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"?