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Hello, this is Dr. Bruce and I would like to help you with Carl.
How long ago did you adopt Carl?
about a week ago
Are you able to see where he is in the ceiling?
we were able to see only when we--ready for this?--tied two long wooden spoons together and then tied my phone to the top of the spoon and filmed around up there. we could see him in the shot when we filmed. but without doing that, no. he's very far up
Does he seem ok there? Alert, not in distress, breathing ok?
in the video (which we took yesterday) he seemed fine. he was just sitting/lying down there. don't know how he is doing today though...
OK. So he is probably not ill, just scared.
he's been up there for quite some time now...two days including the day that he was just on the top shelf, but hadn't gone up to the ceiling
and he was fine up until then when it was horribly windy out
There are a few things I would recommend. Get a bottle of feliway. Feliway is a synthetic pheromone which is very helpful to calm down cats that are stressed out in new environments. Use this spray around the bathroom. when Carl smells it, it will help relax him.
I would also put out some very stinky food, like tuna flavored wet food. You should put it in the microwave for 10 seconds or so to warm it up and make it even smellier. Put it out on top of the cabinet so that he doesn't have to come down very far to eat. Put some water up there too.
I have heard many times from clients that have had similar experiences with newly adopted cats. Most of the time the cats will hide under the bed or in a closet, but the ceiling or the top of a cabinet is also a place cats like. The only time I worry is when the cats are not healthy. Then the hiding can be for other reasons besides being nervous about a new environment. By the way, you can get Feliway from most Pet supermarkets.
should we be worried about him not eating/drinking?
You need to be very patient with cats like Carl. He will come out when he is ready. You definitely don't want to try and force him out unless he is at risk.
ok, as long as we have nothing to worry about
I wouldn't worry about the eating/drinking. Just make it easy for him to get the food and water by putting near his hiding place. Eventually, you should be able to move it into a normal place once he decides that he is not in danger.
thank you so much
You're very welcome!