my cat might be bi-polar and i dont know what to do. he will purr and lay down for ten seconds and then jump at me. just a few minutes ago he was staring at me so i stared back and he didnt back off. he made a slight hissing noise and non-stop he attacked me back to back. he was really fast to i blocked him with the pillow and it made him even more mad so he kept going. this is not all of the time but when he does this it is a huge problem. i really dont know how to deal with his random aggression anymore. please help
Pet's Gender: Male
Pet's Age: <1
Name of Cat: orion
walking away, putting him in the cage, hold him with a towel over his head to calm him down, distract him with his toys (which i feel like he's being rewarded for bad behavior), try to ignore him and shoe him away from me with a small pillow or clapping, rewarding good behavior with treats and a clicker.
Hello, and welcome back to Just Answer.My apologies that you did not receive an earlier answer. Different Experts are online at various times; I just logged in and read your question. Your patience is greatly appreciated! How old is Orion and how long have you had him?Where did you get him from?Has he always behaved like this or is this aggression something new?Is Orion an only-kitty with no other pets in the house?Is he neutered?Are you the only one who interacts with him in the household?When was his last vet visit?Thanks for all your additional detail, enabling me to send you the most complete answer.Regards,CherJessesmom41086.8219359144
he randomly attacks everyone but i am around him the most so i get it bad.it doesnt seem like play though. i know sometimes it is play but todays attack was personal and he seemed very angry. i had him since he was 8 weeks old he is now 15 weeks. he is neutered. he is the only cat but he has lots of toys that he enjoys. he went to the vet two weeks ago.
Hi again, Isis and thanks very much for your reply with additional and helpful information about Orion.From your description, it does not sound like he is bi-polar, nor angry. This is how kittens play and this is how they play with each other (siblings/mom) practicing their instinctive 'stalk, hunt prey, pounce' skills. Lucky YOU, you are most likely his favorite human because you are with him the most, so he considers you as a 'littermate' to play these games with. In his kitten mind, he is not doing this because he's angry with you--just the opposite--he wants you to play back, but unfortunately, you don't have teeth and claws, like felines do and you are not able to play or play-fight back, without getting hurt. Orion does not understand this.When you described this last interaction, I would recommend making certain adjustments to lessen the 'attacks'. First, do not stare him down. You will not win! : ) By staring and not looking away, he considers you a challenge and will attack, as he did. Also, if you are petting him and after a few seconds or a few minutes he attacks, he is becoming 'overstimulated', which means that the petting is almost feeling painful. He wants you to stop, so he attacks. Look for the following signs, when you're interacting with him and he's calm and purring, in anticipation of an attack: eyes narrowed, ears back, tail swishing quickly back and forth, or slapping on the ground. If you are not sitting next to him and you see the signs above, plus, he will usually get low down to the ground and wiggle his rear end, he's about to pounce. This is what cats do in the wild and it's just a 'built-in' instinctive behavior.Because Orion has no other felines to interact/play fight with, you can enrich his environment so he's not bored. If you might consider adopting another kitten close to his age or a few months older, this might solve the problem, but this depends on your personal preference and situation.Young kittens are a bundle of non-stop energy, as you already know. When they are not cat-napping, they are constantly on the move. It would be great to have a tall scratching post and/or kitty condo that has multiple levels, 'shelves', and 'hidey holes' for him to climb, play and sleep on, if you don't already have one. Also, cats love being up high; it makes them feel safe. Make sure he has plenty of toys that you can throw for him and he can play with by himself. A foraging toy would be great for him. Here is an example:http://www.pawswhiskersandclaws.com/pwc%20foraging.pdfAlso, play with him with a laser pointer and a fishing pole toy (only use the fishing pole toy when YOU or another adult is playing with him, as pieces can be bitten off easily--then put it away where he can't get to it). Let him catch it a few times, but bounce it back up before he can chew on the feathers or elastic.My cats love the 'Kickeroo', toy and many other toys by a company called 'Fat Cat'. Look for these in your major pet supply stores or other stores like Target, Walmart, Kmart, etc. in