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Gary McGath
December 6th 06, 03:29 PM
It's been years since I checked into rec.pets.cats, but it used to be a
good place for advice and I hope it still is with its new (to me) branch
groups.

I received a cat this weekend. It was a stray that my neighbor caught
for me. In the trap it seemed nervous but not averse to contact, which
I thought was a reasonable sign. I brought him to the vet, where he was
neutered and given a number of precautionary treatments. That was
Saturday, and I brought him home on Sunday.

So far he hasn't been adjusting very well. At first I kept him in the
laundry room with the door closed, so he wouldn't have to deal with
Carl, my other cat, right away. He's thrown up three times and had
diarrhea once; I took him back to the vet to check on that. He got IV
fluids and an anti-nausea drug and hasn't thrown up (anywhere I can find
it) since then.

But he still hides in corners and won't come out. In fact, I've named
him Haydn. He'll accept petting, but won't approach me, even from a few
inches away. Usually he doesn't back away, though sometimes he will. I
can pick him up briefly; he squirms but doesn't fight.

There haven't been any signs of hostility toward me. He doesn't act
afraid of me, just afraid.

My other cat, Carl, is mildly curious about him. Haydn growls when Carl
comes near, and I've heard a few clashes out of my sight. Mostly Carl
leaves him alone, and I don't think Carl has ever been hostile to him.

I'm hoping Haydn will become less timid, but there are no signs of
progress so far. I try to pet him when I get a chance, though sometimes
this requires contortions to reach his hiding place. He purrs when I do.

Any thoughts on how to best deal with this cat?

--
Gary McGath http://www.mcgath.com

cybercat
December 6th 06, 04:35 PM
"Gary McGath" > wrote in message
...
> It's been years since I checked into rec.pets.cats, but it used to be a
> good place for advice and I hope it still is with its new (to me) branch
> groups.
>
> I received a cat this weekend. It was a stray that my neighbor caught
> for me. In the trap it seemed nervous but not averse to contact, which
> I thought was a reasonable sign. I brought him to the vet, where he was
> neutered and given a number of precautionary treatments. That was
> Saturday, and I brought him home on Sunday.
>
> So far he hasn't been adjusting very well. At first I kept him in the
> laundry room with the door closed, so he wouldn't have to deal with
> Carl, my other cat, right away. He's thrown up three times and had
> diarrhea once; I took him back to the vet to check on that. He got IV
> fluids and an anti-nausea drug and hasn't thrown up (anywhere I can find
> it) since then.
>
> But he still hides in corners and won't come out. In fact, I've named
> him Haydn. He'll accept petting, but won't approach me, even from a few
> inches away. Usually he doesn't back away, though sometimes he will. I
> can pick him up briefly; he squirms but doesn't fight.
>
> There haven't been any signs of hostility toward me. He doesn't act
> afraid of me, just afraid.
>
> My other cat, Carl, is mildly curious about him. Haydn growls when Carl
> comes near, and I've heard a few clashes out of my sight. Mostly Carl
> leaves him alone, and I don't think Carl has ever been hostile to him.
>
> I'm hoping Haydn will become less timid, but there are no signs of
> progress so far. I try to pet him when I get a chance, though sometimes
> this requires contortions to reach his hiding place. He purrs when I do.
>
> Any thoughts on how to best deal with this cat?
>
> --
> Gary McGath http://www.mcgath.com


Gary, Bless you for taking him! I know it can be frustrating when it takes
them a while to warm up to you, but I can tell you have a winner because he
purrs when you pet him! Bet he's a people cat just waiting to bloom.
If you can just find some patience, he will come along. You have not had him
for very long, and who knows what he has been through?

At the shelter where I got one of my cats, the lady has what I thought was
an odd way of dealing with very timid
cats, but she says it works every time. She keeps them in her
bathroom--meaning the one she uses all the time. She says it gets them to
warm up to her because there is no place to hide, and because they can
observe her, smell her (lol!) and get used to the idea that she will not
hurt them. She would just go on about her business, not corner or pursue the
cat, and eventually the cat would pursue her! You are already a cat man, so
you know how cats somehow adore us when we are on the porcelain throne!

Good luck, and let us know what happens. This is the kind of cat that often
winds up being the best friend ever. All he needs is some patience. You're a
good man.



--
Posted via a free Usenet account from http://www.teranews.com

Rhonda
December 6th 06, 05:51 PM
Gary McGath wrote:
> You're writing as if you know me. Do I know you by some other name?

