Monday, October 23, 2006

Cattitude

Some explanation may be in order. Bonnie's blood work is normal, by the way. We are concerned that Bonnie isn't the same cat she was before Victor arrived, and that was nearly a year ago. It's not just that she doesn't get along with Victor - that's not surprising. It's the other habits that have changed.
  • She used to sleep on our bed almost every night; now Victor does and Bonnie never even tries.
  • She used to spend time in the living room watching birds out the window; now she spends very little time in that room.
  • She used to supervise my morning routine and enter the bathroom frequently for water from the tap. Now, after nearly a year, she has hesitantly returned to ask for tap water. If Victor enters the room, she tries to leave immediately. He gets excited and pounces; she runs for the computer room, hissing all the way.
The biggest change is toward us.
  • We used to be able to pet her. Now, she growls and hisses at us. Sometimes, I just walk past her and she growls.
  • I used to be able to pick her up, but now I wouldn't dare.
The only room she hasn't given up is the computer room, and there she almost acts like her old self. She spends most of her time there and even tolerates Victor in that room. They seem to treat the boy's room as neutral territory, though it looks more like a war zone.

On the other hand (or paw),
  • Bonnie eats from any food dish and mostly tolerates Victor eating from her dish.
  • They take turns eating treats from my fingers, though Victor mustn't crowd her.
  • They both sit at the top of the stairs, a few feet apart, monitoring anyone at the door (Bonnie sits in plain sight while Victor hides around the corner).
  • And they both use both litter boxes.
So, we feel Bonnie is still upset or anxious. At first, she would lash out at Victor, and he would roll over submissively. Bonnie would run away and Victor would shrug and continue to do whatever he wanted. He didn't try to take our bed from her; he jumped up and made himself comfortable. Bonnie jumped up, hissed in his face, and ran away, so Victor stayed. He's won territory simply because she surrendered it! Now, Victor doesn't bother acting submissive. He pounces her and chases her, ignoring her noisy complaints. Victor means her no harm and wouldn't mind sharing the bed, the bathroom, the sink. If we could tone down Bonnie's over-reactions just a little, she might learn to accept the situation and become a happier cat.

So that's where we are with Bonnie. And Victor needs his teeth cleaned. Is there such a thing as too many Temptations?

Now for a game of Where's Victor? He's been hiding from the cold weather a lot lately.
Where's the cat?Beware the Paw!

Here he is!Victor 4

Where's the cat?Snowpants with a Tail?
There he is!Victor the Snowpants

34 comments:

  1. Honestly, that sounds alot like Max and Buddah, even the growling. He's just now getting back to where he seeks out a lap to sit on for more than a few minutes, just now sleeping in his bed, and I haven't heard him growl at anyone other than Buddah for a few weeks.

    We got Buddah almost a year and a half ago. They exist together and sometimes will curl up together on top of their tower, but Max does not *like* Buddah and I don't think he ever will. As long as they don't try to kill each other and occasionally seem to conspire to gang up on us, things should be ok. Hopefully it's just a matter of more time for Bonnie to accept Victor isn't going anywhere and being mad is helping...

    Thumper (owned by Max & Buddah...)

    ReplyDelete
  2. You two really sounds jus like me an Angie. We efun sit togefur at the top of the stairs like you and I rolls ofur fur Angie till I finally chase her around.
    It took Angie six months to finally sleep on the bed though and that's coz Mom started putting her there. Maybe if you keep puttin her on yur bed she'd be able to share it as her territory too.

    ReplyDelete
  3. Sounds ALOT like our house too! I have had all three girls on the bed with me, at one time. Kinda scary for me though. ;-) Nobody has really lashed out at me. Although, Meeko & Kiara still don't really get along, and they've been together for 4 years now, even before Emmy came into the picture. I have been adding some homeopathic kitty calmant to the water bowls. It *seems* to help some. ie: the fighting doesn't sound AS bad. I think I bought it at Petsmart or PetCo. It's called "Calm Down!" You might try that? Good luck!

