Why has my cat suddenly become very aggressive towards me ?

Discussion in 'Cat Training and Behaviour' started by katie815, Apr 15, 2012.


  1. katie815

    katie815 PetForums Newbie

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    I have two cats - both are 7 years old and we've had them since they were kittens. They have always tolerated each other and only ever play fight. The one - called Kitten - has always been the friendlier of the two, always so playful and happy. Then a few months ago, we brought a lost kitten into the house and Kitten went absolutely crazy, she screamed and hissed and wouldn't let anyone near her. She calmed down the next day but then a week ago she saw another cat through the window and she resorted to the exact same behaviour...three days later, she calmed down. Now yesterday, I was upstairs in my bedroom playing with her and she was purring, licking me etc and then she saw that my other cat had come upstairs and she hissed and when I tried to touch her she went mad again. Now she's hiding anywhere she can find and whenever she sees me or senses i'm in the room she screams and hisses and makes a violent swiping motion with her paws. It's like she really hates me - all I have to do is be in the same room as her and she just screams at me like she's scared of me, but I don't know what I've done. This has happened three times now in the past 5 months and the last two times have happened in the past week...she's still not calmed down at the moment. I don't know what to do, I'm so upset...I keep thinking if she remains like this or keeps having these mood swings frequently we're going to have to give her away. Can anyone tell me why she is behaving like this and if there is anything that can be done? Thank you.
     
  2. chillminx

    chillminx PetForums VIP

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    Can only think for her behaviour, as an adult cat, to change so suddenly and dramatically she is either feeling ill, or else very upset about something.

    Her behaviour sounds territorial. Have you still got the lost kitten? If so
    I would imagine that is the source of your cat's volatile behaviour.

    If you just have your 2 original cats then I can only think your cat felt very threatened by you bringing in the kitten, and since then feels so insecure she fears you bringing in another cat. Hopefully in time she will learn she can trust you not to do so.

    Have you got a catflap? If so, best to make sure no strange cats can get in (or are getting in) to undermine your cat's feelings of security. The microchip operated ones are excellent for keeping out everyone but the rightful occupants. :)

    Then there are the usual things such as Feliway Diffuser, Feliway Spray, catnip toys etc to calm the cat down.

    Also, it might be best not to approach your cat but let her come to you. You could entice her with play (using a wand toy e.g.) and cat treats, but do not get hold of when she is near you, just give a gentle stroke if she seems relaxed.

    Getting a cat to play is very useful for distracting them from being annoyed or upset -- cats are just like kids in that respect.:D;)

    Could it be that she is not well? Have you noticed any other physical symptoms that are unusual for her?
     
  3. Treaclesmum

    Treaclesmum PetForums VIP

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    Maybe she can smell something on your clothing that she is scared of? Mine were scared of the smell of my shampoo once!! :eek:
     
  4. katie815

    katie815 PetForums Newbie

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    No we haven't still got the lost kitten we brought into the house - it belonged to the people living across from us and we returned him the same day. But this was about 5 months ago and my cat has been okay since then, well up until last week when she saw a black cat through the front window. But she just hasn't calmed down. She does for a few minutes, like this morning I woke up and she was on my bed, purring and stuff, like nothing happened. So I gave her a cuddle, went for a shower, came back and she was cowering on my bed hissing at me. The same thing happened a few hours later...she seemed calm so I stroked her, then she saw my other cat and went mad again. Now I've just come home and she's lying on my mums bed with my mum but when I went near her she growled and hissed so I've just left her. I'm really upset, I love her so much, and she used to love me and now she just seems so frightened and annoyed with me. I mean she could be ill, but it all seems to have come about from seeing other cats. If she continues I'll see about taking her to the vet. Thanks for your opinions !
     
  5. Treaclesmum

    Treaclesmum PetForums VIP

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    Aww no, sounds like she's quite anxious about other cats and needs some reassaurance. Don't know what could've caused it but could it be a memory that she has? :confused:
     
  6. katie815

    katie815 PetForums Newbie

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    I'm at a loss for what to do. She was okay again last night...after she'd hissed at me on my mum's bed I left her alone for an hour, then when I went back upstairs she was on my bed and she let me stroke her and cuddle her and she licked my hand etc. Then when I got up this morning and went downstairs, the first thing she did when she saw me was hiss and scream like she was in pain, then she ran outside and is now hiding in the bushes, hissing if anyone goes near her. Do you think its worth taking her to the vet ?
     
