View Full Version : help, my oldest cat is a bully
01-20-2004, 02:37 AM
I have three cats and they are about 6 months apart in age, and we got them within three months of each other. the first cat ignored the youngest cat for the first year we had them. now its almost been five years, and the oldest is being a bully to her. what can i do, iv tried the spray bottle of water and the dosent work, yelling at her dosen't work, i even tried reverse psycholigy on her and it dosent work. The youngest cat is so intimated by her that all she has to do is see her and she runs. the middle cat gets along with both. Snowey
01-20-2004, 08:03 AM
Here are a couple of tricks that I've used in my multi-cat household:
Feliway plug ins work for some people. They give off a phermone scent that is calming to many cats.
Cats are scent oriented. Try rubbing vanilla extract on each of the cat's chins, behind the neck and at the base of the tail (on their back). If they all smell the same, they are sometimes less threatened.
By a tall cat condo or cat tree. Cats are territorial by nature and sometimes just need their space. Do all the cats have areas that they can claim as their own in the house?
Make sure you have at least one litter box per cat.
Spraying water at them rarely helps. It simply threatens the cat and makes them fear you.
Lastly, behavioral changes could be a sign of illness. Cats will sense when another in their household is sick which can trigger unprovoked attacks. When is the last time you have brought them to the vets? I would suggest that you start with the one being attacked, and if she checks out, the attacker.
You definitely do not want to ignore this. This can lead to a level of stress where one or more may stop using the litter box.
01-20-2004, 09:11 AM
I like that plug-ins idea. How did you figure that out?
01-20-2004, 10:08 AM
These are all excellent tips, I use them all at one time or another.
Should none of these work, it reminds me of a cat I used to have, a spayed female who became neurotic after constant bullying from a newer male (also neutered, all of my pets are neutered asap)
She became so anxious she grew to hate all the other cats, even those she had loved in the past. Her potty habits were fine unless any other cat approached her, then she would eliminate on the spot. Her clawing of woodwork and furniture became habitual where it had never happened before.
I consulted a behavior specialist and was told she should come for evaluation and possibly *kitty prozac* Unfortunately that meant a 2 hour round trip weekly and a whopping bill that I could not afford.
I tried rehoming her with a person she loved who had no other cats. That worked fine until she took a dislike to the 17 year old son, and all neurotic behavior started again. She was reluctantly returned to me.
My only option at that point was to keep her downstairs in my grooming shop, totally away from any other felines. I felt terrible that she no longer got the attention she deserved, but there was no other recourse. If she was sitting in the window or if I was to groom a cat that day just seeing another feline caused her to defecate anywhere. I usually had to prepare for a cat entering the shop and lock her in the office. :(
The sad end of that story is she escaped outside on day. I found later that she had been picked up by the pound, kept for a long time, and whether she found a home or was euthanized I have no idea.
This is the only time in my life that a cat's behavior problems totally defeated me.
I hope you have a better outcome.
01-20-2004, 06:24 PM
OFC: I'm so sorry to hear about your baby! You are describing the house pariah. I have one of those right now - her name is Shep. This is actually a fairly common phenomena in a multi-cat household.
Shep is one of my few inside/outside cats. Now that she is considered "ancient", she no longer wants to go out. I have made up her own space in a spare bedroom. Got an enclosed cave like bed, her own litter box, food and water bowls. When cats enter, she hides from them and everyone is fine.
She has recently moved into the kitchen with the puppy (yes, on the counter). Since no one else is allowed up there, she is fine, and the puppy still thinks the cats are his littermates so he tends to keep them out of there.
Sometimes all they need is there own little space in the world. When Shep goes, Oscar will be the pariah. The signs are already there and I'm trying to give him his own space in the house.
01-21-2004, 07:13 AM
Hi Snowey and welcome :)
I hope you're kitties get along soon.. great tips guys!.
01-21-2004, 08:15 AM
Welcome Snowey. We are starting to have a similiar problem with our three office cats - so I also may be using those great tips shared above.
01-23-2004, 02:18 PM
I agree with what has already been said, having 11 I also have a couple that like to bully but lucky for me no real problems have arisen from this. Hope you can get some harmony going there.