    We use Temptations Dentabites...that might help with the teeth.
    ~Becca-Momma to Meeko, Kiara,& Emmy

    P.S. Emmy sends purrs to Victor!

    ReplyDelete
  4. We furgot to mention that Mom tried Feliway, an it had no effect on Bonnie. Maybe the water drops. If Mom tries to pick up Bonnie to put on the bed, Bonnie howls like a banshee an can't get away frum her fast enuf. At least she doesn't meow herself horse anymore. (Bonnie, not Mom!)

    PS purrs back to Emmy.

    ReplyDelete
  5. We hopes that time will help Bonnie get back to her old self.

    We loves the pictures, Victor!

    ReplyDelete
  6. Being an only cat I can't help. But I agree with the keeping warm part.

    ReplyDelete
  7. Oh Bonnie. My cattitude changed when we got rosie. It was quite a diffurent situation. I was the dominant cat and Rosie was the quiet one. Sometimes I still get vary ruff with her but my lady gives me a time out and it's ok. -Cheeto

    Owr lady wishes she culd give gud advice to yer lady about how to make yoo feel more comfortable arownd Victor and most importunatly arownd yer peeple. I'm most worried about the fact that yoo are not letting yer peeple pet yoo or pick yoo up. Goodness, I wish I culd give gud advice to help out yer peeple. -Rosie

    ReplyDelete
  8. Sounds quite a bit like Catzee and Me. When she first got here I was very indignant and though I perked up some to play chase with her, my behavior changed in other ways. Problem now is, whenever I want to be friendly she thinks I'm going to hiss at her so she's immediately on the defensive. Sometimes I do hiss, or growl. But then she is a 100 mile an hour Cat unless she's sound asleep.

    ReplyDelete
  9. my boyfriend karl's old cat, "red dog" was a one cat show too. red dog had the run of their place until one of his roommates got a new kitty. red dog never got along with this high-energy kitty. red dog was only happy outside or upstairs, which was strictly her turf. her anxieties manifested in generally being grouchy and periodically licking all her belly fur off. when karl and i moved in together several years ago, red dog became a solo show again (and she had to become an indoor kitty) and she finally got back to her old self. red dog actually became a warmer, more purry happy cat than she had ever been before. i am glad that she was able to really relax and enjoy the last couple years of her life as an only cat. i don't think she would have ever enjoyed the company of another cat--it just wasn't in her personality (during the 4 years she lived with another cat she got used to it, but never over it). i hope, for your sake, that bonnie and victor grow to enjoy each other's company, but i don't know if i'd expect it to get better after the year that they have spent "warming up" to the idea. good luck!!

    ReplyDelete
  10. That's pretty much the situation here. Punkin was an only kitty for 6 years then Zippy came along. Took 3year for them to stop "fightning" (eg:Zippy wanted to snuggle and Punkin would have nothing to do with her). Then almost overnight they became friends, I think it was the calming of age with Zippy. When Punkin went to the bridge Zippy seemed to actually mourn her loss. When we brought home Sadie a few months later Zippy hated her, after about 6 months they tolerated each other. Then came Speedy and now Sadie and Speedy are friends, have been from day one and Zippy, after 6 months is starting to tolerate them. Oh, and every new kitty that has come into the house has claimed the bed. Now none of them will sleep there-lol. They all prefer to sleep in there own beds.

    ReplyDelete
  11. I hope Bonnie returns to her own self. Hopefully she just needs some time. Maybe you could encourage her to get on the bed with some treats? BTW, I was told by a "pet expert" that one cat is always dominant, and the dominant one usually does not cover his/her poop in the litter box. Is that TMI??
    Good Luck

    ReplyDelete
  12. Girl cats are just as territorial as boy cats even if they have been spayed. In our house Diamond is top cat and she will beat the living daylights out of any one if they put a paw wrong. Having said that we all kind of know our place and get on fine. Elvira can have little hissy fits but Diamond usually smacks her for that.

