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6 yr old cat HELP!

My wife and I adopted a now 6 year old cat and we're having a little continous trouble with her. We were informed she had kittens and was spayed a year prior to our adoption and they were a bit unsure on how she reacts with others. We've now had her for going on 2 years in January and we are still having a few problems with her. We are huge animal lovers and absolutely have no idea what to do at this point. In the beginning she will bite or scratch us and we would work with her on making her as comfortable as possible and over the time period of us having her she began to calm down with the inital biting and scratching. In the past few months it is getting a bit more intense and we're getting nervous on what we should be doing for her. She's bitten myself quite harshly leaving a mark and with the most recent one I believe it's gone too far. She clawed and bit me so hard the bleeding took a while to stop and caused scaring that is quite sensitive. We comfort her as much as possible however, we have 2 puppies and we're unsure of that being the issue. We are planning for a pregnancy quite soon and we cannot continue having this occur to either of us especially with a little one on the way. She's been around little ones before and she wasn't an issue however, with her being aggressive towards us is there any advice on what we should be doing at this point? I understand it sounds like she may be in a harming enviornment however, I can solely promise you she is not. We are strong lovers for fur babies and love to help making them feel at home so with her acting this way we are at a complete loss.

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Community Manager

Re: 6 yr old cat HELP!

[ Edited ]

HI PuppyLover22. Thank you for sharing your question and welcome to the community! I am a cat parent myself and have experience in dealing with felines who scratch and bite sometimes. Like every animal, cats have different personalities but that doesn't mean you can't find ways to deter these negative behaviors. Here's an article with tips for How to Train a Cat to Stop Scratching

 

To avert your cat from scratching you, make sure to provide a few scratching posts or other cat furniture. These range from simple cardboard boxes that come with catnip to more elaborate ones covered in carpet. Each time you see your cat scratching on her scratching post, reward her with praise. Give her a scratch behind the ear or a treat once in a while. When she starts clawing you, give her a gentle but firm "no," and redirect her attention by playing with her. Do this a few times, and they will get the message. They key to training your cat is consistency! 

 

You may also want to check out this article with 6 tips on how to make your cat feel at home. I hope this helps!

Alex Cat Very Happy

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Occasional Contributor

Re: 6 yr old cat HELP!

Sounds like she is either a feral cat, or scared. Either way her bite inhibition is out the window; not good. An animal that bites to the point of causing bleeding/scars is a very serious issue indeed. You need to consult an animal behaviorist.

Trimming the nails might take the edge off, but I'll bet she wouldn't go for it. Positive reinforcement might help. NEVER punish this cat, as I guarantee it will backfire. No scuffing, no hissing, no yelling, no hitting, nothing negative. Make your home and yourself as positive as can be. Hand feed, soothing voice, gentle petting, fun playtimes, averting your gaze, "catify" your space (integrate your cat into your home) etc.

Watch Jackson Galaxy episodes to get some good tips. Diffuse essential oils such as lavender, chamomile or ylang yang. Give the cat plenty of hiding places. Include high towers and scratching posts. Hope this helps.
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