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Unread 04-14-2016   #1 (permalink)
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Default Cat-on-cat aggression

Hi everyone. My wife and I have five cats, they are all rescues, and two came my wife's old neighborhood. The first cat we rescued was Sagwa, a male cat who was trapped in a tree in the neighborhood. We finally coaxed him down and took him in. After we got our own place we adopted two more. We eventually we able to catch another cat from the neighborhood, Tommie, a declawed female cat who my wife had been feeding over the years. She was picked on for years by neighborhood cats and was pretty roughed up. The first three, we had for almost two years before the addition of Tommie. About three years later, (last winter) a fifth cat was added.

Our situation is that Sagwa is picking on Tommie. It seems to come and go in phases but when it's happening he will stalk her, jump on her, keep her from getting food, and run her out of the littler box, or prevent her from getting to them. The food and litter boxes have been in the laundry room, with only one way in and out via the kitchen. We tried moving food and a litter box to another part of the house, which worked somewhat. She was able to get access to them, but Sagwa was still jumping on her. We tried moving the extra food and litter box back into the laundry room and now the attacks and stalking have gotten worse again. Sagwa shows no aggression or dominance toward any of the other cats, not even the latest addition from a few months ago. He is only aggressive towards Tommie, and it has persisted off and on for a few years. It has reached the point now where my wife has locked him in a room to keep him away Tommie. All cats are spayed and neutered. Does anyone have any advice for how we can remedy this situation and get the cats to coexist peacefully? I am growing desperate for answers and advice. Thank you.
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Unread 04-15-2016   #2 (permalink)
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I would definitely advise you to keep litter boxes and food in at least two separate areas.

Installing a few feliway diffusers around the house may help, too.

Has Tommie been to the vet? Often a cat is picked on when she is ill, because she is perceived as weak and vulnerable.

I especially urge you to have her paws and body x rayed as the declawing may have left her with long term chronic pain. She could have bone pieces in her paws, or claw regrowth under the skin. She most certainly will be suffering from arthritis in her legs and back from the crippling effects of the declaw.

I would have blood work done and a urinalysis too, to cover all the bases.

Diet is important in behavior management too. Many people don't realize that, but cats eating a high carb dry diet don't feel their best physically. They are chronically dehydrated and their bodies aren't meant to have so much carbohydrates, they are designed to have a diet high in meat, fat and moisture. It can cause a lot of stress.

I don't know what you feed of course but if you are feeding a dry diet I would urge you to learn more about feline nutrition and start transitioning them all over to an all wet diet. Ideally low carb wet foods only, .

You'd get your best results from going to a raw diet, but I don't want to freak you out right off the bat! But many multiple cat households have reported great improvements (not cure-all, but improvements all the same) going raw.

However even getting them on a wet diet so they are properly hyrdated can make a difference. Especially if you aim for pate foods which are lower in carbohydrates.

So that's where I'd start, keeping in mind that some things will be a long process. I'd get her to the vet rather quickly though.

It will be causing Sagwa a lot of stress to be shut up all the time so you may want to consider rotating them in and out of the safe room so neither is shut up all the time.

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Unread 04-17-2016   #3 (permalink)
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Default Cat bullying

I have a similar situation. 4 cats - 2 large 8 yr old males, 1 medium 14 yr old male, 1 tiny 14 yr old female. All of the boys bully the female, even though everyone is fixed. Now the female got attacked badly the other day to the tune of $600 of surgery. I don't want her back with the boys to risk this happening again. I am getting a very large cat hotel to make for the female so I know she is safe. Does anyone have experience with this? I intend for her to be in the cage when the boys are out and put her in the cage when the boys are closed up. Any ideas would be helpful. Thanks.
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