    I think you have a simple case of "solo cat syndrome" with Bonnie. Often this is the result of fussing over the new kitten and the old cat's nose gets put out of joint ... some times permanantly.

    Victor ... your hidey pictures are very cute!

    ReplyDelete
  13. I am glad to hear that physically Bonnie is okay. She may never get used to having Victor around. We brought Charlotte to live with us October of 2001 and Indigo still attacks her, and doesn't want her to be in the same room with her. It has gotton a little better, and the attacks are less frequent, but I don't think it will ever come to a complete end.
    Now on to one of my favorite web cats...Victor, you are the cutest thing ever, you look like you are just 24 hours of fun.

    ReplyDelete
  14. This is distressing for you, I know. You brought another member into the family, with good intentions, and Bonnie has just not been able to accept it. This may be the oddest suggestion ever, but I wonder if adding another calmer girl kitty to the mix might help.

    Turtle and Moose are both dominant types. Now that Moose is much bigger than she is, he pretty much runs rampant over her - not out of meanness - it's just his rambuncious personality. Having Nala here, who (thank the Lord!) is fine with being at the bottom of the pecking order, gives Turtle AND Moose someone to dominate. Nala enjoys playing chase with Moose (which means Turtle can just watch instead of get chased), but she is very submissive to Turtle, and they became great friends within a month or so. They frequently lay together and Turtle grooms Nala, too. (Nala was 6 months old when we adopted her.)
    ~ tammara

    ReplyDelete
  15. I'd lurve to haf anofur cat round who I could play wif an snuggle wif, but Dad says "No more. One was enuf." Mom & Dad tried not to make a fuss ofur me an tried to let Bonnie know she's still #1, but she wouldn't listen.

    Mom put Bonnie on the bed last night! She growled an hissed, then stayed on the bed a few minits growlin at nothin (maybe at me; I was outside the door). Then she ran off an I got the bed as yousuall.

    ReplyDelete
  16. Hi, this is NOT Bonnie. Nope.
    The obvious solution is to send the annoying cowcat away. Bonnie is the most beautiful cat in the world an I can say that cuz I'm NOT Bonnie.

    ReplyDelete
  17. Oh my! Poor Bonnie. You'd think after a year she'd have adjusted a little better. Can you spend time with her alone in the "neutral" room? Put Victor somewhere where she can't see or hear him and see if she'll let you near her without growling. Poor baby. Have you asked your vet for any suggestions?

    ReplyDelete
  18. Bonnie, er, Not-Bonnie, you're right, Bonnie is furry beautiful!

    I got no kinda advice or anythin', cause I'm an only kitty. But I hope that Bonnie will get back to bein' herself again.

    ReplyDelete
  19. We hope that with time Bonnie will be herself again. Luckily I have never encountered such a problem when adding a cat to my household. Bubbles and Mrs. B are not exactly best buddies, but they get long fine. Good luck and sorry that we coud not be of more help.

    ReplyDelete
  20. Oh poor Bonnie. It must be hard on bof of you. Some pursons and kitties may thinks this is an odd suggestion (but remember when "massage" was considered "out there"), but has your mommy ever tried an "animal communicator."

    My family used one for the first time when Sebastian (my woofie cousin) went over the rainbow bridge and his brofer Comet wouldn't eat or play or anyfing. She really helped Comet and he lived 2 1/2 years longer (when Sebastian was alive, he couldn't be without him for 5 minutes).

    Mommy called her a few weeks after she founded me and I wouldn't settle down. She helpeded mommy understand how to "talk" to me. Fur example, animals understand "dark" and "light" not "night" and "day." Also when mommy and daddy leave, they tell me they are going to "hunt and gather" since I don't understand "work." It really helped.

    We don't use her often, but mommy called the lady over the weekend to help wif my ear thingys (I wish mommy had called her sooner) and I'm feeling much calmer now. I'm playing and letting my beans pet me (I would hide before because I thought they were coming to mess with my ears or give me a pill.)

    The lady we use is a Tibetan Reiki Master and does it on animals and beans. Comet & Sebastian's groomer recommended her when she heard how bad Comet was doing.

