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chaniarts
May 25th 11, 07:17 PM
i have 2 cats that are very aggressive with each other (see my previous
reply post about introducing a new cat). when together they resemble the
ball of fighting cats you'd see in old time cartoons; i keep expecting to
see !$%*& characters come out of the furball.

in order to try to contain them, i'm starting to harness train them, so i
can attach a leash and be able to hold them apart.

on one of them (a 23lb one, so have to use a small dog harness), i put it on
very loosely but snug to his skin. he immediately hunkered down and became
very still for a little while, then started backing up crawling on his
belly. he continued to do this until he ran into the wall, then stopped and
froze for about 30 seconds. then he'd shift around, and back up until he hit
something else. this went on for about 15 minutes, and then he climbed up on
the couch, laid down on his side and went to sleep. he was very subdued and
not his usual active self. he almost never sleeps in this position, so i was
wondering what was going on in that little mind of his.

when i removed the harness after about an hour, he immediately returned to
his normal self and didn't seem to be affected in any manner.

i'm guessing that the pressure on the back of his nape reminded him of his
mother grabbing or moving him by lifting from the nape? i can't really
explain why he only backed up all over the room. there was nothing attached
to the harness clip, nor were we even near him at the time.

cshenk
May 26th 11, 12:03 AM
chaniarts wrote in rec.pets.cats.health+behav:

> i have 2 cats that are very aggressive with each other (see my
> previous reply post about introducing a new cat). when together they
> resemble the ball of fighting cats you'd see in old time cartoons; i
> keep expecting to see !$%*& characters come out of the furball.
>
> in order to try to contain them, i'm starting to harness train them,
> so i can attach a leash and be able to hold them apart.
>
> on one of them (a 23lb one, so have to use a small dog harness), i
> put it on very loosely but snug to his skin. he immediately hunkered
> down and became very still for a little while, then started backing
> up crawling on his belly. he continued to do this until he ran into
> the wall, then stopped and froze for about 30 seconds. then he'd
> shift around, and back up until he hit something else. this went on
> for about 15 minutes, and then he climbed up on the couch, laid down
> on his side and went to sleep. he was very subdued and not his usual
> active self. he almost never sleeps in this position, so i was
> wondering what was going on in that little mind of his.
>
> when i removed the harness after about an hour, he immediately
> returned to his normal self and didn't seem to be affected in any
> manner.
>
> i'm guessing that the pressure on the back of his nape reminded him
> of his mother grabbing or moving him by lifting from the nape? i
> can't really explain why he only backed up all over the room. there
> was nothing attached to the harness clip, nor were we even near him
> at the time.

I'd say the 23 lb cat is what dog folks call 'pack leader and secure'
and just got knocked off his shelf for a bit. This happens sometimes
with larger cats only used to small ones. Though not always the
leader, they are often enough it in a house.

The smaller scrappy one wont accept this so you have trouble. It
pretty much has to be settled early on and I gather it's been 2 years?

As to that backing up, that is common first time in a harness. Ferals
can turn on you in a flash in that situation without experience in how
to handle them.

Nitesbane
May 26th 11, 03:50 AM
"chaniarts" > wrote in message
...
><snip>> when i removed the harness after about an hour, he immediately
>returned to his normal self and didn't seem to be affected in any manner.
>
> i'm guessing that the pressure on the back of his nape reminded him of his
> mother grabbing or moving him by lifting from the nape? i can't really
> explain why he only backed up all over the room. there was nothing
> attached to the harness clip, nor were we even near him at the time.
>

My Midnight used to do the same exact thing. I would leave her harness on
while she walked around in the house, and then put her leash on to take her
outside. After doing this for maybe a year or so, I was able to trust her
without the leash & harness but she never got 100% used to wearing that
harness. She would always walk really low to the ground when she had it on,
as if it weighed a hundred pounds.

chaniarts
May 26th 11, 03:58 PM
cshenk wrote:
> chaniarts wrote in rec.pets.cats.health+behav:
>
>> i have 2 cats that are very aggressive with each other (see my
>> previous reply post about introducing a new cat). when together they
>> resemble the ball of fighting cats you'd see in old time cartoons; i
>> keep expecting to see !$%*& characters come out of the furball.
>>
>> in order to try to contain them, i'm starting to harness train them,
>> so i can attach a leash and be able to hold them apart.
>>
>> on one of them (a 23lb one, so have to use a small dog harness), i
>> put it on very loosely but snug to his skin. he immediately hunkered
>> down and became very still for a little while, then started backing
>> up crawling on his belly. he continued to do this until he ran into
>> the wall, then stopped and froze for about 30 seconds. then he'd
>> shift around, and back up until he hit something else. this went on
>> for about 15 minutes, and then he climbed up on the couch, laid down
>> on his side and went to sleep. he was very subdued and not his usual
>> active self. he almost never sleeps in this position, so i was
>> wondering what was going on in that little mind of his.
>>
>> when i removed the harness after about an hour, he immediately
>> returned to his normal self and didn't seem to be affected in any
>> manner.
>>
>> i'm guessing that the pressure on the back of his nape reminded him
>> of his mother grabbing or moving him by lifting from the nape? i
>> can't really explain why he only backed up all over the room. there
>> was nothing attached to the harness clip, nor were we even near him
>> at the time.
>
> I'd say the 23 lb cat is what dog folks call 'pack leader and secure'
> and just got knocked off his shelf for a bit. This happens sometimes
> with larger cats only used to small ones. Though not always the
> leader, they are often enough it in a house.

