitten. I remember the time 2 to 3 years ago when after several years of having only adult cats, two rescue kittens came my way. At first it was a bit of a shock to me when these two kittens started getting into everything, stalking my ankles from under the bed, chewing on things, knocking over things, and otherwise reminding me of just what life with a kitten is like. I quickly kittenproofed things and otherwise readjusted to life with kittens again. I added a few new playthings such as the long fabric tube and another sisal wrapped carpeted cat tree. The kittens and young cats spend hours playing on and in these things. The adult cats, Buddha especially, also were very helpful in teaching the kittens how to behave.

The more positive ways you use to relate to your young cat and shape her behavior, the more you communicate with her in ways a cat can understand, and the more you remember to give her time to play with interactive toys with you, snuggle with you, and enjoy each other's company, the more you will be able to avoid problems and prevent them from developing and the better the foundation you will create for a good lifetime relationship with your cat. Best of luck to you both!
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» There has since been 0 posts. Last posting by Buddha, Feb 19 2:01 am

Behavior & Training > How can I get my cat to scratch what he's meant to scratch?
Buddha

1283889
 
 
Purred: Fri Feb 8, '13 10:16pm PST 
Cats like to scratch on rough surfaces and objects that are stable and firm and that won't fall over when the cat goes to climb or scratch on it. My cats love the carpeted cat trees with posts that are wrapped with sisal rope. Cats love the texture of the sisal rope wrapping for sharpening their claws. My cats also have a sisal wrapped scratching post about 2 feet tall on a carpeted base that's big enough that the scratching post cannot tip over and they like it too.


A log with the bark left on it that's big enough to not tip over or that's nailed to a sturdy heavy base to stabilize it, or that's put on its side (you can lay it on one or more cheap throw rugs to keep any mess from the bark from getting on your main carpet) makes a cheap scratching post a cat will love. Thoroughly bug spray the log with an insect spray with Nylar or other insect growth inhibitor in it before you bring the log into the house. For many years I had cat trees made of real tree branches with carpeted shelves and houses in the branches until they finally wore out and fell apart and the person who used to make and sell them wasn't around anymore. I've seen one place online that made and sold cat furniture made from real tree branches, their cat furniture was quite expensive.

My cats also love a toy that's called Turbo Scratcher. It's a circular plastic toy that has a ball that runs in a track around the outside edge of it and a piece of coiled rough cardboard approximately 10-12 inches in diameter fits into the center. It comes with some dried catnip to sprinkle on the cardboard to attract the cats. The center cardboard scratching coils are replaceable.
Even without catnip on it, my cats love the turbo scratcher. The only downside is that with the heavy use it gets, the turbo scratcher's cardboard coil has to be frequently replaced.

I covered my couch with a big bedspread to protect it from claws and cat hair and I pinned bathtowels to the sidearms of the couch to protect them. The covering is easy to remove when I have company or when it needs washed.

I also regularly clip the claws of my housecats. Use a clipper made specifically for cat claws, they are much easier to use and do a much better job of quickly and cleanly cutting the claw and not splitting it, etc. Cat claws are easy to clip because it's generally very easy to see where the vein in the cat's claw ends and avoid cutting the claw too short and nicking the vein. Cat's claws are also rather hard and brittle and easier to clip compared to dog and rabbit claws. With a cat who protests too vigorously for me to restrain the cat with my arms while clipping the claws, , I wrap the cat in towel tightly enough that the cat cannot escape, put the paw out that I'm working on, clip the claws, put that paw back inside the towel, repeat the process with another paw. Most cats do not like having their claws clipped and will put up quite a struggle at least the first few times their claws are clipped. Most of my cats usually get wise to the claw clipper and leave the room when they see me pick up the clipper unless I'm sneaky about it.I keep the clipper close by and wait for the cat to come to me, then I grab him, clip his claws, hold him, and pet him until he's calmed down and enjoying the petting, then I release him. After having their claws clipped a few times, many cats will put up much less of a struggle although there are a few who I always have to wrap in a towel when I clip claws. Buddha is the easiest cat to clip claws, he just lays there and lets me clip his claws and get it over with.

Cats whose claws aren't clipped regularly or cats who don't sharpen their claws enough to keep them worn down can easily get into problems with overgrown claws. A cats claws, if not kept clipped or worn down enough, can easily overgrow until they curve all the way around and the end of the claw penetrates the pad and starts growing into the pad. This will make it very difficult for a cat to walk and use its paws, its paws will collect dirt, the condition is painful and open sores in the pad caused by overgrown claws easily become infected.

Kitten claws grow fast and are needle sharp. Cats whose claws are regularly clipped tend to have thicker claws with tips that are more blunt. Front claws generally grow faster than rear claws. I find the claws on the center toes of the rear feet usually grow more quickly than the other toes on the rear feet. The claws on the rear feet usually need clipping less frequently than the claws on the front feet although I find that contrary to what is often claimed, cats don't keep their rear claws worn down that much from being in their litter etc. I generally have to clip at least the tips of the center two toes on each rear foot every two or three times I clip the front claws.