    Just a suggestion, but the few times we've used these methods, they've worked. I'm crossing my paws for you.

    ReplyDelete
  21. Momma was thinking of something like an animal communicator or even find a cat behaviorist who could look at the body language of the two cats. It does sound like she's very depressed because she isn't doing the things that she used to love to do. That can be furry frustrating. Momma says it's take time for cats to get back to a routine but a year seems plenty long enough. Good luck. Purrs Bonnie.

    ReplyDelete
  22. Well, we talked at the party so you know I don't get along with Scout and it's been a year & a half. He was 6 weeks old when he came here. I also don't like to be picked up by humans. I yowl & growl when they do. They know I don't like it so they resist doing it even though they really want to. -Scooby
    Hi Bonnie's Mom ! Some cats take Prozac- Beau does and his mom says it has made a world of difference. I'd love to get a person who communicates with cats! There is so much I'd like to ask them.
    Interesting comment above about the dominant cat not burying his poop. Shaggy is top cat here and he does not bury it. I thought he was just being lazy!!! How interesting.-SSS's Mom

    ReplyDelete
  23. From Beau's mom: Beau had to be put on prozac because he was never the same after my place was broken into during the day while I was at work, and his hate for strangers just got worse. I would strongly suggest having a behaviorial consult with a vet who specifically deals with pet behavior. Also, the animal comminicator coming to the home is a good idea. A third suggestion would be going to the Purina Cat Chow website to the "ask a mentor" section and sending one to the behaviorist for their suggestions. But I would definitely have a behavioral consult and see if medication would help. Email me if you need to.

    ReplyDelete
  24. My mama's first cat here got along with her then roommate's cat, although they fought for a couple of weeks. Then they were best buddies. The roommate and the cat left, and she brought home another cat. They hated eachother. The first cat permanently licked her belly fur off being nervous. After she passed on over the bridge, I came along and became the alpha cat. Number 2 and I were never in the same room together, we ate in separate rooms, and only used one litterbox, and we were okay. But we just tolerated each other, and I let her be the lap cat. I don't know. I like being the only cat... I guess maybe spend some more alone time with Bonnie would help.

    ReplyDelete
  25. Mom giggled and squealed. With delight, as far as I can tell, although it's tough to know with beans sometimes. She said something that sounded kind of like this: "OhILoveThatPictureOfVictorInHisSnowpantsCostumeThat'sSoAdorableOhIJustLoveItHe'sSoCute." She hasn't stopped yet. That's my Mom for you. She likes cats who look like snowpants, apparently. Do you wanna come visit and show Mom your snowpants suit in purrson, Victor? Anyway, you two sound like me and Sanjee. Maybe we should trade? You think it would be an improvement? I'll ask Mom if she has any advice.
    ~~ Mini

    ReplyDelete
  26. When I brought Firenze home, Knightly was pissed. He was mad at me for about a year. Firenze has been with us for almost 6 years now and Knightly mostly tolerates her, sometimes likes her, and many times still pounces the crap out her (she almost always instigates it).

    For Lizzie, her trauma occured when I moved in with friends that had a golden retriever puppy that tried to play with the cats. Once I got my own place, I thought she would get back to normal. She has but it has taken over a year and a half.

    I guess what I am saying is give Bonnie plenty of time as it may take another year or more. I too tried the Feliway but it made no difference to the Monsters. Good luck!

    The Monsters' Mom

    ReplyDelete
  27. sounds like me an snowy. when he came to live wiff us i was the only cat wiff woofies. i fink i am a woofie too. but after a year we became best friends and then when we moved i didnt like him again at all. now i tolerate him again. the beans spend special time wiff me and make sure i know im special. im the only one allowed to change the sheets even. they shut the doors for me. that makes me feel very good. so i can tolerate the others. i dont like no one but snowy (and benoit cause hes submissive) but i know im loved so i love the beans.
    that may help. coddle bonnie and maked her feel special. i even gotted a new bed last week. just for me.

