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Needy cat

Discussion in 'Cat Training and Behaviour' started by polly2, Mar 2, 2019.


  1. polly2

    polly2 PetForums Newbie

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    Hi there, our cat is becoming increasingly needy as she gets older. The minute we sit down, she wants to be on our lap and wines like crazy when we stop her. Sometimes it is nice to have her on our lap but not all the time especially as she paddles and sticks her claws in. She's a nightmare around food and meows for more even when there is food in her bowl. We've had her checked at the vet and there is no obvious reason for her behaviour. Does anyone have any advice?
     
  2. chillminx

    chillminx PetForums VIP

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    Hi @polly2 -

    How old is your cat? Cats do become increasingly in need of our care and reassurance as they enter their senior years. They no longer feel as strong and fit as they used to feel and this affects their independence and can make them feel anxious and insecure.

    Has the vet carried out a recent full blood count and a urinalysis, to check for any of the common feline diseases of older cats? Or for a possible infection? And have her teeth and gums been checked (as she is becoming fussy about food)?

    Cats find it harder to sheath their claws as they get older. Some of my senior cats lost the ability altogether to sheath their claws which meant their claws caught in blankets, on my clothes etc..

    I suggest getting her claws clipped once a month. If you can do it yourself with some pet claw clippers just make sure to take only the sharp pointy bit off the ends of the front claws. Don't go down as far as the 'quick' or it will be very sore for her. If you are unsure, ask one of the nurses at your vet surgery to do it, it won't cost much as you will not be consulting the vet.

    Then get some fabric with tight threads e.g. an old folded cotton or polycotton sheet might be good. Fold the sheet to make a "lap blanket" and place it on your lap before she sits on you. Persuade her on with treats if necessary. (note : do not use a towel for a lap blanket as it is too easy for claws to get caught in).

    What foods are you feeding her? It may that she no longer finds the foods she has always eaten to be appetising or digestible. Is her output in the litter tray normal - formed firm poos passed every 24 hours and nice big pees?

    It may be that nothing has yet developed that will show on any blood tests or urinalysis, but more that she doesn't feel quite right in herself. A change in diet (done slowly), claw clipping and plenty of TLC might be all that is needed for now. :)
     
    Jackie C, polly2 and Quartermass like this.
  3. polly2

    polly2 PetForums Newbie

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    This makes sense. She is around nine years old. I don't know for sure as she chose us and we adopted her after she visited us several times emaciated and battle scarred.

    No but she didn't feel it was massively important. Perhaps I should push for this to be done. We have pet insurance.

    She has whiskas wet food. We've tried her (gradually) on many over the years and this is the only one she'll eat. She isn't eating quite as much. We used to go through 6 tins a week but now more like four. She only wants to eat when we are in the kitchen but is happy to hoover our plates or try to steal ours! Pee is normal and number 2 though she loves chucking her litter everywhere.

    Thank you, some great advice. I think a visit to vets may be in order.
     
    chillminx likes this.
  4. chillminx

    chillminx PetForums VIP

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    @polly2 - I agree a vet visit would be a good idea. If she is really only around 9 yrs old she is still in the prime of her life and it would be unusual for her to have a chronic illness of old age. That would be more likely to affect her from about age 12 onwards.

    I wonder whether she is in fact several years older than your vet has estimated. She might be lucky to have very good teeth, the teeth of a younger cat than her real age. The state of the cat's teeth is usually how vets estimate their age.

    The loss of ability to sheathe their claws properly tends to start to happen in the teen years, maybe 13 or 14 onwards. That is why I assumed she might be an older cat.
     
  5. Jackie C

    Jackie C Cat slave

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    Great advice from chillminx!

    At 9, your cat isn't old, maybe she is older than you think. If she's not wanting to eat, she may have bother with a sore mouth or teeth. She may be in pain from something. I would take her to the vets again for a second opinion. She may be generally feeling sorry for herself, and wants you to reassure her. She obviously loves you very much.

    Chillminx is the resident expert on here, so I don't have a lot to add. But I sometimes make a lovely chicken broth for Holly. It involves boiling up some chicken thighs in plain water for about an hour. Allow it to cool, then carefully remove all the bones and shred the chicken. The broth makes a lovely nutritious light soup, and obviously the chicken is tasty and nutritious. You don't need to add anything more, (unless it becomes her main diet, then you have to add vital minerals a cat needs).
     
    chillminx likes this.
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