Millennium Post

Catering to crazy cats!

Never hit, shout, chase, or lose your temper with a cat. You will simply terrify it making it nervous and confused

Catering to crazy cats!
A cat in my building keeps scratching me even when he is very familiar with me. Why would he do that?

React calmly. Never hit, shout, chase, or lose your temper with a cat. You will simply terrify the cat and cause it to become nervous and confused .Never call a cat to you and then punish it. The cat hasn't got a clue why you're responding negatively to him. In fact, the cat probably expects a pleasant response if you call it. Remove yourself from the situation & stop touching the cat and then hold your hands well out of striking range. Walk away and do not return until he has calmed down. Give the cat a way out. If you are trying to get from one room to another and a hissing, snarling cat blocks the way, look at the situation from his viewpoint. The cat believes he is trapped and you are walking towards him, which he perceives as a threat. He wants to run but there is no escape route so he must defend himself by attacking. The simple solution is to step aside, let the cat pass (which he will do at speed) and then go about your way. Maybe the cat doesn't want to be petted and he is simply informing you of that. Like humans, some animals don't want to be touched and this should be respected. If the cat comes to you himself and rubs against you, then you may pet it lightly and stop if it shows displeasure. Cats are not dogs – they are much more independent.
My cat has a spot at the base of her tail that is losing hair. She is constantly licking it. What can cause this and what can I do to relieve it?
First, stop your cat from licking the spot. The best way to do it is to use a head collar that you can get from a pet shop. She may have local infection or skin allergy that is aggravated by constant licking. The first step is to note if the hair loss is self-induced (skin itch causes cats to groom excessively, pulling out the hair), or due to a metabolic disease. The most common cause is skin itch resulting from a reaction to fleas or some type of allergy. If an allergic reaction to fleas or some other substance is ruled out, then the veterinarian will move on to other causes that might interfere with hair growth such as metabolic or endocrine based diseases.
Causes of hair loss in cats can be: parasites, such as mites (mange, ear mites); fungal infections like ringworm; abscesses (usually caused by bite wounds from other animals); a sort of obsessive / compulsive disease. Some cats lick and bite and overgroom to the point of hair loss due to psychological reasons.; Endocrine diseases such as hyperthyroidism, Cushings disease (rare), and diabetes; A reaction to a medication or other substance taken orally; Contact dermititis - a reaction to direct contact with something irritating or allergenic; Dry skin.
Ringworm - Lime sulphur dips, anti-fungal drugs.
Food allergies - Switching to a novel or low allergenic diet.
Hyperthyroidism - Radioactive iodine to destroy the tumour, or surgery to remove it, followed by lifelong replacement of thyroid hormones.
Inhalant allergy - Avoidance of the allergen if possible.
Notoedric mange - Clipping, weekly lime sulphur dips.
Psychogenic - Behaviour modification, keeping your cat in a stress free environment and drug therapy (if other methods fail).
Abscess - Draining of the abscess and antibiotics.
Drug reaction - Switching or discontinuing medications.
Seborrhoea - Shampoos, omega-3 fatty acids, antibiotics.
Stud tail - Antiseborrheic shampoos, neutering (where possible).
(Views expressed and information provided are personal; Send your questions to

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