We need your amazing chicken photos for our 2020 Calendar! Submit your pics HERE!

certified nut job cat

Discussion in 'Other Pets & Livestock' started by chicknmania, Jul 18, 2019.

  1. chicknmania

    chicknmania Crowing

    Jan 26, 2007
    central Ohio
    so.....my son just married a woman that had mental health issues. She has spent at least 8 weeks out of the past six months in a psych ward. I'm sorry to sound so down on her, but it's true. she has "panic attacks" and cannot deal with nomal life. Period.

    So, they just got married last weekend. They just bought a house in the country and have two cats, and two guinea pigs and a dog. My son has a promising career and also has a bright future with the military and has been advancing quickly up the ranks. Both his civilian and military jobs are very stressful and time consuming. His wife has worked a variety of jobs, but currently, she is in the psych ward again and has not worked for several weeks.. My son is unable to return home due to his career committments for a few weeks, so my husband and i are are taking care of the animals (the cats and guinea pigs) and house. because of the recent wedding and all the uproar surrounding it, my son and his wife have spent very little time at home in the past six to eight weeks.

    Their one cat is acting strangely. She will greet us, when we come to do animal/ house care, in a friendly way, and play, but the longer we remain, the stranger she gets. Yesterday, she growled and was very aggressive towards me, mu daughter, and the other cat, for no apparent reason, after wed been there for about 45 minutes. Normally, she is a happy, friendly cat.. Today I went there by myself to care for the animals. The cat was fine, greeted and played with me, followed me around, interacted with the other cat, for about 45minutes. Suddenly, she attacked the other cat...then attacked me, chased me through the house, attacked and bit my leg hard enough to cause considerable...considerable..bleeding..blood soaked all the way through my pants leg! Then attacked viciously the other cat! I left the house and slammed the door, but i am very worried. The aggressive cat hurled herself at the door, then jumped into the window sill and yowled and growled at me through the window!

    Is this a stress thing from being alone or without prolonged human companionship for so long? could it be rabies? My son swears that they have been vaccinated, but I'm not so sure......would rabies last over a period of weeks? Becauae this cat has exhibited aggressive behaviour off and on since mid June. I don't think it's rabies, but I have no experience with it.... so.... In any case, my son is unable to return home for the next few weeks due to his career obligations, and his wife is still in hospital. What am I supposed to do? I'm afraid to go back in to attend to the animals. I'm afraid that the aggressive cat may have seriously injured the other cat, and may seriously injure me if I try to return. WE are expected to have severe heat..in the 90's..over the next few days. Both cats are in the house, with no a/c, as are the guinea pigs.

    I am, understandably, a bit worried about going back in...I DON'T like being used for a ...uh...practice dummy for attack training! Thoughts? I've never experienced a cat acting this way before!!!
    Last edited by a moderator: Jul 18, 2019
    chrissynemetz and ValerieJ like this.
  2. yickenscarf23

    yickenscarf23 Songster

    Oct 24, 2018
    I know nothing about rabies. But I would put it in a carrier and have it checked by a vet asap. And also get yourself to a doctor!
  3. cassie

    cassie Crowing

    Mar 19, 2009
    I think the cat is suffering from stress. Big time. I have no idea what, if anything, you can do about it. See if you can find an animal behaviorist you can consult with. If the animal is dangerous you might have to consider putting it down. There are too many nice cats out there that need homes to put up with one that may send you to the ER. You can find small squirt bottles in the cosmetic section of places like WalMart. I have a few placed around my house to discourage my cat from getting on counters and rushing the door. I suggest you get one and hang it on your belt so you can get at it quickly.
  4. ValerieJ

    ValerieJ Crowing

    Jul 24, 2016
    Washington State
    I agree with Cassie that water spray bottles work wonders with cats. I have had cats all of my adult life and most of my childhood and I just love them. There ae some cats who will get over stimulated and act out and others who react to stress in various ways. Some are cuddly and others are just plain bossy. However, I have never run into the situation you are in and I would say this cat is under extreme duress for some reason. Maybe the heat. Maybe the confinement. Did your son allow the cat outside when he was home?

