Ideas for getting my cat to settle

For all your feline miscellany - any interesting stories, news or subjects that do not fit in the other sections.
Post Reply
JenWof
New Cat Chatter
Posts: 2
Joined: Tue Aug 14, 2018 9:38 pm

Ideas for getting my cat to settle

Post by JenWof » Tue Aug 14, 2018 10:00 pm

Hi guys, I'm new to this forum so I apologise If I've posted this in the wrong place and I apologise for the crazy long post!

I have a three year old rescue cat (Toby) who I've had for 18 months now. He's an amazingly loving cat but the last month or so he's been driving us crazy.

I moved in with my boyfriend around four month ago and since then he's been a massive pain. He's constantly scratching everything he shouldnt and he's obsessed with looking out the bedroom window at night (and he has to get onto the windowsill by jumping on my face first, waking me up around 6/7 times a night.)

We used to let him outside in my old flat but he was never really interested. If the door was open he would go for a wander but if not he wouldn't be bothered at all. In the new house we have a large back garden which he likes to go into for an hour or so but if the door is closed (If it's cold) he won't settle and will tap on the door until I give in and let him out. As soon as he's out he wants straight back in then the whole routine starts again.

We're generally pretty laid back but it's all starting to become a bit of a chore. I have bought feliway plug ins which calm him a bit but not completely. We've managed to semi resolve the jumping on the window all night by getting a comfy bed and a heat pad for him but the scratching seems to be getting worse as does the constantly wanting in and out.

We've invested in a tonne of scratchers, we realised that he isn't too fussed about vertical ones so we got him a petfusion which he completely loves but for some reason he just prefers to claw things he shouldn't.

Any advice on how to get him to settle down would be great.

User avatar
fjm
VIP Cat Chatter!
Posts: 755
Joined: Sat Dec 23, 2017 6:11 pm
No. of cats in household: 2
Location: North West England

Re: Ideas for getting my cat to settle

Post by fjm » Wed Aug 15, 2018 7:30 am

Welcome to the forum.

The scratching and clawing could well be scent marking - cats have scent glands on the pads of their paws. Changing home means a lot of carpets and furniture that need to be anointed before he can relax. Perhaps spreading blankets or throws he has slept on around the place would help him ease up on the task. There are sprays you can use to discourage marking, but if he is still rather stressed by the changes they may not be the best idea - I think you are on the right track offering plenty of alternatives close to the places he likes to scratch, and encouraging him to use those instead. Covering furniture with throws, and carpets with a cheap nubbly rug would protect them while he gets the message.

It also sounds to me as if Toby is bored, on top of the disruption of a house move. Is he getting less company now you have moved, or less stimulation in terms of going out, or watching the world through the window? I would try a treat dispenser toy and a fishing pole game, and perhaps some of the puzzle toys to occupy him when you are out. I would also spend some time outside with him - it may well be that the garden is already part of another cat's territory, and he is uneasy about being there alone. The ultimate answer to the in/out/in/out would be a cat flap, if that is safe and allowed (might be difficult in a rented property), but many of my cats have been perfectly happy using a small window while they were young and agile.

JenWof
New Cat Chatter
Posts: 2
Joined: Tue Aug 14, 2018 9:38 pm

Re: Ideas for getting my cat to settle

Post by JenWof » Wed Aug 15, 2018 8:18 pm

fjm wrote:Welcome to the forum.

The scratching and clawing could well be scent marking - cats have scent glands on the pads of their paws. Changing home means a lot of carpets and furniture that need to be anointed before he can relax. Perhaps spreading blankets or throws he has slept on around the place would help him ease up on the task. There are sprays you can use to discourage marking, but if he is still rather stressed by the changes they may not be the best idea - I think you are on the right track offering plenty of alternatives close to the places he likes to scratch, and encouraging him to use those instead. Covering furniture with throws, and carpets with a cheap nubbly rug would protect them while he gets the message.

It also sounds to me as if Toby is bored, on top of the disruption of a house move. Is he getting less company now you have moved, or less stimulation in terms of going out, or watching the world through the window? I would try a treat dispenser toy and a fishing pole game, and perhaps some of the puzzle toys to occupy him when you are out. I would also spend some time outside with him - it may well be that the garden is already part of another cat's territory, and he is uneasy about being there alone. The ultimate answer to the in/out/in/out would be a cat flap, if that is safe and allowed (might be difficult in a rented property), but many of my cats have been perfectly happy using a small window while they were young and agile.
Hi, thank you so much for the advice.

Unfortunately we can't fit a cat flap as the door he uses are French windows and we don't allow him out the other side of the house as there are too many cars coming and going (while the garden is closed off and entirely safe for him) but spending some time with him in the garden is a great idea.

I actually think he gets more attention now we've moved because my boyfriend and I were really worried he would he really stressed out. He loves laser pointers and fishing poles so we try to play with him for a while every night but possibly while were out all day, he's getting bored. Treat dispensers sound like something he would love (he's very food orientated) so I'll look into those and possibly something we could leave out through the day time to entertain him :)

Thanks again for the advice, it's really good to know!

Post Reply