Saturday, March 27, 2021

Not Easy Like Sunday

TBT HERE: "Houston, we have a problem".  That may or may not relate if you are young.  But it means there is a problem in The Mews world.

Laz came here as a rescue/socializing effort.  He had been in a home with 2 pit bulls and a couple of grabby children.  He was returned (retaken?) by the seller who breeds Siamese.  Laz is 1/2 siamese.  I don't know all the details.

Laz was traumatized by the pit bulls and the children.  The breeder gave him care and attention, but he wasn't exactly what she needed.  When Iza died, I contacted her to ask if she knew Tonkinese breeders like whom she had gotten Iza from.  She did not but had this poor guy who needed a caring home and she just knew I could provide it.  

I found an actual Tonkinese breeder but they were a year on a waiting list.  I accepted Laz from the other.  I wish I had not.  I had never failed with a cat before and I expected Laz would get used to a secure life.

I kept him in The Mews Room for a week, talking and singing nonsense stuff many times a day so he would get used to me.  I offerred comfort and safety.  I gave him peace and assurance.  He responded slowly.  Eventually, he stopped clawing at me and accepted head scritchies and chin rubs.  

I finally let him out of The Mews Room when Marley and Alya were outside so that he could wander around.  He seemed happy and calm after a few days of being around the house alone.

He seemed to adjust when I let him be in the house with Marley and Ayla.  Lots of sniffings went on, and no problems.  That's what I EXPECT from a new cat.  It is normal.

Then suddenly, Laz started attacking Ayla.  And I don't mean chasing and pouncing.  I mean claws and teeth!  Poor Ayla had scabs around her neck.  The attacks were random with no apparent cause.  I worked with Laz many times daily to calm him, assure him, and try to let him know he was safe here.

Over Winter, he seemed to calm down.  I thought he had accepted his Forever Home and his new cat family. I thought he had finally become socialized.  He is to ME.

I used Feliway.  I think it helped a lot.  Laz never attacked Ayla once in the past few months.  But he did again yesterday.  And I don't mean "chase and pounce".  I mean teeth and claws!  Ayla has scabs around her neck again.

I'm struggling here.  I've never failed with a cat, but I may need to give up on Laz.  I'm reluctantly learning that Laz is unrelentingly vicious toward smaller weaker cats.

An option is calming collars.  Do you know anything about them?  I've also heard about "chill pills".  Are those safe and do they work?

How about cat behaviouralists?  Any of you tried that?  

Because if I can't get get Laz to stop attacking weaker cats I am probably going to have to do something I have never done before with a cat.  Give up.

And that is so strange.  Laz gets along with me well enough.  He isn't a lapcat, but he spends the night curled up next to me.  If he was an "only cat", he would be great.  But I think he needs to be an "only cat".  I personally like him, but we aren't a one-cat family.

Can anyone take in an "only cat"?

Caturday Saturday

LAZ:  I caught a birdie a few days ago!  I was SO thrilled.  I never caught one before.  I was innocently sitting under the birdfeeder and it just landed right in front of me.  Well, what's a kittie ta do?  I grabbed it.

I ran right up on the deck bring it inside ta show TBT.
But he closed the door.
Its not like it was still flappin or anything.  He knew that.  He came outside.  He said "dock-human-tashun: but I don't know that werd.
I played wif it a LONG time.  An then I ate it.  I pulled the fevvers off, cuz they weren't tasty.  I ate all the rest.

TBT here:  Laz caught his first bird.  I wish it hadn't been a goldfinch; we have invasive  sparrows I would miss less.  And he caught another goldfinch the following day.  Now he just sits under the feeder waiting for another.  He has a lethal streak.  I wish I could orient him to voles, and maybe with the warmer weather he will start to find them.  We have too many voles here.

I'm of 2 minds about this.  Regarding the birds, nature favors the very slightly smarter ones.  Laz has probably caught 2 of the careless/dumber ones.  I've noticed the remaining ones (and there are many in my organic semi-wild yard) are quicker to leave when they see Laz.  I help by clapping my hands sharply when Laz goes out (which makes them scatter and stay alert).  And he never caught one before now after months of getting outside.

The birds likely became careless (or new ones inexperienced) last year.  Marley can't jump like he used to, and Ayla seldom goes beyond the deck stairs these days on the rare occasions she steps out at all.

Laz started going outside late last Summer.  And in the months between, he not only never grabbed a bird, he seemed uninterested.  So when he caught one I was surprised.  And I expected it was a one-off.

When he caught a 2nd, I realized he had a new hobby that I did not desire.  I laid down cut brambles around the ground around the feeder.  That didn't bother the birds at all but at least it kept him a few feet further away.  He hasn't caught one since that I know of.  

Laz is very agressive and has a lethal streak.  More about that tomorrow.