After a few times of clipping claws, claw clipping becomes easier. Having had cats all my life and much practice clipping cat claws, I can clip cat claws so fast the job is over almost before most of my cats have time to even start protesting.
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» There has since been 2 posts. Last posting by BK, Feb 10 1:00 pm


Choosing the Right Cat > Can I get a second kitty?

Buddha

1283889
 
 
Purred: Mon Jan 28, '13 9:58pm PST 
When there's tension in a household between humans as in the case of when you had your cat and her sister, the animals in the household sense the tension and will tend to "act out" as a result. Most dogs and cats are territorial and will react to seeing a strange dog or cat too close to their own territory. You don't say how frequently your cat chased her sister or whether your cat's sister exhibited fear reaction at sight of your cat or whether the chasing ended in an actual fight or what, which makes it hard to evaluate the situation.

As for young kittens, most adult cats tolerate a young kitten but if an older cat acts aggressively toward a young kitten, the adult could hurt the kitten and the kitten could become traumatized with fear, especially if the kitten doesn't have a confident basic temperament to start with.

If you want to get another cat, you might do well getting a confident friendly young neutered male that likes other cats. Confidence and liking other cats are the key elements you most need to have in your new cat. A confident cat is less likely to run from the other cat and a cat who likes other cats is going to be more willing to try to befriend your older cat. You don't want to bring in a new cat who is afraid of other cats. When a cat reacts to another cat with fear aggression and runs from another cat, it encourages the other cat to chase and bully the fearful one. For a cat to chase another or fight with another, it takes two participants. If one cat starts trouble and the other cat ignores it or responds with friendly confidence, the first cat usually will give up because of lack of any fight or flight reaction.

I would start out by putting the new cat in an extra large dog crate with his bed, litter pan, food, and water. In the crate he is safe but the cats can see and hear and smell each other. Your other cat will see and hear and smell him in the crate but she won't be able to hurt him.

Once a day, shut your other cat in the bathroom for awhile and let the new cat out to play in the house, then put your new cat back in the crate and let the older cat out again. This will let him get used to her scent being in the same place he is and let her get used to the idea of his scent being in her territory. Don't get in too big a hurry to try to put the cats together.

When the older cat comes near the new cat in the crate and he comes to the front of the crate to check her out and neither show aggression, then you can try letting them out together.

Before you introduce the cats to each other, make sure both cats claws are clipped. Have some catnip or interactive cat toys on hand so that if your older cat starts getting upset at the presence of the new cat, you can try to distract her. Be patient, it may take a few weeks or even a couple of months to get to the point where the two cats begin to coexist relatively peacefully (even the best of feline friends occasionally have arguments!) The biggest mistake people make when introducing a new cat to a household is being in too big a hurry and giving up too soon.

I've successfully introduced many cats to my feline family over the years using the crate method.
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» There has since been 2 posts. Last posting by , Feb 4 5:13 pm


Grooming > Cat runs away from brush

Buddha

1283889
 
 
Purred: Mon Jan 28, '13 9:14pm PST 
Excessive shedding can be the sign of a number of medical problems too. Have your kitty vet checked to make sure a medical problem isn't causing his excessive shedding.
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» There has since been 0 posts. Last posting by Star, Feb 6 7:09 am


Behavior & Training > I have bit of an odd situation? (litter box)

Buddha

1283889
 
 
Purred: Mon Jan 28, '13 9:08pm PST 
You don't state the age of the kitten. If she's an older kitten, you can put up a baby gate across the bedroom door and across the storage room door so she can get in and out of those rooms freely.

Also sit and hold your kitten and show your toddler how to pet the kitty in a way the kitten likes. Get an interactive cat toy and show your toddler how to play with the kitten using the toy and let them have some play time together with the interactive toy with you supervising them. Young children should always be supervised by an adult when interacting with animals.

Your kitten simply may not have needed to use the litter pan the time you tried shutting her in your room all night. Often a cat sleeping on the bed with humans simply doesn't want to get up and leave its warm spot to go to the litter pan and will hold all night. Remember, in the storage room she was alone. Chances are if you shut your kitten in your bedroom by herself, she will use the litterpan in the bedroom if she has to.
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» There has since been 1 post. Last posting by , Jan 30 7:43 pm

Behavior & Training > How long does it take for Coco to get along with her Sister Molly??
Buddha

1283889
 
 
Purred: Mon Jan 28, '13 8:58pm PST 
From what you say, it sounds like they are merely engaging in some rough play. Cats often do wrestle and play rough with each other. They may even growl in play. When cats are wrestling and playing together, a hiss is one cat's way of telling the other cat the he or she is playing too rough and to knock off the rough play. If a cat truly dislikes another cat, it won't tolerate the other cat anywhere near it. A cat who is fearful of another cat will usually show fear aggression just at the sight of the cat it's afraid of.
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» There has since been 0 posts. Last posting by Buddha, Jan 28 8:58 pm

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