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Showing posts with label feliway. Show all posts
Showing posts with label feliway. Show all posts

Saturday, March 29, 2014

Why am I clawing visitors?

Dear George,
 My name is Golab and I’m a rescue. I was adopted from a shelter by this wonderful family, my new human parents.  I don’t know how old I am but I can’t be too old as I still remember the abuse I suffered before I was rescued. All is too fresh in my memory. 
I love my humans and they love me. I’m happy and at peace as you can see in the photo attached. I’m treated like royalty. I take pride in my humans and my home.  But, I have an issue; for whatever reasons I claw everybody else visiting my humans.
I know my humans are worried and perhaps upset. I don’t know how to tell them that I’m afraid of other people, I don’t trust other people and each time they have company I panic that the company will take them away from me and I’ll be abandoned and abused again. I’m not possessive or jealous, I’m just scared.
George, the problem is that they will have family from overseas visiting soon and they are thinking of renting a flat just for me so they will come daily to visit me and spend time together. This is very generous of them but I don’t want to live in a flat for three months. George, this is a very serious matter and I need your expertise.
Firstly, why do you think I act like this….clawing everybody visiting them?
Secondly, what should I do? Is there anything I can do or they can do so?
How can we all live in peace (visitors included)?
In distress

Dear Golab,
Some of us are one-human cats. We love our human pets, but we don't love or even much like any other human. Well, it's natural, isn't it? Those of us who were in animal shelters have often seen the worst side of human nature - humans throwing things at us, humans shouting, and sometimes cats have even been tortured in the microwave by sick human beings. Feral humans can be vile,much more evil than any animals.
I expect it took you time to learn to trust again. Now you do trust your new human pets, which is wonderful. I am sure that they have responded to your growing confidence and love.
Now it is time for them to look after you. Renting a special flat for you isn't exactly what you want. You'd prefer if they rented the flat for these visiting humans! However, that might not happen. Perhaps they would think of a cattery - not much fun for you, but if you have been in a rescue shelter you probably at least know the score.
If none of this happens, find a safe area in your home - under your humans' bed, on a high cupboard in the spare room, in a box cut to make a hidey hole or perhaps on a bookshelf somewhere. Settle in there. If you can, purrsuade your humans to keep the visitors away from your space. Maybe they could even give you a room of your own for a bit with your own litter tray, food and water, and a familiar bed. A Feliway diffuser would help too.
Tell them to tell the visitors to ignore you. If they are staying a long time, you may feel confident enough to come out and take a look at them. 

Saturday, July 18, 2009

Why do humans let off these terrible fireworks without warning?

Dear George,
Throughout my four years of life, I have always been a cat noted as much for my steely feline nerves as well as my luxurious coat and whiskers. Lately, however, my nerves have been severely shaken by the relentless human tendency toward the prosecution of ridiculous, noisy, unpleasant "customs." I speak of the American habit of setting light to these foul-smelling and explosive "firecracker" contraptions all night long beginning on what is apparently some sort of human date of note, earlier this month, and continuing throughout the warm summer months. The noise is deafening, and the smell worse. My human has served me effectively during such things as violent thunderstorms, and I have trained her to provide me with brushing and a steady stream of tuna-flavored Pounce during such natural calamities; however, fireworks "displays" are a thousand times worse.
I hope that you will not judge me too harshly when I confess, feline to feline, that I apparently have some sort of weakness in the face of such events. Quite honestly, I have been logging a lot of time under the bed, in closets, and up draperies, and frankly, shaking. I can't stand the noise! My nerves are just about shot. My human, good soul, wishes to help. Aside from laying in a larger-than-usual supply of Pounce, how should I instruct her to serve me during these firework catastrophes in a manner which will make the situation more agreeable to me? (Incidentally, in her blockheaded human fashion, she does not appear to be unnerved by the explosions, per se, but rather by my reaction. I fear that causing her distress in this way will cause her performance in my service to suffer. It's hard enough to get good help these days, and I wish to retain her in my employment as long as possible.)

Anxiously, Puss-Puss.
P.S. Here I am in my favorite window. As you can see, I am quite calm, and serenely watching the juicy little birds hop about on the lawn.

