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Ask Dr. Michael Salkin Your Own Question
Dr. Michael Salkin
Dr. Michael Salkin, Veterinarian
Category: Cat Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 24454
Experience:  University of California at Davis graduate veterinarian with 44 years of experience.
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I took my cat (a ragdoll) to get some work done on s teeth,

Customer Question

I took my cat (a ragdoll) to get some work done on his teeth, extraction and cleaning.
Now that he is back home again, his 'brother' is hissing and growling at him. He even took a swipe at him.
What's going on?
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Cat Veterinary
Expert:  Dr. Michael Salkin replied 1 year ago.

It does seem silly, doesn't it? But it's not unusual. Aggression not uncommonly arises when a cat has been out of the home and then returns (e.g. from a groomer or veterinary hospital stay). This may be due to pheromonal alterations (pheromones are chemicals that transmit information between members of the same species), anxiety or discomfort of the returning cat, or the response of one or more cats that remained in the home to some alteration in how the cat looks, acts, or smells upon its return. There may also be territorial and status issues that need to be re-established, even if the departure has been relatively short. Many of these problems are mild and will resolve themselves over time, particularly if there is enough space, perches, and hiding places for the cats to avoid interactions while they again "recognize" each other and re-establish a compatible relationship. This may take anywhere from a few hours to a few weeks for some cats, while on rare occasions the problem may be sufficiently intense to require a formal reintroduction program of desensitization and counterconditioning in much the same way as a new cat is introduced into the household. I have advanced training in feline behavior. Please respond with further questions or concerns if you wish.

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