You are either not logged in or not registered with our community. Click here to register.
 
December 10, 2016, 12:36:04 PM

Welcome, Guest. Please login or register.
Did you miss your activation email?

Login with username, password and session length

Click here if you are having problems.
Default Wide Screen Beige Lilac Rainbow Black & Blue October Send us your theme!

Hark!  The Herald!
Holiday Issue 2016

Wiki Blogs Dicebot

Author Topic: Cat problem  (Read 2296 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

Offline KurzykTopic starter

Cat problem
« on: April 03, 2011, 01:59:47 PM »
Wasn't sure if this is the right place to ask this question. But as I'm recently moving, i'm not sure what's best for my cat.

Im currently living in an appartment. The cat is 2 years old and was raised indoors. The first year she llived with two other cats and loved playing with them. The past year she's just been with me and playing/doing her thing.

Im moving to New York city, and while my dad is open to having a cat i'm wondering if I should give her to my ex wife and her family. They have a house in the country with two dogs and two cats, all used to living with each other.

My cat still has her claws and has no dog experience.

If I take her with me, she would be just with me for quite a long time and would be only an indoor cat. Her claws would be an issue, and while I could trim them every other week, her jumping on the furniture might be a little tough for my dad to get used to.

Or I could leave her with a family that's used to caring for animals.

My questions are, is 2 years old, old enough to learn about the outdoors for an indoor kitten?
If I had to, is declawing at 2 bad for the cat? Im just concerned for the other dogs. If she scratches them out of fear.... plus furniture etc.

I just don't know what to do for an indoor 2 yr old kitten in this situation. If I left her would she fare ok?

Offline Star Safyre

  • Mrs. Fyre or, if you're slightly more daring, O Captain my Captain.
  • Dame
  • Addict
  • *
  • Join Date: Aug 2010
  • Location: Beyond the flesh
  • He who is fixed to a star does not change his mind
  • My Role Play Preferences
  • View My Rolls
  • Referrals: 0
Re: Cat problem
« Reply #1 on: April 03, 2011, 02:13:26 PM »
The answer to this question really depends on your priorities.  Personally, we have chosen to have our cat live exclusively indoors.  I have had outdoor and indoor cats in the past, and I'm securely on the indoor side of things.

According to every source I could find, a cat living outdoors will have a decreased lifespan.  Between traffic, wild and unrestrained domestic animals, diseases and injury, I find little an outdoor cat could enjoy that would supersede these dangers.  Especially if your cat is shy at all and unused to strange animals, I wouldn't advise letting kitty be exposed to these things.

As for the furniture, have you consider declawing? Scratch pad training?  Decide what option might work best for you and your cat.  I had a cat declawed at over a year.  I'd ask your vet, but I don't think the cat's age has any change in outcome from the procedure.

Online Oniya

  • StoreHouse of Useless Trivia
  • Oracle
  • Carnite
  • *
  • Join Date: Sep 2008
  • Location: Just bouncing through. Hi! City of Roses, Pennsylvania
  • Gender: Female
  • One bad Motokifuka. Also cute and FLUFFY!
  • My Role Play Preferences
  • View My Rolls
  • Referrals: 3
Re: Cat problem
« Reply #2 on: April 03, 2011, 03:35:03 PM »
Both the Humane Society and the ASPCA are against declawing, especially if there haven't been any efforts to train out destructive clawing. Scratch-pads are highly recommended, and there are some that come with 'scent lures' to attract the cat to scratch there as opposed to other places.  You might also consider 'Soft Paws', that are basically nail-caps that you replace every 4-6 weeks.

Offline KurzykTopic starter

Re: Cat problem
« Reply #3 on: April 03, 2011, 03:41:01 PM »
Do vets put on Soft paws or do we? in other words, can you buy them or is it a monthly procedure type deal?

Offline Kuroneko

Re: Cat problem
« Reply #4 on: April 03, 2011, 04:17:40 PM »
Feliway spray is also a great deterrant for unwanted scratching. It mimics the pheremones that cats secrete from their chins when they rub.  Using it, and providing a scratching post and encouraging my cats to use it has prevented any furniture damage.  I personally could never declaw a cat.  It's basically the same as cutting off your fingers down to the first knuckle.   :-(  I trim nails weekly instead.  It's easy to do and cats get used to it.  I'm sure your kitty would too.  Your vet can show you how to do it, and/or how to put the nail caps on. 

I also second that indoor cats live longer.