Dear Puss-Puss,
You are right to be frightened. Humans are probably the most inconsiderate and destructive species in the world. They rarely consider our comfort - unless we train them to do so. But your human, trained by you, did not set off these fireworks. It must have been neighbouring humans who don't have cats and don't think of feline welfare. Or canine welfare, come to that. Some dogs are utterly terrified by these explosive noises
That said, your human obviously failed to foresee this significant date which is (I can reveal) July 4. Other dates are Fireworks Day in the UK, November 5 and New Year's Eve, December 31.
Why these particular dates I have no idea. It's just part of the time-obsessed human way of life - special days in the year, strange intermittent two-day periods called 'weekends', so called 'holidays' when they desert us for several days. Clocks that tick, clocks that don't, computers that show time mouse tracks, alarm bells, cries of "You'll be late". They don't know how to settle to a sensible day-night routine based on light, a routine used by every other species that lives above ground. They live in fear of the future. They can't live just in the day like the rest of us do whether we are cats, birds or lilies of the field.
But I digress. If your human know in advance that fireworks are going off, the week before she could install a Feliway diffuser, which exudes a calming feline scent, or get a Feliway spray and spray your preferred room with it about ten minutes before the fireworks start. But if she doesn't know they are coming, its more difficult.
Most importantly, she must shut the cat flap so that you can't run out in fear and get lost. During Halloween or Fireworks day, there's the possiblity of feral humans catching you and throwing you in bonfires or hurling fireworks at you. She must keep you indoors from twilight onwards and give you somewhere to hide.
Keep your courage up. It's only a few days a year.
PS. Keep away from cat lovers in the US who catch up black cats and hand them into animal shelters before Halloween. They have the best of motives but seven out of ten cats so handed in are euthanased. Only no-kill shelters can offer real safety.

Friday, May 11, 2007

William reports: "I am feeling better."

I am feeling a bit better. George is still behaving like an adolescent lout, chasing me at all opportunities, lying in wait for me and trying to ambush me on the litter tray. Celia managed to stop him doing the latter this morning. She caught him in mid leap. She's taking a great interest in my deposits. I turn, look, sniff and cover it. She undoes the top, looks at it, sniffs, sizes it up, and takes it away instead of covering it up, as a good cat would. Then she crumbles the clump to see if there is blood in it. There isn't. She was frightfully pleased because I did just one big pee that night instead of lots of little ones.
I had a peaceful night. George is now locked up with his own litter tray, food and water in the spare bedroom. He seems OK about this but it doesn't stop him wanting to chase me. It just means I have the hours of darkness free from worrying. Mostly I wait till half way through the night and join Celia and Ronnie on the bed. Three in a bed, like three in a marriage, is one too many so sometimes Celia leaves to join George. It's not unlike an Edwardian house party at times in this house. Tobermory would have had some thoughts on this.
The living room smells sort of reassuring. There's a plug in (Feliway since you ask) which is beginning to smell nice. George was awful last night - wouldn't leave me alone. But nonetheless his behaviour is just a tiny bit less worrying for some reason. Oh yes and Celia has put my out door basket, where I used to sit to keep away from fierce elderly Mog (more of that another time) on a little raised dais. The idea is to stop George looming over me while I am in the basket. I have spent a lot of time this morning in the basket, feeling a little safer now it is higher up. I also ate some delicous expensive cat food made into a kind of soup - to increase my water intake, says Celia. She chased away George who wanted some. He doesn't need it, she said, but she let him lick the bowl clean. I am to have this day and night.
Perhaps my interest in my health is getting into a sort of hobby now that I am getting older. If you asked me how I am today, I might tell you in detail. I take a pink pill (to fight off urinary infection) morning and evenings. It doesn't taste too bad. This is medication for my waterworks trouble. The tests showed an infection - though it might have been bacteria from the litter tray rather than a secondary infection from cystitis. She is crumbling it with a Vetsyme tablet and I am eating it without needing it forced down my throat. We senior cats can't be too careful.
I'm still worried in general, but I am less worried. Lets hope it stays that way.

Help for cats whose humans show behaviour problems.

This blog is devoted to the study of human behaviour. We cats, who live with this sometimes unpredictable and always feeble minded species, can benefit from seeing their behaviour in its proper scientific context. The study of feline dilemmas, training problems, and difficulties with humans, can only benefit all of us. All of us train our humans - to buy the right food, for instance, but many of us do not have knowledge of how to improve our training methods. The human species is obviously not as intelligent as the cat, but nevertheless can learn quite a lot - if properly managed. Topics of interest include the use of claw and order, purring as a human reward, rubbing your human up the right way, when to bite, spraying as a method of making our wishes known, ignoring the human, human harassment, human inattention and sheer human stupidity. I welcome your questions. Photos can be sent via my secretary's website, This blog has been chosen as one of the top 50 feline blogs by Online