    I would definitely take the cat to a vet. Sounds like he/she is fine when you first get there. I'm not sure how many animals you have too feed, or how long that takes, but in the meantime, since the cat seems to get out of sorts at 45 min, try leaving in 40. :oops:
  5. chicknmania

    chicknmania Crowing

    Jan 26, 2007
    central Ohio
    You can't test for rabies unless the animal is dead. But i talked to our vet and he ruled out rabies. Said to try Feliway, which is a hormone diffuser, and I also got the spray. I went to my doctor for some antibiotics and he says Feliway works extremely well for stress in his cat. He called it Kitty Prozac. I'm going to see if I can find any 5 Flower, I have some somewhere, and take that too. As well as a couple of squirt guns, a bottle of water to dump on her if i have to, and at least one other person for backup. My doctor said he has no doubt that my son's wife's stress problems are probably being picked up on by her animals. Maybe the Feliway will work on her, too. :cool:
    Last edited: Jul 18, 2019
  6. chicknmania

    chicknmania Crowing

    Jan 26, 2007
    central Ohio
    Yes, he was letting them out under supervision, and said we could, too, but I tried it one time and was too worried they would go somewhere I couldn't follow. So then we tried cat leashes, and that just didn't work at all. However, if she insists on going out today, I may let her, just to see what happens, although, that might make things worse, I don't know....
    I thought about spraying a little bit of Feliway on us too. In any case, I'm wearing my horseback riding half chaps, boots, long pants, socks, and maybe even long sleeves. In this heat. Ugh. :(
  7. Tycine1

    Tycine1 Crowing

    May 26, 2009
    David, Chiriquí, Panama
    I believe it to be a combination of stress, utter boredom, and let's face it... the cat doesn't know you, nor has it seen "mom and dad" since you've been comin' 'round. Leaving a radio on in the house when you're not there should help ease the lack of human companionship somewhat; it's not pets and treats, but it's not a total absence of humanity in the home either. A few new catnip toys might ease some aggression and boredom issues, at least for a few days. If you have the time to just play with the cats, perhaps with a feather tied to a string, it may go a long way in helping you bond, ease their boredom and give them some way to use up all that pent up energy. Not all cats can maintain their sanity if they've got nothing to spend their energy on.
  8. chicknmania

    chicknmania Crowing

    Jan 26, 2007
    central Ohio
    We do play with both cats every day and spend time with them. I have brought them new toys and catnip, treats, everything I can think of. Plus the leash experiment. But most of the new stuff they ignore. They dont have a radio but we do turn the TV on every day and leave it on for them. It will turn itself off eventually though. Today I brought the pheromone diffuser and spray Nd set it up. There were three people there and we stayed for two hours. Cats were ok. Fine. Playing. She did start to growl towards the end but no major d Isplay like yesterday.
    chrissynemetz and ValerieJ like this.
  9. jaxonann

    jaxonann Chirping

    Jul 7, 2019
    Dallas, TX
    1. I am glad to hear your daughter-in-law is seeking the treatment she needs. (I'm a therapist, what can I say)?
    2. I agree that it is a stress reaction to being without consistent human interaction. Did he attack you as you were trying to leave? I may have overlooked that part. I know cats can become a bit overzealous if they are overstimulated and I'm wondering if the alone time was just too much for him.
    3. We once had to put a cat on "Kitty Prozac" as well because he was neurotic and would rip out his fur if left on his own.
    4. The vet may be able to prescribe a light sedative so he doesn't continue to stress himself out.
    5. I'm sorry you are having to deal with this. The last thing you need on your plate is a cranky kitty.
    chrissynemetz and ValerieJ like this.
  10. HenOnAJuneBug

    HenOnAJuneBug Crowing

    May 20, 2015
    I used to take care of my parents' cat when they'd go somewhere for a period of time. Occasionally it would act like it was possessed, staring at the ceiling and making this gawd awful moaning sound. It was really freaky. In retrospect, maybe it missed my parents.
    Last edited: Jul 19, 2019

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by: