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BigBoy is having lots of behavioural problems lately.

(18 Posts)
KittensWithWeapons Wed 01-Feb-17 00:05:12

So we have three cats, BigPuss (female), BigBoy (male) and LittlePuss (female). BigBoy was the last one we got, over a year ago. He came from the local animal rescue and had a bit of a rough start - he was rehomed and returned to the rescue three times, as the people who had rehomed him found him to be too much hard work. He was however, totally happy and settled here from the day he came home. Just a big, clumsy, affectionate goofball grin.

He's seemed very distressed and out of sorts for the past few days. He's flittered two pairs of curtains by swinging out of them and slashing at them, has been pouncing at me - sliced my hand open, biting my toes (not the normal affectionate nibbling but proper aggressive chomping) and took a swipe at my face, narrowly missing my eye. He's also frequently wandering the house, howling. It's so out of character for him. Nothing has changed in the house that could have upset him.

Any ideas as to why he might be so out of sorts? And what I can do for him? It's actually distressing DP and I, as he's so clearly not himself.

He's not going anywhere, btw. When we discussed homing him, DP and I promised each other that regardless of what happened (based on his previous people finding him to be high needs / difficult), this was his forever home. Which it is. Just want our lovely big lump to be happy!

lazydog Wed 01-Feb-17 00:09:23

He sounds like he's in pain. Get him to a vets ASAP!

KittensWithWeapons Wed 01-Feb-17 00:13:15

Do you think? He's eating well, drinking well, peeing and pooping normally. Is happy to be stroked as normal. Not disagreeing btw, just trying to paint a full picture. Can definitely get him to the vet first thing in the morning though. As of course if he is in pain, he needs to be seen to asap.

Userone1 Wed 01-Feb-17 00:20:09

I assume he is neutered.

Maybe he is ill or in pain?

Recently, my usually docile elderly cat began hissing at me if I even sat near her. Swiping at people, when touched, the dogs etc behaving out of character.

A few days later it became apparent when clumps of her fur started to fall out. She needed antibiotics where another cat had bitten her and it became infected.

Userone1 Wed 01-Feb-17 00:32:50

Also how old is he?

Could he be bored? Can he come and go as he pleases? Cat flap? Indoor cat?

KittensWithWeapons Wed 01-Feb-17 00:34:21

He is indeed neutered. The animal rescue actually had him neutered for us, as when we enquired about homing him, LittlePuss was too young to be done. They would never allow an un-neutered male to go to a home with an un-neutered female, and while they normally make it the responsibility of the future homers, they strongly felt (after several interviews and visits) that we were the right home for him, so they had their vet do it.

He definitely hasn't been bitten, as (bar BigPuss, who was a stray and so likes to wander in the trees across from our house) they are never outside unsupervised. But of course there could be something else causing him pain.

DP has just pointed out that there has been a new boy hanging around outside the house (opposite us we have a vacant field, with a thicket of trees between it and our street. There are loads of strays there). This particular boy has been yowling outside the house lately. That could be upsetting him?

Anyway, going to phone the on call vet now and see what they think. Thanks for the replies!

KittensWithWeapons Wed 01-Feb-17 00:37:29

He's 2. Not bored, they have loads of company, I play with them constantly. He's an indoor cat, I bring them out for fresh air but he doesn't really enjoy it. He's now happily flaked out on my lap, bathing himself. DP on hold for the vet though, so we'll see what they say.

Userone1 Wed 01-Feb-17 00:40:16

Yes I think a new cat in the area could cause his behaviour. I think it's called 'redirected aggression' if you want to Google.

Sounds sensible to give the vet a call, if just to rule out any physical cause.

Good luck smile

lazydog Wed 01-Feb-17 00:42:41

He's obviously distressed. If it's not physical pain/illness, then he's stressed about something else, but a physical cause should be ruled out. I don't disagree that it could quite well be a response to the new vocal cat hanging around his territory, but I really wouldn't take the risk of assuming that's the case until he's had a full MOT and no physical cause is found.

KittensWithWeapons Wed 01-Feb-17 00:51:57

Thanks so much, both of you. DP spoke to the vet and we're bringing him in first thing to be checked out. He's now chilling out, nestled into the sofa. Isn't he gorgeous? wink

Userone1 Wed 01-Feb-17 06:37:50


Userone1 Wed 01-Feb-17 22:34:22

How did it go at the vets?

KittensWithWeapons Thu 02-Feb-17 00:40:09

He's in perfect health. No illness or injury, which is great. The vet we bring him to is the one who does work for the animal rescue, so she's seen him before. She neutered him, and reckons he's always been a bit anxious, possibly due to his rocky start in life. She thinks maybe the new boy is upsetting him, he's very loud so can definitely be heard inside the house. So I was home all day today, and just sat cuddling him for hours in a room at the back of the house where he couldn't hear the new stray boy. He seems much better. No curtain wrecking at all.

The stray boy is still yowling outside, so in the morning we'll try to lure him into a carrier and bring him to the rescue. I'd love to take him in but I think it would upset the kitties we have too much.

Userone1 Thu 02-Feb-17 06:40:24

Good news smile

Is the cat a stray? Maybe even feral? Or maybe just a noisy neighbours cat!

Trustyourself2 Thu 02-Feb-17 11:24:21

So good of you to think about the outside yowler, while BigBoy is out of sorts. Hopefully, BigBoy will rest easy now. I have a boy who's known as BigBoy, but he's actually shrinking with age now - he's 20.

KittensWithWeapons Thu 02-Feb-17 23:54:57

I'm not sure if the yowler is a stray. He's super friendly, which suggests that he could be a pet. When we first started feeding BigPuss it took us ages to get her into the house. It was months before she'd let us pet her. Whereas this boy was demanding cuddles and very sociable. So the animal rescue came and scooped him up today, they will have brought him to the vet for a checkup, so I'll ring tomorrow to ask if he was microchipped. Hopefully he is, and has a family waiting to bring him home. If he is a stray though, they'll look after him until they can find him a good home. I'd love to offer him a home, but it's just not feasible right now.

Ah, Trust, I'm sure your BigBoy is lovely. My Nan has an ancient cat, she was actually Granda's, but since Granda died, Nan's been very attached to her. She's getting old and skinny and poorly, but still loves the cuddles. She probably doesn't have long left.

BigBoy is very happily flaked out with LittlePuss on the sofa. It's a relief to see him back to his big dopey self wink

Userone1 Fri 03-Feb-17 08:19:02

Your story of yowler reminded me of this!

My old girl, 18 years old, still goes out the cat flap. She doesn't go further than back of front garden. She loves sitting in the front garden in the summer and watching the world go by. She is quite vocal and meows, very loudlly at passers by for attention.

Last summer I was in bed, windows wide open, about 11pm. I heard my old girl doing her meow at passers by. Then voices, as they obviously stopped to give her some attention.

Then meowing became more distant, I looked out of the window, 2 women carrying my old girl away up the street! 'Hey where are you going with my cat'....'sorry we thought she was a stray'!

Trustyourself2 Fri 03-Feb-17 22:52:09

Kittens what brilliant rescuers. That's great that they'll look after yowler.

So glad BigBoy's settled back. Cats are funny old creatures.

Glad your Nan has cat company since your Granda's no longer with her. They bring so much comfort to us.

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