Territorial Cat(21 Posts)
Please help without judgement...
We got our 8 yr old (neutered) boy cat from Cats Protection 7 years ago. He’s been a great pet - very good and patient with the kids and cuddly (when it suits him). Until recently he would get into the odd fight (turf wars) which would sometimes require veterinary treatment (thank goodness for insurance)... However, in the last 12 months he has gotten into so many terrible fights with very serious consequences. We have spent thousands at the vet (yes we have insurance but an £80 excess every time). Realising that we can’t carry on like this we have attempted to make him an indoor cat. He is not happy (understandably) and regularly attempts to escape which causes us a lot of stress. He succeeded today and has just come back with two massive puncture wounds oozing blood. I’ve bathed them (hibiscrub) and will be off to the vets AGAIN first thing.
WWYD in the circumstances? We do love him but can’t carry on as we are. He’s miserable, we’re stressed (and broke!)... what are our options? All advice and suggestions welcome.
Mine is territorial too, but fortunately every other cat in the area is terrified of him, so keep well away, so there's been no damage.
Not sure what to suggest other than moving house!
Any chance of some sort of enclosure for him?
are the fights at similar times of days? some cats have defined schedules, so if you can keep him in when the other cat is about ?
Thank you all for your replies...,
Took him to the vets today - to get treated and to discuss our options. Was hoping for some hormone injection to chill him out (tho, that said, he’s super chill with us and the kids) but, alas, no such thing exists. Hadn’t realised that euthanasia was an ‘option’ (it’s not to me) for a ‘healthy’ cat but when the vet suggested it as an ‘option’ and saw my shocked reaction, he explained that the ‘alternative’ (people doing it themselves) was even worse.... it hadn’t even crossed my mind 😱
Soooo, after much discussion and with a very heavy heart I have put him up for a home to home adoption with CP (wouldn’t put him in a pen). In the meantime we have to increase our efforts to keep him inside - even if that does mean putting him in the dog’s crate while we have workmen in (which was why he managed to escape yesterday). There’s a (good) chance he won’t be adopted, but it’s all I can bring myself to do!
Has anyone tried the pheromone spray/plug ins????
Google Jackson Galaxy- US cat behaviourist. I reckon he’d suggest something like making indoors so massively fun for him. He calls it a cat superhighway.
Pheromones work for some cats but not others. Would definitely try them.
Poor you. Heartbreaking.
Fights are as and when.... or so it seems.
We’ve already spent a fortune on a new ‘micro chip’ cat flap (we have another cat), lidded litter tray, big indoor scratch post thingy - and have no room for an enclosure!
But good ideas - thanks!
Does he get on with the other cat? Is he being territorial outside because he isn’t the boss inside? Is the other cat male or female? Females can be bossy and maybe he feels shut out. In cat terms, that is. Not saying you don’t love him.
Have you tried him on zylkene? It calms my Bengal down.
I don't understand how the other costs aren't scared of him, next doors cat runs when mine appears.
If it is a “reaction “ for want of a better word, to territorial issues with the other cat indoors that is definitely fixable.
You could try taking him out on a harness, I do this with mine as he was previously a house cat. I've got a mynwood cat harness and extender lead.
Get a lavender plug in from Wilkinsons and pet rescue remedy from online. Put a couple of drops of the rescue remedy on his ears every day.It contains natural oils and helps calm them down.
Those Feliway plugs ins according to the cat place I got mine from dont work and they are expensive. The Wilkos plug in is £1.99 I think.
Thank you.... the other cat is a kitten - he’s definitely not a fan, but we’ve only had her a month and this has been going on for a year plus. I always make sure I make a fuss of him when the kitten is around - but everyone else does seem to be on his case a bit (the kitten winds him up, he reacts and then gets told off!)
We tried a harness.... he wasn’t impressed, but, more than that, it opened up an injury in his armpits. This is a reoccurring injury so won’t be trying again for a while.
But do appreciate all the suggestions!
Give him some places to go in the house that let him get out of the kitten’s way - preferably high up spots.
We moved around alot in the space of a couple of years when I left the forces. Every where new my cat had to fight to claim a bit of terriotry of his own. All those places had a high density cat population. He's was fighting most nights and like you thank goodness for pet insurance, he was a regular with infected fight wounds. When we finally moved to where I have settled there is bags of room (backs onto a secondary school) and hardly any other cats. He is now so chilled, not stressed and no fight wounds since being here. I not sure if this explanation is any good because who would move house over a cat? But is there a high density of cats where you live? Are there more hanging around than before? If there is feral cats breading in your area that like increase to pressure for land
The ‘funny’ thing is that we are actually quite rural and our house backs onto a row of fields that I’ve never seen another cat in (ie: they are all his!) It sounds like he’s muscling in on another cat’s territory tbh - there might even be a female cat involved, not that he can do anything!
You have given me a lot of hope that he can find happiness elsewhere (having just spent a lot of money, blood, sweat and tears renovating, we are never moving again!) But is there much of a market for 8 year old cats!?!?
I do separate him and the kitten - he gets to roam the house (when he’s not oozing blood and pus) and I usually keep her in the kitchen with me and the dog. But think the cat suffers a bit from FOMO as he seems to prefer being where the rest of us are! Can’t win...!
Does he have places to watch on high in the house?
Ours was really territorial - until I switched to feeding small feeds four times a day. Now he’s so food orientated he hangs around the house instead. When do you feed your boy?
Yes he’s neutered... he likes to sit on the window sills (and watch the works he’s not allowed to access go by) - the kitten is too small to get up there at the moment.
Interesting theory about the food - he has kibble down 24/7 - but lives from r his nightly pouch. Will try splitting the pouch into smaller, more frequent meals. Thank you.
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