thanks. he was the leader of the house until my newest adoption about 2
years ago. that was a purebred bengal i obtained from a breeder going out of
business who had 'donated' all his cats to the local rescue. this one was a
2 y.o. female, very small, and she immediately took over being the boss. she
had never been out of a cage in her life, nor handled by humans, and acted
just like a feral. it took about 2 months before i could touch her. she
still can't be held for more than a couple of minutes, but is willing to be
pet for short periods of time and doesn't try to skin your hands anymore.
she does rule the roost now, and the big guy is number 2 in the pecking
order.

> The smaller scrappy one wont accept this so you have trouble. It
> pretty much has to be settled early on and I gather it's been 2 years?

yes, the foster is much smaller (6lbs) and was captured off the streets
after some dogs had cornered and tore her up a bit. she was in the shelter
for 2 years; i've only had her in my house for 5-6 months. i took 2 weeks to
slowly introduce them using the techniques i've always used with success,
but 2 days after they first had physical contact and the foster didn't back
down any, i had a multiple cat fight on my hands. for some reason, any time
this pair got into it, a couple of the others decided they also had to get
in on the fun, sorta like teenager fights in the lunchroom.

> As to that backing up, that is common first time in a harness. Ferals
> can turn on you in a flash in that situation without experience in how
> to handle them.

all of mine, including this big guy, were from rescues or i adopted off the
street. i never got the history of him, but this foster was living on the
streets for quite a while. she still is skittish when she hears different
noises, which i don't ever expect her to give up.

May 27th 11, 04:15 AM
I recently lost a cat of 10 years whose parents were both barn cats. I
got him at 8 weeks of age, but clearly his instinct for hunting was
very high. With nothing normal inside to hunt, he hunted the other
cats, whichever ones would run and squeal (jumbo mouse).

As an experiment, I put a halter on him. He did the routine reaction
of crouching down and slithering more than walking. Eventually, he got
used to it, and would walk normally with it. He would run, jump, and
climb with it on. But he never once attacked anybody with it on. And
he would usually go into a calm and cuddly mode when I put on. So, I
used it a lot with him.

He would get really bad every time I returned from a trip, especially
the first half hour. So, every time I got home from a trip, I loved
him up and put the halter on him for about an hour. Then he was safe.

At a cat show, I saw an Abyssinian wearing a halter inside his
benching cage. I asked the owner, and she said it kept him calmer.
Earlier this year, I saw an item for sale, called a "thundershirt" for
dogs that is like a snug shirt that has a calming effect. So, maybe
there is something calming about having something like this on. The
halters I use are not like the leash halters you see at stores.

They are shaped like a large H, flat material, and attach via velcro
patches.

http://www.zoocrewphoto.com/catproofs/jayjay02.jpg

This is a photo of one of my cats wearing one. This is not the hunter
cat. I have halters for all my cats since I travel with them.

Bill Graham
May 27th 11, 10:14 PM
wrote:
> I recently lost a cat of 10 years whose parents were both barn cats. I
> got him at 8 weeks of age, but clearly his instinct for hunting was
> very high. With nothing normal inside to hunt, he hunted the other
> cats, whichever ones would run and squeal (jumbo mouse).
>
> As an experiment, I put a halter on him. He did the routine reaction
> of crouching down and slithering more than walking. Eventually, he got
> used to it, and would walk normally with it. He would run, jump, and
> climb with it on. But he never once attacked anybody with it on. And
> he would usually go into a calm and cuddly mode when I put on. So, I
> used it a lot with him.
>
> He would get really bad every time I returned from a trip, especially
> the first half hour. So, every time I got home from a trip, I loved
> him up and put the halter on him for about an hour. Then he was safe.
>
> At a cat show, I saw an Abyssinian wearing a halter inside his
> benching cage. I asked the owner, and she said it kept him calmer.
> Earlier this year, I saw an item for sale, called a "thundershirt" for
> dogs that is like a snug shirt that has a calming effect. So, maybe
> there is something calming about having something like this on. The
> halters I use are not like the leash halters you see at stores.
>
> They are shaped like a large H, flat material, and attach via velcro
> patches.
>
> http://www.zoocrewphoto.com/catproofs/jayjay02.jpg
>
> This is a photo of one of my cats wearing one. This is not the hunter
> cat. I have halters for all my cats since I travel with them.