Online Oniya

  • StoreHouse of Useless Trivia
  • Oracle
  • Carnite
  • *
  • Join Date: Sep 2008
  • Location: Just bouncing through. Hi! City of Roses, Pennsylvania
  • Gender: Female
  • One bad Motokifuka. Also cute and FLUFFY!
  • My Role Play Preferences
  • View My Rolls
  • Referrals: 3
Re: Cat problem
« Reply #5 on: April 03, 2011, 04:51:40 PM »
I checked - Softpaws are able to be applied by anyone.  You'll have to get your cat used to you handling their feet (gentle pressure on the toes to get them to extend the claw), but the process on their website looks fairly simple.

Offline Trieste

  • Faerie Queen; Her Imperial Lubemajesty; Willing Victim
  • Dame
  • Carnite
  • *
  • Join Date: Apr 2005
  • Location: In the middle of Happily Ever After with a dark Prince Charming.
  • Gender: Female
  • I am many things - dull is not one of them.
  • My Role Play Preferences
  • View My Rolls
  • Referrals: 4
Re: Cat problem
« Reply #6 on: April 03, 2011, 06:19:18 PM »
As far as the indoor/outdoor thing, going outside is never an option for my cats. They aren't even allowed outside for short jaunts. We have indoor kitties, and I feel they are genuinely happier and healthier that way.

We personally used SoftPaws for Curie when she was smaller (otherwise, we both would end up looking like we got in a kickfight with a briar patch). It broke her of the habit of doing things like leaping onto our backs from other tall objects and hooking her claws in to stay put, so that's always a plus.

SoftPaws take some getting used to and while they CAN be applied by just one person, it's much easier if you have a second pair of hands. They are, however, very preferable to declawing. I've had one of my cats declawed before, and it was a traumatic experience for both me and the cat. I felt awful for essentially cutting off the tips of her toes, and it was agony for her for a week or two after it was done. Not to mention, the poor cat would try to climb, scale, or jump on things that she could previously do with no problem (with her claws) but after being declawed, she would end up scrabbling frantically (with fresh surgical wounds, even *wince*) and then falling in a manner that usually looked painful. You get a similar situation with the SoftPaws, but at least that's reversible, and they do have SOME anchorage with their covered claws.

The SoftPaws are a pain in the ass to apply and replace, but they are a hell of a lot better than putting both you and the cat through the declawing experience, and they aren't very expensive at all. I can even point you to the website where I bought mine.

Offline KurzykTopic starter

Re: Cat problem
« Reply #7 on: April 03, 2011, 06:32:25 PM »
Thanks guys for your thoughts. I would very much appreciate more information on SoftPaws.

I just spoke to my ex, and while she was touched at the offer, she actually felt that NY would be a better home for the kitty. She's rarely at the house, which would put the burden of caring for the kitten to her family, which she didn't want to do. If she took her, she'd want to be there, which she's really not. While she lives there, she hangs out a lot with friends and is out sometimes weeks at a time. With the struggles of adapting, we both felt that kitty needs a stable person around.

So! At least... the where is settled. Im keeping her. :) Im very happy with this.

Next task is cat proofing the NY appartment and preparing. While declawing would be easier in the long run, it is a gruesome thought to put the cat through, especially if with some effort I can maintain the nails. We have a balcony and a rail which is dangerous since its 160 feet up so some kind of meshing or wire would have to go up preventing her from getting up in it.

How do you guys feel about the change in climate on kittens? Louisiana is very different than NY. Would this be a possible health problem for her?
« Last Edit: April 03, 2011, 06:34:19 PM by Kurzyk »

Offline Saffron

  • ღ Your Designer Drug ღ Myobi's Hither and Thither Girl ღ
  • Dame
  • Addict
  • *
  • Join Date: Dec 2008
  • Location: ღ I would have you, right here on this desk, until you begged for mercy twice. ღ
  • Gender: Female
  • ღ Twice. ღ
  • My Role Play Preferences
  • View My Rolls
  • Referrals: 6
Re: Cat problem
« Reply #8 on: April 03, 2011, 06:38:14 PM »
www.softpaws.com and www.softclaws.com (both the same thing, essentially) work. They run about $20 for 40 (which you only need 8 for one application on your cat (their 'thumb' claw doesn't usually cause any scratching problems). One application of them usually lasts 4-8 weeks. I put SoftPaws on my cat, and he doesn't mind at all. I've been putting them on since he was just a baby though, so he's used to it now. I find as long as you're assertive with them (this is going to happen, the easy way or the hard way, kitty) they tend to be fine with it. It's essentially just a process of putting a little glue into the claw cover and then pushing it onto the claw. Not a big deal. Much better than putting her through the declawing experience.