Gary, my guess is she doesn't know you -- we just like people here who
save cats! Lots of people go to the pet store and get that cute kitten
in the window, but not enough will take in a cat trapped outside with
(probably) unknown origin and temperament.

> That seems to boil down to "leave the cat alone, let it come to you." I
> suppose it's the only way that works.

She was not saying that -- she was saying put the cat in a room where it
has to interact from you. In a bathroom, there is no place to hide.

We did that with 3 feral kittens we trapped years ago. It does work
well, although the crazy kittens figured out how to open drawers and
hide behind them. They once opened a drawer so far that it blocked the
door when when we tried to get in. It was a smart tactic on their part.

Anyway, wherever you decide to keep the kitty, spend time with him. Lots
of time. Quietly sit in the same room. I sat on the floor and just read
with our last former feral. I sat a little closer every day. Then I
would talk to him, saying anything to get him used to my voice. Another
thing that can work -- food. Take him treats and let him know they come
from you. Eventually try to get him to eat out of your hand -- it's a
sign of trust.

It's a great that he doesn't mind you petting him and even purrs.

Good luck,

Rhonda

cybercat
December 6th 06, 05:59 PM
"Gary McGath" > wrote in message
...
> In article >,
> "cybercat" > wrote:
>
>> Gary, Bless you for taking him!
>
> Why? I wanted a cat, this was one way of doing it. I'm not someone who
> collects cats for virtue points.

Because the cat was a stray, asshole. lol


>
>> At the shelter where I got one of my cats, the lady has what I thought
>> was
>> an odd way of dealing with very timid
>> cats, but she says it works every time. She keeps them in her
>> bathroom--meaning the one she uses all the time. She says it gets them to
>> warm up to her because there is no place to hide, and because they can
>> observe her, smell her (lol!) and get used to the idea that she will not
>> hurt them. She would just go on about her business, not corner or pursue
>> the
>> cat, and eventually the cat would pursue her! You are already a cat man,
>> so
>> you know how cats somehow adore us when we are on the porcelain throne!
>
> You're writing as if you know me. Do I know you by some other name?

You said you had a cat, asshole. And you adopted a stray. That says catman
to me.

>
> That seems to boil down to "leave the cat alone, let it come to you." I
> suppose it's the only way that works.
>

No, that is not what I said. Read it again. I said, put the cat in a place
where
he has to be around you and cannot hide. Like your bathroom.

Got much of a chip on your shoulder there, Gar?



--
Posted via a free Usenet account from http://www.teranews.com

mlbriggs
December 6th 06, 06:17 PM
On Wed, 06 Dec 2006 10:29:08 -0500, Gary McGath wrote:

> It's been years since I checked into rec.pets.cats, but it used to be a
> good place for advice and I hope it still is with its new (to me) branch
> groups.
>
> I received a cat this weekend. It was a stray that my neighbor caught
> for me. In the trap it seemed nervous but not averse to contact, which
> I thought was a reasonable sign. I brought him to the vet, where he was
> neutered and given a number of precautionary treatments. That was
> Saturday, and I brought him home on Sunday.
>
> So far he hasn't been adjusting very well. At first I kept him in the
> laundry room with the door closed, so he wouldn't have to deal with
> Carl, my other cat, right away. He's thrown up three times and had
> diarrhea once; I took him back to the vet to check on that. He got IV
> fluids and an anti-nausea drug and hasn't thrown up (anywhere I can find
> it) since then.
>
> But he still hides in corners and won't come out. In fact, I've named
> him Haydn. He'll accept petting, but won't approach me, even from a few
> inches away. Usually he doesn't back away, though sometimes he will. I
> can pick him up briefly; he squirms but doesn't fight.
>
> There haven't been any signs of hostility toward me. He doesn't act
> afraid of me, just afraid.
>
> My other cat, Carl, is mildly curious about him. Haydn growls when Carl
> comes near, and I've heard a few clashes out of my sight. Mostly Carl
> leaves him alone, and I don't think Carl has ever been hostile to him.
>
> I'm hoping Haydn will become less timid, but there are no signs of
> progress so far. I try to pet him when I get a chance, though sometimes
> this requires contortions to reach his hiding place. He purrs when I do.
>
> Any thoughts on how to best deal with this cat?


