How JustAnswer Works:
  • Ask an Expert
    Experts are full of valuable knowledge and are ready to help with any question. Credentials confirmed by a Fortune 500 verification firm.
  • Get a Professional Answer
    Via email, text message, or notification as you wait on our site.
    Ask follow up questions if you need to.
  • 100% Satisfaction Guarantee
    Rate the answer you receive.
Ask Dr Scott Nimmo Your Own Question
Dr Scott Nimmo
Dr Scott Nimmo, Small Animal Veterinarian.
Category: Cat Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 19522
Experience:  BVMS, MRCVS. { Glasgow UK }
10315041
Type Your Cat Veterinary Question Here...
Dr Scott Nimmo is online now
A new question is answered every 9 seconds

We have a 1 year old cat, Cisco, that we love to pieces, and

Customer Question

Hello,
We have a 1 year old cat, Cisco, that we love to pieces, and he seems to really love us....most of the time. He's not a cuddler, which we wish he were, but our problem and serious concerns is that he frequently shows signs of aggression towards us, especially my husband. He seems to hide, then jumps out and bites and claws, drawing blood. I notice his pupils are usually enlarged during these attacks, but not always. Something set Cisco off this morning as I was having my coffee, and he just started starring at me then leaped full blown claws out onto my lap....biting and clawing my hands.
When he was younger and did this alot, my husband smacked him with the remote control. Not hard, but it left a lasting impression, as now, Cisco bites at the remote any chance he gets. I explained how you should never strike an animal, especially cats, but my husband doesn't understand.
Cisco seems happy all day long sleeping, looking out the window, plays with his toys. He doesn't use his scratching post as much as the chair. I just sense something is wrong and not sure how to correct it now. And when we go to bed, we now have to lock Cisco our of the bedroom because he claws up underneath the bed, or jumps on my husbands head or bites at his feet...hard. We can't get him to lay down. He has now dug up the carpet at the door, even though I barricade it with his scratching posts and toys.
I hope you can help or suggest what we can do.
thank you
Sally
I sincerely ***** ***** can help, or I'm afraid I will have to find another home for Cisco which would break my heart.
Now, I have this huge problem. He's ready to get rid of him.
Submitted: 7 months ago.
Category: Cat Veterinary
Expert:  Dr Scott Nimmo replied 7 months ago.

Hello and welcome,

This is just a quick note to let you know that I am locked on to your question and am working on it now.

I am a small animal vet with many years experience with cats and rest assured I will do my best to answer your question to your satisfaction today. You can expect a written reply sometime within the next five to ten minutes or so.

We also have the option to talk things over by telephone or via an internet service such as Skype. Please get back to me if this is more convenient for you. { There is a small extra charge for phone calls }

Regards,

Dr Scott

Customer: replied 7 months ago.
I'll wait for your email reply. thank you
Expert:  Dr Scott Nimmo replied 7 months ago.

No problem Sally, just typing out your answer now ...

Regards,

Dr Scott

Expert:  Dr Scott Nimmo replied 7 months ago.

Hello again Sally,

I can really sympathise with what you are going through, however I have worked out an answer for you below which is based on my own experience ...

1. Aggression like this is not uncommon with cats, they are by nature predators and as house cats they only have their owners to interact with so in a way it is not surprising that this sort of behaviour occurs, but with the right approach you can often get it under control.

2. I experienced just this sort of behaviour { and much worse } a few years ago when I picked up an injured young cat from the streets of The Philippines and I now have him at home as a house cat. My solution was to buy a large pump up water pistol with a very strong water jet and squirted the cat the moment he tried to attack or showed aggression in any form. I always kept the water pistol handy and Peter { my cat } stopped this behaviour in about a couple of weeks. Now as he is getting older he is a much more docile and affectionate cat but if he is showing signs of any unwanted behaviour all I have to do is to show him the water pistol and he backs right down and behaves

3. In your case you just have to show Cisco that you will not tolerate this behaviour without of course causing him any physical harm. Cats have no sense of cause and effect so you have to discipline him at once, right in the act of his aggression in a way that he cannot avoid. Hitting him with the remote was turning it into a two way confrontation, on the other hand a very powerful water pistol will put the fear of God into him in a way he cannot avoid or understand.

I hope I have covered your question fully enough but if you would like further clarification or to talk things over a bit more then I will be on-line for the next hour or so and I will be more than pleased to continue working with you.

Regards,

Dr Scott

Please be kind enough to rate my service to you after we have concluded our dialogue, such feedback helps me maintain the quality of my answers.

Customer: replied 7 months ago.
Thank you for your reply. Sorry I didn't get right back to you but we were just heading out the door to dinner last night. I have heard of the water bottle before and will certainly give it a try. Any thoughts on why he is clawing up the carpet other than the obvious that he wants in the bedroom with us? I will keep a water bottle in there as well and maybe that will help with that problem. I've just never had a cat like this one before. He's so sweet when he's sleeping. Any thoughts on when we're in the car? He hates it and cries the whole time. I appreciate your input.
Expert:  Dr Scott Nimmo replied 7 months ago.

Hi Sally,

Pleased to talk things over with you further.

1. Probably best not to use a plain water bottle since the water jet will not be that strong, the danger is Cisco may not be too much concerned about it, the clients at my clinic had the best success with a one of those pump up toy water pistols which have a very powerful water jet.

2. Clawing is a natural cat occupation and must serve some useful function for wild cats, this is a much harder habit to break for domestic cats. If it is confined to just one location you could try just saying no and giving him a squirt with the water pistol, most cats will eventually learn. Other than that you can provide a scratching post there. If he is doing it to be with you then there is not much you can do I am afraid.

3. Lots of cats hate cars, I guess if you took him for a short ride each day he would eventually be more calm, and some vets prescribe sedatives for car journeys, but again this is a hard one I am afraid.

Regards,

Dr Scott

Please be kind enough to rate my service to you after we have concluded our dialogue, such feedback helps me maintain the quality of my answers.

Expert:  Dr Scott Nimmo replied 7 months ago.

Hello again,

I am just checking back in to see how Cisco is getting on after our recent dialogue concerning is aggressive bouts ...

Please get back to me and let me know how things are going.

Regards,

Dr Scott

Please be kind enough to rate my service to you after we have concluded our dialogue. Such feedback helps me maintain the quality of my answers.

Related Cat Veterinary Questions