And I agree that most indoor cats tend to be happier and healthier. I can third (or fourth?) that indoor cats live longer. Cats are generally very happy to be alone with their human as well, so don't feel like you need to socialize it.

Offline Trieste

  • Faerie Queen; Her Imperial Lubemajesty; Willing Victim
  • Dame
  • Carnite
  • *
  • Join Date: Apr 2005
  • Location: In the middle of Happily Ever After with a dark Prince Charming.
  • Gender: Female
  • I am many things - dull is not one of them.
  • My Role Play Preferences
  • View My Rolls
  • Referrals: 4
Re: Cat problem
« Reply #9 on: April 03, 2011, 06:41:53 PM »
Nope; I moved my cats from Panama City Beach to Boston and it didn't seem to phase them. If anything, they seem more comfortable in the summers, and of course in the winters they stay in a nice heated apartment. They make chattering noises at the snowflakes. >.>

The SoftClaws site is here. I have used them repeatedly with no issues. If you don't already have one, you'll want a kitty nail clipper (the kind that look like weird scissors with a round hole in the middle of the blades). The clipper is useful for two reasons: one, you'll want to trim just the very end of the claw before you put the cap on it. I don't know why, but it seems to keep the cap on more securely and for longer. Second, if you happen to order caps that are too big for your cat, you can trim off the excess from the back of the cap with kitty nail clippers.

I'm really glad you're keeping your kitty. :)

Offline Saffron

  • ღ Your Designer Drug ღ Myobi's Hither and Thither Girl ღ
  • Dame
  • Addict
  • *
  • Join Date: Dec 2008
  • Location: ღ I would have you, right here on this desk, until you begged for mercy twice. ღ
  • Gender: Female
  • ღ Twice. ღ
  • My Role Play Preferences
  • View My Rolls
  • Referrals: 6
Re: Cat problem
« Reply #10 on: April 03, 2011, 06:54:05 PM »
One way to start getting her ready for SoftPaws (if that's what you decide to do) is to start playing with her paws for a few minutes everyday. Just touch them and tickle them and let her get used to you poking around her paws a little, if she'll let you.

Offline KurzykTopic starter

Re: Cat problem
« Reply #11 on: April 03, 2011, 06:55:33 PM »
Wonderful Ill take a look at that. The cost for SoftPaws is reasonable and Im sure at 2 she can be trained to get used to the application.

Ill do with the paws. I frequently massage her paws and play with them anyway so she's used to it. And every once in a while I trim her nails but usually when she's sleepy and doesn't care what I do.

Its reassuring what you said Saff about feeling the need to have her socialize and not to worry about it. She's very close with me and seems happy. Ive thought lately of her being around other animals would be healthy and make her happy. But she's very shy and seems fine as she is with her routines.

Offline Saffron

  • ღ Your Designer Drug ღ Myobi's Hither and Thither Girl ღ
  • Dame
  • Addict
  • *
  • Join Date: Dec 2008
  • Location: ღ I would have you, right here on this desk, until you begged for mercy twice. ღ
  • Gender: Female
  • ღ Twice. ღ
  • My Role Play Preferences
  • View My Rolls
  • Referrals: 6
Re: Cat problem
« Reply #12 on: April 03, 2011, 06:59:24 PM »
In my experience I have seen socialization go both ways. Usually shy/timid cats need other shy/timid cats in order to manage something livable. If one walks in and takes right over as an 'alpha cat' of sorts, your older cat won't be as happy. I've also had cats feel the need to compete for attention with the addition of another cat, even when they weren't the kind of cats that wanted a lot of attention to begin with. Sometimes they will make great friends with additional animals, but they are perfectly fine alone as well. :-)

Offline Ket

  • Electroslut Extraordinaire
  • Dame
  • Enchanter
  • *
  • Join Date: Jun 2008
  • Location: You'll find me under the gun of a tattoo artist...
  • Gender: Female
  • The Onion Queen - crispy fried goodness
  • My Role Play Preferences
  • View My Rolls
  • Referrals: 5
Re: Cat problem
« Reply #13 on: April 03, 2011, 10:24:59 PM »
If you'd like for her to be able to go on the balcony, but are concerned about her jumping up on the railings and what not, you could try an outdoor cat run.  This site has some information on them.