  7. chillminx

    chillminx PetForums VIP

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    I understand you being worried -- her behaviour sounds quite alarming:(
    Definitely sounds like the way a cat in pain behaves....Does she go out? Could she have been injured outdoors ?

    Is she OK with your mum? I mean, not hissing at her or running away from her? If not then it would suggest it is something about you your cat is objecting to doesn't it?

    Have you been grooming her loads (with it being moulting time of year) and perhaps she dislikes it a lot and is running away and hissing to stop you doing it?

    Or, as a previous poster has said, could it be the scent of your shampoo or shower gel or perfume she doesn't like? You mentioned your cat was fine with you one morning but when you came out of the shower she was upset with you. Bit of a longshot, but how about switching to a scent-free shampoo and shower gel such as "Simple", for a few weeks, and leaving off perfume for a while, to see if it makes any difference at all.....

    I think I would have her checked at the vets though, as she could have an injury not immediately apparent. I remember one of mine hurting her leg jumping off the garage roof:eek: :( She limped a bit for a while, but the vet couldn't find any skeletal damage luckily. But I could not pick her up for about 2 months as she cried if I attempted to.

    Has she been eating normally and is her poo normal? Is she weeing more than usual?
     
    #7 chillminx, Apr 17, 2012
    Last edited: Apr 17, 2012
  8. katie815

    katie815 PetForums Newbie

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    Well she seems to be calmer around my mum but she still hisses and stuff, and won't let my mum touch her. It's just so weird. I came home just then and the cat was sitting on the kitchen table chair, and she let me stroke her, then I picked her up and she hissed so I put her back down...then 5 minutes later she ran behind the kitchen units and hissed and screamed at me. She keeps doing her business all over the beds as well, my mum says she'll have to be put down if she keeps doing this. I'm beside myself, I have no idea whats wrong or what I can do. I suppose I can take her to the vet but what if there's nothing they can do, it seems to be a mental problem with her.

    And yes she does go outside but only in the back garden, she never wanders off anywhere else. She's mainly an indoor cat. And I rarely brush/groom her. This is all seems to have happened when she saw that cat through the window but I don't know why something like that would make her behave so wild for over a week !
     
    #8 katie815, Apr 17, 2012
    Last edited: Apr 17, 2012
  9. chillminx

    chillminx PetForums VIP

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    Your cat is obviously very distressed. Getting so upset when you pick her up and then running and hiding all suggests she is in pain and that it hurts when you pick her up. It might not be due to a physical injury, but could be an internal problem, such as bladder or bowels.

    I am sorry but I just don't think it is purely mental or emotional -- something else is going on....

    A big clue is the fact you say she has started weeing on the beds. Although this kind of inappropriate toiletting can be due to stress it can also be due to a urinary tract infection. It needs investigating by the vet as soon as possible. If your cat has cystitis she will be feeling utterly miserable. It is a horrible illness to have, as you will know -- if you have ever suffered it. If a cat is in terrible pain every time she wees she will likely choose something soft to wee on.

    No vet would agree to put a cat to sleep just because they were weeing on beds, as there are easy practical ways for you to prevent her weeing on the beds. i.e. you must shut your cat out of the bedrooms, and sitting room, anywhere there are soft furnishings until the problem is diagnosed and sorted.

    If it is completely and utterly impossible for some reason to keep the cat
    out of the bedrooms, then put large plastic sheets across the beds for the time being (e.g. waterproof mattress covers will do) and then put an old sheet on top if you want to hide the plastic. The cat may still wee on the beds but at least there will be minimum damage and you can launder the sheets easily enough and wipe down the plastic with a Pet Urine Odour/Stain remover.

    If the vet finds your cat does not have a urine infection and having checked her over thoroughly finds nothing physically wrong, then I suggest you ask to be referred to an Animal Behaviourist, but it should be one who will come to your home and observe the cat's behaviour, and advise you.

    What breed is your cat btw?
     
  10. anotheruser

    anotheruser PetForums Senior

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    OP, just as a tip... you should paragraph things out a bit more.
    I saw your rather large block of text and skipped on reading it. However I did read some of the replies as they were more inviting to read.
    You may also get a better response this way :)
     
  11. katie815

    katie815 PetForums Newbie

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    She's no particular breed, just a plain old moggy I think.

    Yes she will definitely need to go to the vet, it seems very likely she is ill but her behaviour is so on and off. Like this morning she jumped up on my bed and started to purr but when I got up later, she was hiding in the bushes again hissing at me.

