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Dr. Loretta
Dr. Loretta, Cat Veterinarian
Category: Cat
Satisfied Customers: 28341
Experience:  25 years of experience treating cats in my practice.
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I have recently adopted a 3yr old tom cat, he is very large

Customer Question

I have recently adopted a 3yr old tom cat, he is very large ( black and white). He does not like to be handled too much, although he does like to be given a little affection (on his terms).some times for no apparent reason he hides behind the curtains and we can hear him growling like a dog and he starts to attack himself (quite aggressively) especially his own tail. He is not aggressive towards my other ( female) cat which we've had for twelve years- but she spits at him if he gets too close to her although they are getting along much better as time goes by.
He likes to sleep on the end of our bed, and we give him the freedom of the house and garden, and he can eat whenever he want's (day or night) just like we have always done for all our other cats that we've had through the years.
This 3yr old ( called Monty,which was the name he had when he came to live with us)
Seem's to be in a strange little world of his own, as if he has spent far to long on his own, does,not know what it's like to be in the company of people? Monty won't sit on anyone's lap he likes to sit on the living room table, close to the window ( so that he can growl at nothing it would be funny if it was'nt so sad).
Monty has been microchiped, and neutered by the cat rescue people that we adopted him from, they told us that he had originally been a stray, and had lived with a couple for a while,
But he was sent back to the rehoming centre because the couple could not tolerate his hair around their home (which makes me wonder why they had a pet in the first place!) Monty is very clean, he uses the garden to do his business and loves the freedom that he has with us,
I love my cats, and always have, I gave Monty a home because I had to put one of my old cats to sleep (Oct) which I'd owned for fourteen years.
Submitted: 4 years ago.
Category: Cat
Expert:  Dr. Loretta replied 4 years ago.

Good Morning and welcome. I am Dr. Loretta, a licensed veterinarian and I am happy to answer your question.

It is not unusual for rescue cats to have this odd behavior because they are afraid of just about everything. Since he has chnaged homes a number of times, Monty is confused and afraid. This will take time and patience to help Monty past this.

First take Monty to your vet for an exam. There are medical conditions that can cause such odd behavior and treatment could resolve this. If this is ruled out, then other steps can be taken.

Next, purchase Feliway at the pet store.This is a feline pheromone that acts as a calming agent and will decrease anxiety. Follow the directions on the bottle and use the diffuser in areas that Monty frequents. Then purchase long lasting toys such as a feline kong that will distract him from his fears, The more he tolerates the things he fears, the more used to them he will get...this is Desensitization.

If he is having a hard time, your vet will have medication to help prince through this such as Clomicalm.

This LINK has other enrichment ideas to distract Monty.


Does that make sense to you?

Please let me know if you have ANY other questions. My goal is to give you 100% satisfaction and if you are not yet satisfied, please Reply so I can clarify for you

Sincerely, Dr. Loretta