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Advice needed on personality change

Discussion in 'Cat Training and Behaviour' started by eeem1, Jul 11, 2018.


  1. eeem1

    eeem1 PetForums Newbie

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    I’m really worried about my cat. He’s normally very affectionate - loves being outside but comes in the house every few hours or so meowing and seeking attention. He normally sleeps on the bottom of my bed every night.

    I recently went on holiday for 9 days and since I’ve been home he’s a different cat. He will only come in the house if I pick him up and bring him in. He’s eating less and has lost a bit of weight. He’s grooming excessively. I’ve fleaed him so I don’t think it’s that. Normally I would just attribute this to the british heatwave we’ve had. But the strangest thing is his new found hatred of the hallway. He’s ok in all other rooms but as soon as he leaves he runs SO fast down the hallway and out of the cat flap without stopping. Tonight I tried giving him some treats to lure him along the hallway but when he got about half way down his leg started twitching and then he legged it down the rest of the hall and out of the cat flap. This makes me think it might not be in the hot weather.

    I’m really worried and miss having him in the house! Any advice would be appreciated.
     
  2. ChaosCat

    ChaosCat PetForums VIP

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    Hi @eeem1 and welcome to the forums!
    It does sound like he had a fright in the hallway. How was he taken care of during your absence? Maybe the care taker can shed a light on it.
    How does your boy enter the house? Is there a cat flap through which another cat might have entered? Then he will feel threatened in his very own safe area. A microchip reading cat flap would prevent that, if you haven’t got one already.

    My first move would be cleaning the hallway thoroughly, also use an enzyme cleaner- there might be smells for your cat that your nose doesn’t catch- and maybe decorate a little differently, maybe place a scratching pole or scratching board there your cat likes, a nice cardboard box to lure him there...
     
    chillminx likes this.
  3. eeem1

    eeem1 PetForums Newbie

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    Thanks for your reply!
    He was looked after by my house mate. She’s looked after him before and obviously lives at the house so nothing unusual for him. The only thing she said happened was that he was locked out in the communal hallway one night.

    He has a sure flap all singing all dancing cat flap but it’s rubbish and I haven’t been able to get it to work for a while. I’ve contacted the manufacturers and they’ve given me some instructions on fixing it so I’ll have a go at that.

    Cleaning the hallway is a good idea. My neighbour has a proper carpet cleaner so I’ll give that a whirl too.

    Thanks for your advice
     
  4. chillminx

    chillminx PetForums VIP

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    I should think being locked out of his home for a night must have given him a big scare, especially if there is nowhere in the hallway for him to hide away for safety.

    I think he is now making a negative association between the hallway and his ordeal of being shut out. Cats are excellent at making associations between one event and another, but sometimes they get it wrong.

    I would make sure the cat flap is working properly, so there is no way he can ever get shut out of his home again. Sureflap has excellent customer service and will replace faulty chipped cat flaps without demur. Can you say what is the problem with your cat flap?
     
  5. eeem1

    eeem1 PetForums Newbie

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    I’m not sure he would have been frightened being locked in the communal hallway. This is separate to our hallway that he’s now scared of. He loves being in the communal hallway, there’s lots of places for him to explore and a big leather chair he loves sleeping on.

    His cat flap has just never connected to the ‘hub’. It’s one of the ones that you can use with an app but because it didn’t connect to the hub there were a couple of instances where the cat flap wouldn’t open so I disconnected it to make sure he could get in and out. The batteries lasted about a week when they should have lasted 6 months. It’s in warranty for another month so definitely need to sort it out!
     
  6. chillminx

    chillminx PetForums VIP

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    Oh I see, there are two hallways! I'd thought there is only one, from your post. o_O

    So to clarify, there is the communal hallway where he was shut in overnight, and your own separate hallway where he now behaves like he is scared.

    Presumably as it is your own hallway then you, your housemate, and your visitors, are the only people who have access? Or have you had any tradesmen coming in to do work? Could anyone have come in while you were away, and frightened the cat?
     
    kittih likes this.
  7. eeem1

    eeem1 PetForums Newbie

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    It’s possible my housemate had friends round but my cat is normally very sociable and loves being the centre of attention. Even if I’ve accidentally stood on his tail before he sulks for 20 mins but that’s about it. I’m cleaning the carpet today and have booked a vets appointment for next week if there’s no improvement :(
     
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