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S. August Abbott, CAS
S. August Abbott, CAS, Own Animal Care/Rescue Org.
Category: Cat
Satisfied Customers: 7621
Experience:  Up to 300 cats saved each year; Animal Care author; Behavior & Nutrition Consults
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can a cat kill another cat

Customer Question

I have a male neutered cat, BIGGLES, approx. 5 yrs old. He has shared my home with his 4 siblings, 3 male & 1 female, all fixed. About a year ago I added an additional 4 cats to the house - 1 female, 3 males - all fixed.   Last month or so BIGGLES has shown intense aggression toward the newer female cat. He chases her around - out of view, we'll hear her almost make a screaming sound. We have to frighten him away from her. She is very sweet and docile, and normally so is he. But together, he terrorizes her. He is allowed to roam outside, as is she (and the others) in a confined, safe place. Can this older cat kill my younger female? Should I be woried about her safety? Thus far she hasn't really been wounded, not even a visible scratch.
Submitted: 11 years ago.
Category: Cat
Expert:  S. August Abbott, CAS replied 11 years ago.

Neutered and spayed cats don't typically act this aggressive. Even more unusual is that a 'male' cat would try to harm a 'female' (especially since both are neutered), even if they were still intact.

With this considered, there might be behavior problems produced by too little space, lack of privacy or over-used litter boxes. It sounds like you've got 8 cats (or more?) in one home and unless this is a very, very large home, it could be acting out due to overcrowding.

I'd suggest thinning the society by about half, but I understand if you feel strongly against this. Sometimes it's difficult to put the animal's needs above our own and it may take you some time to make the right decision.

Until then, try increasing the availability of clean litter boxes and perhaps try to keep these two on different feeding schedules or in different parts of the home as much as possible. Put their food dishes in totally separate rooms.

It may also be necessary to have the aggressive male checked for disease or disorder which may contribute to such acting out and could be rather serious if left untreated (or undiagnosed). Tell your vet about his behavior and your concerns that perhaps a hormone imbalance is at the root of it.

I know what it's like to love cats like this , but honestly, I also know what it means to love them enough to let them go. These days, running a cat rescue, I have to do that all the time

Please let me know what you do and how it goes ok?