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Cat fights - all of a sudden

Discussion in 'Cat Chat' started by nmw01223, Feb 9, 2020.


  1. nmw01223

    nmw01223 PetForums Newbie

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    We have four cats - 7, 5, 3 and 1. All rescue or stray. The elder two Bustopher and Mungo (male) were both stray and just moved in 4-5 years ago. Very friendly (with us, not generally other people). Mungo dotes on Bustopher.

    Teaza (3, female) was born in a rescue centre, 5 months old when she came here 3 years ago. Lena (1, female) also rescued, was different. Living rough (pregnant at 4-6 months), was picked up by the rescue centre, had 5 kittens, all now rehomed, then came to us at just under 1, 3-4 months ago. Very nervous at the start, is now friendly and likes playing with us and the other cats - or did until three days ago.

    We have now had three cat fights involving Lena, the latest an hour ago, and what happened then was typical: Lena is tiny and Mungo is a big cat - but a wimp. She was playing with Mungo, lying on her back waving her paws at him, he was playfully prodding her. He saw an opening and playfully jumped on her.

    She totally flipped and went into full attack mode - no play at all. She chased him all around the house before we could separate them, trying bite and scratch him. They are now separated, he is very subdued, she is back to normal and wants to play again. The other two are a bit twitched.

    This is the third time in three days. For the previous 3-4 months they have got on fine, now this. We are at a bit of a loss.

    Lena at some point, before we knew her, had a very nasty injury near her eye which led to an abcess and scar. Whether related to that or not, it seems that something triggers some old bad event in her life a bit like PTSD does, she flips and changes totally. Then changes back again.

    Any suggestions on how to address this would be welcome, as permanent separation is undesirable and difficult. We have Feliway in place, but are pretty stumped on what to do to change this.

    STOP PRESS:

    Mungo just got through a door by mistake, was walking quietly towards another door, Lena saw him and flew at him.
     
    #1 nmw01223, Feb 9, 2020
    Last edited: Feb 9, 2020
  2. Rufus15

    Rufus15 Banned

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    In my view, serious aggression can never be managed by anything other than a split household or rehoming the aggressive cat to a cat-only home. She has gone through things that no kitten should be put through, it would be little surprise that she has trauma. If it a very serious and aggressive fight, I would strongly advise rehoming her to a single-cat home
     
  3. nmw01223

    nmw01223 PetForums Newbie

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    Thanks for your reply, realise that might be the only way in the end. Trying to see if there are other options - up until three days ago there were no problems, she wasn't aggressive at all, liked playing with all of them, especially Mungo.

    Jackson Galaxy talks about going back to square one and trying to reintroduce them again?

    Just realised another odd thing: she was calling as some cats do when in season - but she's been speyed.
     
    #3 nmw01223, Feb 9, 2020
    Last edited: Feb 9, 2020
  4. Rufus15

    Rufus15 Banned

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    Perhaps get her back to the vet to check for retained tissue
     
  5. nmw01223

    nmw01223 PetForums Newbie

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    Yes think you are right. Will take her tomorrow.
     
  6. Psygon

    Psygon Yoshi Tonks! :-)

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    Could something have happened that's changed the balance in the house in the last couple of days? Are there any new cats in your area?
     
  7. nmw01223

    nmw01223 PetForums Newbie

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    Not that we are aware of. She is kept in at the moment anyway due to not having figured out cat flaps. Cannot think of anything that has changed.
     
  8. Psygon

    Psygon Yoshi Tonks! :-)

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    It wouldn't necessarily have to be a cat that she is meeting outside, from experience I know that it can happen because of cats just seen through windows (we had aggression and fighting between two of our cats about a year ago due to a tom cat who was using our garden as a thorough fare. Our cats are indoor only, but just seeing or hearing the cat outside was sparking problems between two 7 year old cats who were litter mates).

    I think it's sensible to take your girl to the vets and make sure there isn't an underlying problem. But until then you may need to keep them as separated as possible. I would try and go through reintroduction steps with them though, play with high value toys, treats etc
     
  9. nmw01223

    nmw01223 PetForums Newbie

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    OK. Don't think there are new cats but we'll check. We'll try the reintroduction (slowly).
     
  10. Psygon

    Psygon Yoshi Tonks! :-)

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    I meant to ask, you mentioned there had been multiple incidents and the latest one was between Lena and Mungo. Have all the incidents been with these two? Or has it involved the other two as well?
     
  11. nmw01223

    nmw01223 PetForums Newbie

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    Almost all those two:

    Lena has always been the aggressor. Though having said that Teaza doesn't like her much and has chased her a bit in the past. Generally Teaza avoids her.

    Fight 1: Lena and Mungo playing on the sofa, Bustopher asleep on the same sofa. They roll over into Bustopher who wakes up, mildly raises a paw, Lena then goes for Mungo.
    Fight 2. Not clear, but Bustopher and Teyaza shot into one room while Lena pursued Mungo into another.
    Fight 3. Lena and Mungo playing on the floor. Mungo playfully pounces on Lena who turns and goes for him.
    Fight 4. Lena spots Mungo walking by and just goes for him.

    So pretty much those two. Not intending to let there be a fight 5!
     
  12. Elsiebea

    Elsiebea PetForums Senior

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    I hope you get a desired resolution to this. I’m following as my two who have never been best friends but have mutually tolerated each other have also started to turn their occasional playing into aggression.
    Could Lena be unwell(in pain?) but doesn’t show it and takes it out on mungo.
     
  13. Tigermoon

    Tigermoon PetForums VIP

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    It could be that Lena is fine until she feels trapped or believes she is about to be attacked, so she gets in first whether it's the required response or not. Its possible that splitting then slow reintroduction might work but if the fights become too frequent or the relationship between the others starts to break down then it would be best for all concerned for Lena to go to a single cat home.

    How long ago was she spayed? It can take several months for the hormones to completely settle down and a cat can be feisty until they do. But if she's showing signs of calling I'd definitely get that checked out.
     
    chillminx likes this.
  14. nmw01223

    nmw01223 PetForums Newbie

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    Elsiebea: she ill or in pain? Don't know, doesn't show anything but then cats often don't. Taking her to the vet today for a checkup. How old are your two?

    Tigermoon:Think she was speyed about 6 months ago, but not totally sure. What is so odd is all was absolutely fine until four days ago. There's also no warning, no 'stop that or I'll have you', it is like a light switch - bang. We are hoping rehoming isn't the only way and we really don't want to because apart from this she is a lovely little cat, but if it is, then it is.
     
    #14 nmw01223, Feb 10, 2020
    Last edited: Feb 10, 2020
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