Offline KurzykTopic starter

Re: Cat problem
« Reply #14 on: April 03, 2011, 10:58:32 PM »
Ah cool. Thanks Ket I bookmarked that site. The outdoor run is an interesting idea.

Offline Malina

Re: Cat problem
« Reply #15 on: April 04, 2011, 05:55:07 PM »
Ours is an outdoor cat and he loves it, he's used to doing whatever he likes out there, but he obeys well. He doesn't ruin furniture, inside, he's got the doormat he may take apart if he wants, and his cat tree and sleeping place, some toys, and that's all he needs for the claws-out-bliss. We even trained him to stay off the sofa (and other furniture) altogether. My parents have an indoor cat, he leaves the furniture alone, completely, although while my mother's at work, that cat could take half the house apart before my father would as much as notice, probably, and still the cat doesn't do that (which shows that when one person trains a cat, even if the cat's unattended all day, it will usually obey the furniture rules and such). Our friends (a couple, both work fulltime) have three indoor cats, and they all don't scratch furniture, either, they sharpen their claws on the sisal of the cat trees etc.. None of our friends (many cat owners) have problems with their cats scratching furniture or wallpaper etc..

I haven't even heard of one person in my widest acquaintance who'd as much as consider removing a cat's claws! *shudders* I must say, it really seems wrong to me, cats need their claws, so much of what they do with them gives them comfort, from scratching their own skin to the way they extract and retract the claws in pleasure, to climbing and playing 'hunt' games, to really going at their sisal mats and such they're allowed to scratch to bits, which they do love.

A halfway decently trained cat just scratches those places they're allowed to scratch. One can train cats just as well as dogs, the methods are a little different, but the result is just as good. As a rule, cats develop a habit of scratching again where they've scratched before (territory marking), so, if you move to a new place and prevent them from even starting to scratch some places, while you offer sufficient others (sisal mats and such), encourage their scratching there, they'll be perfectly happy with the arrangement.

Offline KurzykTopic starter

Re: Cat problem
« Reply #16 on: April 04, 2011, 07:53:36 PM »
I'd gone back and forth about the claw problem and decided that ill give it a shot as she is, with her claws, and with tools such as SoftPaws and trimming etc. I explained this to my dad who is open to it, and we'll just see. Worse case scenario, she's tearing up the place and its a serious enough issue to consider either declawing or a shelter, then obviously Ill have the front paws declawed over giving her to some NY shelter where she probably wouldn't survive. But I made it very clear its a last resort and not something I want to do.

I think it will be ok. She's a very good cat and once she gets the lay of the land and gets into her routines she'll just play, explore, and sleep as usual.

Offline Saffron

  • ღ Your Designer Drug ღ Myobi's Hither and Thither Girl ღ
  • Dame
  • Addict
  • *
  • Join Date: Dec 2008
  • Location: ღ I would have you, right here on this desk, until you begged for mercy twice. ღ
  • Gender: Female
  • ღ Twice. ღ
  • My Role Play Preferences
  • View My Rolls
  • Referrals: 6
Re: Cat problem
« Reply #17 on: April 04, 2011, 09:53:38 PM »
With consistent applications of softpaws, it's literally impossible for her to tear things up.

Offline Kuroneko

Re: Cat problem
« Reply #18 on: April 04, 2011, 09:53:55 PM »
I'm glad you're keeping your kitty  :-). Just be patient with training her not to scratch the furniture and make sure she has a nice scratching post she can scratch, preferably covered with something not like your furniture or carpet, such as rope.  That way the 'okay to scratch' surface with be totally different than the 'not okay' surfaces.

Offline KurzykTopic starter

Re: Cat problem
« Reply #19 on: April 09, 2011, 11:35:08 AM »
Problem is, this isn't just an ordinary move. Im moving into a highly chaotic and tragic environment where stress is already high. My mom is dying, and my dad who was her partner for 45 years is a wreck and trying to handle it. One scratch from her on anything and he could have a nervous breakdown. My move is an attempt to bring balance and stability to unstable situation.

To be honest, I wonder if it would be better for everyone, including the cat, if I found her a nice home here. She would be under a lot more restrictions in our appt in NY, and probably would have to be declawed. Whereas here, she could be in a house and maybe run around outside with people who love animals and maybe have a few animal friends to play with.

If I find someone that Im assured would genuinely be a good home for her, i'd strongly consider it for the common good. I think she'd be happier in a house in the country than a city appartment and it would be less stressful.