Just give him plenty of time! Keep doing what you are doing. Can you
leave a small radio on so he can get used to voices? MLB

cybercat
December 6th 06, 06:33 PM
"Rhonda" > wrote in message
...
> Gary McGath wrote:
>> You're writing as if you know me. Do I know you by some other name?
>
> Gary, my guess is she doesn't know you -- we just like people here who
> save cats! Lots of people go to the pet store and get that cute kitten in
> the window, but not enough will take in a cat trapped outside with
> (probably) unknown origin and temperament.
>

gd, Rhonda, I can't even win when I am being sweet! lol

Rhonda
December 6th 06, 07:22 PM
cybercat wrote:
> "Rhonda" > wrote in message
> ...
>
>>Gary McGath wrote:
>>
>>>You're writing as if you know me. Do I know you by some other name?
>>
>>Gary, my guess is she doesn't know you -- we just like people here who
>>save cats! Lots of people go to the pet store and get that cute kitten in
>>the window, but not enough will take in a cat trapped outside with
>>(probably) unknown origin and temperament.
>
> gd, Rhonda, I can't even win when I am being sweet! lol

I know, and I liked your post! Maybe chalk this up to too much sugar
over the holidays.

Try again about mid-January. :)

Rhonda

December 6th 06, 07:31 PM
You're doing fine. Relax. Cats adjust on cat time, not human time. Look
at it from the cat's point of view - he was free and now he's been
caught by a stranger and confined to a strange place in another cat's
territory. He's worried, that's all and he has a BIG change in
circumstances to adjust to and cats don't particularly like changes.

The first thing to do is to get him used to you - it's actually a
really good sign that he'll let you touch him. That means he has some
sense that you aren't out to hurt him. But he does need to watch you
for a while to try to figure out what's going on here. So just let him
hide for a while - and spend some time in his area - talk to him, tell
him about your day, listen to some quiet music (nothing too
discordant), read, watch tv, fold laundry, whatever - just go about
your business while giving him a friendly greeting and lots of space to
watch you. If he comes close, make your eyes slitty and call his name
to indicate that you like him. Don't try to creep up on him and hold
him or extricate him from his hiding place and if you startle him,
don't follow and tell him you are sorry in a gentle voice. Give him
lots of yummy food (a little Fancy Feast can do wonders and usually
Temptations treats work) - put a soft blanket as close to his hiding
place as you can get and put a few fuzzy mice around the room - so he
sees that you care about his needs and wants.

Eventually (probably a few weeks), he'll start approaching for some
pets - try to give him a few and then back off - the idea is to leave
him wanting more - not to overwhelm him with too much. Try to massage
the top of the head - usually that's soothing. When he seems to be
happy to see you and calm about getting a few pets, then you can start
to leave the door open for some initial contact with the other cat.
There will be some hissing and hitting, but if both the new and old
cats are secure in their relationships with you - they will work it
out. Seperate them for a while if they get over-excited, but otherwise
it's probably best to let them work it out - just make sure that both
of them get a little private time with you so they don't feel jealous
of each other.

Thanks for what you're doing for this guy. It isn't easy at first, but
it's so worthwhile and you'll have a great cat if you can just hang in
for a few months while he's getting acclimated.

Best,

Tracy

cybercat
December 6th 06, 08:09 PM
"Gary McGath" > wrote in message
...
> In article >,
> "cybercat" > wrote:
>
>> "Gary McGath" > wrote in message
>> ...
>> > In article >,
>> > "cybercat" > wrote:
>> >
>> >> Gary, Bless you for taking him!
>> >
>> > Why? I wanted a cat, this was one way of doing it. I'm not someone who
>> > collects cats for virtue points.
>>
>> Because the cat was a stray, asshole. lol
>
>> > You're writing as if you know me. Do I know you by some other name?
>>
>> You said you had a cat, asshole. And you adopted a stray. That says
>> catman
>> to me.
>
>>
>> Got much of a chip on your shoulder there, Gar?
>
> *plonk*
>
> --

I'll take that as a "yes."

:D

22brix
December 6th 06, 11:59 PM
"Gary McGath" > wrote in message
...
> Update: Haydn was actually playing with me just now when I was petting
> him, purring and rolling over. But he still won't take a step toward me.
> I think he actually likes me, he's just afraid of something.
>
> --
> Gary McGath http://www.mcgath.com

That's great--like the other posters have said, it just takes time. It's a
really good sign that he's purring and rolling--sounds like he's going to do
fine.

Bonnie

Rhonda
December 7th 06, 08:53 AM
That's great news! Sounds like he's coming around.

Don't worry about taking the step towards you yet, he needs more time to
trust his surroundings. Patience is really going to be a virtue with
this kitty.

Rhonda

Gary McGath wrote:
> Update: Haydn was actually playing with me just now when I was petting
> him, purring and rolling over. But he still won't take a step toward me.
> I think he actually likes me, he's just afraid of something.
>