Dr. Nicholas Dodman wrote an awesome book about cat personalities and
problems, including aggression towards housemates and people. It's
called "The Cat Who Cried For Help", and addresses situations like
yours.


-----Original Message-----
From: Diane Rosenfeldt [mailto:drosenfe...@wi.rr.com] 
Sent: Thursday, March 24, 2011 6:46 PM
To: felvtalk@felineleukemia.org
Subject: Re: [Felvtalk] FW: Keep Cats Indoors

My housemate and I were faced with such a decision 10 or 11 years ago,
when we moved from our separate apartments to our formerly-two-flat
house, and melded our cat families. She had two, an elderly lady named
Kitty and a pugnacious orange boy named Tribble. I had 3 -- my laid-back
Luc, my introverted fluffy tortie Phoebe, and my mom's black girly,
Missy. Tribble had always deferred to Kitty when they lived together,
and continued to do so, thank goodness. But as time went on and our cat
population changed a little, Tribble showed quite a bit of aggression,
and we had to take somebody or other to the vet to have bites treated at
least twice. So we were in a real bind, since we are both
cats-are-family-for-life people, and we did love Tribble with all his
peculiarities. We knew nobody would adopt him anyway. We are both
anti-declaw and had the raggedy furniture to prove it, but we decided
that for the safety of the other cats we would have him declawed,
feeling maybe he would lose some aggressiveness, and also that he might
still be able to bite, but he wouldn't be able to dig in and hold on
while he did so. We found the one place in town at the time that did the
laser technique.

We were worried about all the things mentioned -- the pain, the litter
problems, the behavioral problems. But he really seemed not to mind,
even during the first days. He was fine with the litterbox, and didn't
develop any behavioral problems above and beyond the ones he had going
in. He was still aggressive, but wasn't able to inflict nearly the
damage, which was mission accomplished as far as we were concerned. The
upside for him is that to this day he still tries to sharpen those claws
on furniture, wicker etc., and he's the only one that doesn't get shooed
away. I know we got lucky here, and that most cats suffer more, but if
we had it to do again we'd still make the same decision under the same
circumstances. It was either that or sentence Tribble to almost certain
death.

Diane R. 

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