their pet departments. http://www.cattoys.com/kong-kickeroo-cat-toy.htmlhttp://www.shopfatcat.com/cattoys.htmlRewarding Orion with a treat for good behavior/playing gently and nicely is great, but make sure the treats are cat-healthy and don't overdo it as most treats are high in calories.The best punishment for him when he becomes too rowdy, is to either remove him from the room and put him in a room with a closed door, just for a few minutes, or you can leave the room and go into another room with a closed door. Only do this for a few minutes, but if you are consistent, he will learn that he would rather have your company than not.The methods you've used so far, except for walking away, which is great, to stop him from attacking, I would not recommend continuing. Do not put him in his cage/carrier and do not put a towel over his head. You don't want him to associate the carrier (I'm assuming that's what you mean by 'cage') with something negative, when you need to bring him to the vet, etc., and the towel over the head is not necessary in this case. Shooing him away with a pillow or any other object is an invitation to 'play', so don't do that anymore or it will encourage him--he's thinking: "Oh, yay, it's play with the pillow time!"There are three over the counter products that might help him feel a little calmer, but keep in mind that he will outgrow this wild, constantly energetic kitten behavior as he matures. Feliway is a cat appeasing pheromone which helps cats feel calmer and less stressed. It's available in most major pet supply stores. Rescue Remedy for Cats is a homeopathic calming remedy which is also sold in pet stores, natural food stores and online. Composure Liquid is similar to Rescue Remedy for Pets, but only use one of these, not both at the same time. However, you can use the Feliway with one of these oral calming remedies because Feliway comes in a spray or plug in diffuser. Here is more detailed information on all 3 products:
i understand about playing but he has a bunch of different toys to stimulate him and i do these already. there are also times where i am sitting at the table and he comes behind me purrs and rubs against me and without me moving or touching him he digs his claws in my back. he never used to bite my mom because she spoils him and while she was laying down he jumped on her and started biting her. he shot up my grandfathers body while he was standing and bit him in the face. and hissing at me does not sound like playing. there are also times when he attacks me while laying on my lap purring and i havent even touched him. is there any other quick way i can fix this. its to the point people dont want to come over.
Hi again, Isis and thanks for your reply with more information about Orion's behavior.You can have people over, but you will need to lock Orion in another room with food, water, litterbox and toys. Unfortunately, there is no 'quick fix' to the problem you describe, but the next step I would recommend, considering your description of the types of attacks he's perpetrating on other family members, is a vet visit and discussion with the vet regarding a prescription calming medication. But, before you do this, please try the over the counter calming remedies I recommended in my previous answer.I completely understand your frustration with this problem and I've encountered it with many cats of all ages. Some will grow out of it and some will remain with this personality all their lives. My daughter has a cat who is 6 years old and lashes out at people for no reason (he's done this from kittenhood--except with his human 'parents'). When she has people over, he must be locked up in another room. There's no rhyme or reason why a cat may act this way (except the ones we've discussed), unless there is an underlying medical problem causing discomfort/pain. It doesn't sound like this is the problem with Orion, from your description, but a vet visit (although he was seen recently) is still your best option at this time to rule out any underlying medical problems. I'm sure you understand how changeable and fickle feline personalities can be, and the situation you describe will require behavior modification, over the counter calming remedies, patience, and possible prescription medications to help him act more calmly.My positive rating (faces numbered 3-5) from you, means a lot, so I can receive credit for my effort and work. Please do not leave me a negative rating if we weren't able to provide a 'quick fix' to your problem with Orion. This problem will undoubtedly take some time and many other cat experts will agree.I'd appreciate it if you would please keep me posted on how Orion is coming along. Just click 'Reply' at any time, to let me know.I do hope things improve, soon!Best regards,CherJessesmom41086.9053365741
Feline Healthcare & Behavior Specialist 40+ years Experience