I have one that hates collars with a bell on them. He went crazy until I
took the bell off, so now I just keep a name tag on so peoiple wiull know
where to bring him if he dies or gets lost. I think the bell made it hard
for him to hunt mice and voles which he does frequently....

dgk
May 31st 11, 06:35 PM
On Fri, 27 May 2011 14:14:45 -0700, "Bill Graham" >
wrote:

wrote:
>> I recently lost a cat of 10 years whose parents were both barn cats. I
>> got him at 8 weeks of age, but clearly his instinct for hunting was
>> very high. With nothing normal inside to hunt, he hunted the other
>> cats, whichever ones would run and squeal (jumbo mouse).
>>
>> As an experiment, I put a halter on him. He did the routine reaction
>> of crouching down and slithering more than walking. Eventually, he got
>> used to it, and would walk normally with it. He would run, jump, and
>> climb with it on. But he never once attacked anybody with it on. And
>> he would usually go into a calm and cuddly mode when I put on. So, I
>> used it a lot with him.
>>
>> He would get really bad every time I returned from a trip, especially
>> the first half hour. So, every time I got home from a trip, I loved
>> him up and put the halter on him for about an hour. Then he was safe.
>>
>> At a cat show, I saw an Abyssinian wearing a halter inside his
>> benching cage. I asked the owner, and she said it kept him calmer.
>> Earlier this year, I saw an item for sale, called a "thundershirt" for
>> dogs that is like a snug shirt that has a calming effect. So, maybe
>> there is something calming about having something like this on. The
>> halters I use are not like the leash halters you see at stores.
>>
>> They are shaped like a large H, flat material, and attach via velcro
>> patches.
>>
>> http://www.zoocrewphoto.com/catproofs/jayjay02.jpg
>>
>> This is a photo of one of my cats wearing one. This is not the hunter
>> cat. I have halters for all my cats since I travel with them.
>
>I have one that hates collars with a bell on them. He went crazy until I
>took the bell off, so now I just keep a name tag on so peoiple wiull know
>where to bring him if he dies or gets lost. I think the bell made it hard
>for him to hunt mice and voles which he does frequently....

I read somewhere that a bell on a collar doesn't interfere with a cat
killing birds, I don't know about other animals but apparently birds
don't associate a bell with danger.

Bill Graham
May 31st 11, 10:00 PM
dgk wrote:
> On Fri, 27 May 2011 14:14:45 -0700, "Bill Graham" >
> wrote:
>
>> wrote:
>>> I recently lost a cat of 10 years whose parents were both barn
>>> cats. I got him at 8 weeks of age, but clearly his instinct for
>>> hunting was very high. With nothing normal inside to hunt, he
>>> hunted the other cats, whichever ones would run and squeal (jumbo
>>> mouse).
>>>
>>> As an experiment, I put a halter on him. He did the routine reaction
>>> of crouching down and slithering more than walking. Eventually, he
>>> got used to it, and would walk normally with it. He would run,
>>> jump, and climb with it on. But he never once attacked anybody with
>>> it on. And he would usually go into a calm and cuddly mode when I
>>> put on. So, I used it a lot with him.
>>>
>>> He would get really bad every time I returned from a trip,
>>> especially the first half hour. So, every time I got home from a
>>> trip, I loved him up and put the halter on him for about an hour.
>>> Then he was safe.
>>>
>>> At a cat show, I saw an Abyssinian wearing a halter inside his
>>> benching cage. I asked the owner, and she said it kept him calmer.
>>> Earlier this year, I saw an item for sale, called a "thundershirt"
>>> for dogs that is like a snug shirt that has a calming effect. So,
>>> maybe there is something calming about having something like this
>>> on. The halters I use are not like the leash halters you see at
>>> stores.
>>>
>>> They are shaped like a large H, flat material, and attach via velcro
>>> patches.
>>>
>>> http://www.zoocrewphoto.com/catproofs/jayjay02.jpg
>>>
>>> This is a photo of one of my cats wearing one. This is not the
>>> hunter cat. I have halters for all my cats since I travel with them.
>>
>> I have one that hates collars with a bell on them. He went crazy
>> until I took the bell off, so now I just keep a name tag on so
>> peoiple wiull know where to bring him if he dies or gets lost. I
>> think the bell made it hard for him to hunt mice and voles which he
>> does frequently....
>
> I read somewhere that a bell on a collar doesn't interfere with a cat
> killing birds, I don't know about other animals but apparently birds
> don't associate a bell with danger.

Probably true. When I was a kid the lady who lived next door had a cat that
killed birds. She put a bell collar on it, and it didn't slow the cat down
at all. It could stalk a bird and kill it without the bell making a tinkle.
But my B-K hated it, so I removed it. He is happy with the name tag, even
though it tinkles on the edge of the bowl when he is drinking water.