    She seems to be okay in the late evenings and early mornings but not in the time inbetween.

    and she only does her business on the beds when she runs upstairs scared because she can't get outside, and the first thing she does is jump on the bed, then when I go near her to try calm her down she growls and then urinates everywhere.

    A trip to the vet is definitely in order !
     
  12. chillminx

    chillminx PetForums VIP

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    Very pleased to hear this Katie.:) Please let us know what happens?:)
     
  13. katie815

    katie815 PetForums Newbie

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    Update:

    We didn't take the cat to the vet in the end because the same day after my last post, she was fine and continued to be fine up until today.

    Like I said, she's been normal for the past week, and last night/this morning she slept next to me on my bed and has been purring and playing all day. Then when I went to pick her up earlier I accidentley stepped on her tail and she's gone absolutely mad again.

    She's currently on top of the kitchen units screaming and going to attack me whenever I'm in the kitchen, even if I'm just making a cup of tea. It's terrible. It's got to the point where I'm just crying in frustration because I honestly don't think she's ever going to be the same again, and I hate that she's so angry at me for no apparent reason.

    We will definitely take her to the vet sometime next week, my mum said she will make an appointment tomorrow, because we just can't handle this anymore - I know the cat is obviously very scared and possibly very ill but it's awful to not be able to go anywhere in the house without her growling/hissing at you and going to attack you.

    If anyone has any ideas on other reasons why she might be behaving this way I'd be so appreciative ! I'll definitey let you know what happens at the vets, which is a definite go now she's resorted to the same behaviour :(
     
  14. arta123

    arta123 PetForums Newbie

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    Hello!! please please could you write an update about your cat??
    i have a similar problem and i don't know what to do!

    i am devastated. Three days ago my loving but shy cat of 4 years has turn to a very aggressive cat. And i don't understand what happened. The doorbell rang and a friend came gave me something and then left(my friend didn't even came through the door). When i closed the door my cat took a sniff of my hand and since then she hates me.

    I can't get close to her or touch her. She looks like she is scared of me.. In the mornings she is calm, comes to my bed and follows me around until i give her her food. After that she begins again to hiss and growl and scream loud at me. She sometimes also plays with me but when i try to go just a bit near her she hates me again.

    She doesn't attack me or bite me or scratch me... she just stands there with her ears back and screams at me..even when she hides under the bed she hisses at me when i walk by.

    Now i just try to ignore her so that i don't stress her more. I am starting to be scared of her and and don't know what to do.

    I called the vet and said that maybe acupuncture could help and also gave me Feliway to try but it really doesn't do anything.

    Please help me!:(:(
     
  15. Treaclesmum

    Treaclesmum PetForums VIP

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    Your cat has obviously detected a smell on you which she is scared of.

    I don't think acupunture could help with that!! :eek:

    The best advice, apart from Feliway, would be to clean everywhere and use some odour remover, to get the scent off you and your house. She is just scared of something she can smell - does your friend have a cat of her own?? :confused:

    And what was the item she gave to you - maybe you need to spray some odour remover on the item or put it away in a cupboard!
     
  16. arta123

    arta123 PetForums Newbie

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    thank you for your answer. well my friend does have 2 cats of her own. and she gave me a key. just a metall key... but i don't understad how could the smell of the other cats be still on me after 4 days..is this even possible?!! :-(
     
  17. nightkitten

    nightkitten PetForums VIP

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    Try changing all the soaps and washing up liquid in your house. She may combine one of these smells with the incident of your friend coming round. So the smell of the other cats may not be on you anymore but she has transferred the fear of other cats to a different smell.

    It's a long shot but buying different soaps etc does not cost the world and is maybe worth a try?

    Have you tried rubbing cat nip on your hand and see how she reacts then?
     
  18. arta123

    arta123 PetForums Newbie

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    hello,

    i haven't thought of that but i will definitely try it

    i haven't tried catnip because i have noticed in the past that she becomes crazy possessive with catnip so i was a bit scared of trying that.

    I have tried to play with her with her favorite toy. She does play with me but i can see her eyes are very stressed.

    Today she let me touch her just a bit. She seems as if she is slowly accepting me but i don't know if later she will change her mind again...:confused:

    I am also thinking of taking as second opinion from another vet...acupuncture doesn't really convinced me..
     
  19. Summersky

    Summersky PetForums VIP

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    Bit obvious, but any contact with dogs? Via boyfriend, firiend or workmate perhaps? She might be reacting to doggy smell perhaps.
     
  20. arta123

    arta123 PetForums Newbie

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    no, none of my friends have a dog. I live alone so nobody came in the house but me..:confused:
     
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