    ReplyDelete
  28. sorry i forgot to say this is from salem

    ReplyDelete
  29. oh, poor bonnie! we din't know it was that bad, dear girl!

    that's us meowers, only kinda in reverse. xing came into the house, an' she's the one with the problem.

    insteada bein' all, "hey, WE live here an' you gotta bow to US!", we played by the kitty rule book (for a while) and when she came outta solitary, we kinda looked at her outta the corners of our eyes, gave her a wide berth, an' just sniffed in her direction. well, efurry time she caught us even thinkin' at her, she screamed bloody murder, so mom or dad came runnin'. so we just commenced whalin' on her whenever we got the chance--why not? we got squirted even if we weren't doin' nuthin' but lookin'!

    she doesn't know how to play, either--she takes anything moving around as a threat.

    it's a year and a half since she came, & she's finally making some progress. she still squalls a lot and won't fight back (she'll take a swat at us, but then runs away).

    but she does at least come out into the living room when the rest of us are there. she will even jump up to get on mom's lap when one or more of us are already in the chair, but mom hasta keep a hand on her and keep reassuring her, and even then xing mumbles & growls if one of us looks at her. feliway didn't help any, but we are gonna try those drops.

    it's hard to say whether bonnie's reluctance to be picked up by beans is just feelings of betrayal, or whether she is on her way to geezerhood. did they x-ray to check for arthritis or other internal problems? it can hurt quite badly before they begin limping--ask nels. (also might explain not jumping up on the bed or to the window.) nels has begun taking glucosamine & chondroitin, and has not made any great leaps, but seems to move a bit better. we hope so.

    dear bonnie! we hope life gets better for you soon--mom & dad bean love you furry much, and want you to be your ol' happy self! victor's not a mean cat by nature, he's just too darn peppy for ya, and our mom can relate to that!! it's how she feels about the d*g, cocoa!

    ReplyDelete
  30. My agent says I've changed quite a bit as I've gotten older. Things I used to like, I hate now.

    Other than the growling, I think Bonnie is just getting older.

    And crazier!

    ReplyDelete
  31. It is the same here with Mittens and Patches. Patches thinks she rules the house and is always, still, after 6 years, chasing and picking on Mittens. The Little Runt, however, doesn't back down, and she (Patches) has no idea what to think. From reading other comments, you aren't alone.

    CalicoMom Toni

    ReplyDelete
  32. maybe we send you Grr an you send us Victor, kinda like a furr-en exchange program or a time-share. then we see if Bonnie hates all offur cats, or just Victor.
    Cocoa

    by the way - i duzzn't bury my poop! HAHAHA - I RULE!

    ReplyDelete
  33. Angel still overgrooms to the point of being bald on her legs and belly and rump. But she wanted a playmate desperately and though she pretends at times to not like Taz, I know she loves her to bits. I think she knew I was sad and I got sadder when I saw Angel go downhill and I know they sense that. I was upset that she didn't play anymore or sleep in our bed. But its over 3 years now and Angel sleeps right where she used to when she was the only child. Right by Daddy's head! Taz has taken up Daddy's feet. They "fight" now and then and only rarely does it seem like a "real" fight.

    I've been so tickled to catch Angel playing by herself lately too. Things are finally back to "normal" except for the overgrooming. Angel is still whiney, tempermental and neurotic, but she was like that before Taz too. Having her play again and sleep with us again tells me she's allright. I'd say it took at least 2 years. But, I know they LOVE each other. Taz tried to nurse from Angel when we brought her home! And Angel let her! I know they bonded.

    I wish I could find a cat communicator here too. One vet prescribed clomicalm (kitty prozac) but Angel just kept throwing it up. I didn't want to do pills. If we have to resort to them, we'll try again, but I couldn't stand putting her through that.

    I hope Bonnie will grow out of it and they'll somehow become best buds.

    the Mama

    ReplyDelete
  34. Sending you Good vibes from me and all the Good Cats that Bonnie and Victor get along better.

    ReplyDelete