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Brooklyn Animal Action

Rescuing and Rehoming Animals in Need in New York City

Behavioral Problems

Stress and Behavioral Changes in Catsviolet

Your cat may exhibit behavioral problems for a variety of reasons, both medical and environmental. For example, if your cat is urinating outside the litterbox, this could be due to a urinary tract infection or simply to stress. Therefore, if your cat is displaying changes in sleeping, eating, behavior, or mood, health issues should be ruled out first by a veterinarian.

Common environmental causes of stress and behavior change in cats include moving to a new home, the addition or loss of a human or animal family member, loud parties, and a change in routine such as a new job that results in less quality time with your cat.

If you can’t pinpoint an environmental cause, remember that cats have distinct personalities just like us. It is normal for some cats to be more sensitive and need more love and attention than others, especially rescue cats who have likely endured hardship and abuse.

The following are some recommendations for reducing stress in your cat.


General Tips

1. The best tool is always prevention – be sure to introduce any changes in your cat’s life slowly, monitor their reaction, and provide plenty of loving care to help them feel safe.

2. Feliway plug-in releases a calming pheromone that only cats can smell. Plug these in low along the wall where cats can easily smell them. The cheapest retailer we know of is EntirelyPets.com.


Litterbox Issues

1. Make sure your litterbox is big enough for your cat, in a place the cat can comfortably reach, and is cleaned daily. If your litterbox has a lid, try removing it.

2. Cat Attract is a cat litter that attracts cats to use the litterbox.

3. It is very important to completely remove the urine smell from the marked area so that the cat will not urinate there again. There are a variety of products designed to remove pet odors. Nature’s Miracle has an extensive product line for this – BAA staffers love it! Check out their site here. In addition, Urine Off is an enzyme cleaner that removes urine from surfaces, and Zero Odor is another similar product. You can also purchase a blacklight to see hidden areas where your cat has marked.

Note: Do NOT use perfumed deodorizers such as Febreze – these often encourage marking where sprayed!

4. To get rid of the smell of cat urine in fabric, wash the fabric twice, not once, or your cat will continue to “mark” the fabric. For example, if your cat urinated on your bed, be sure to wash the sheets twice, and spray Urine Off on the mattress.


Eating Issues

1. It is common for cats from the street to have food anxiety and aggression; they are used to starving and don’t realize yet that food is going to keep coming. In addition to wet food, try leaving out a reasonable amount of dry food to instill food security in your cat. If your cat needs to lose weight, consult with your veterinarian to determine an appropriate amount of food.

2. If you have multiple cats and one is eating another’s food, the easiest solution is to simply separate them while feeding.


Declawing: What You Should Knowkatie

Some people think declawing a cat is like cutting our fingernails. This is far from the truth. Declawing traditionally involves the amputation of the last bone of each toe on a cat – the equivalent of cutting off each of our fingers at the last knuckle.

The reasons for people declawing a cat vary from discouraging unwanted scratching to preventing infections in those with immune deficiencies. However, scratching can easily be prevented by providing a cat with scratching posts, and the risk of infection from cat scratches is less than that from bites, cat litter, or fleas.

In addition, declawing can itself cause a host of behavioral problems in cats, including being less likely to use the litter box and more likely to bite. For all of these reasons, BAA strongly discourages declawing. Read the ASPCA’s statement on declawing here.


Additional Resources

Here are a couple of sites with more info on anxiety in cats, including possible causes and solutions:

About.com guide to stress in cats

ASPCA tips for litterbox issues and urine marking

Animal Humane Society guide to introducing a new/second cat to your home

HSUS article on declawing

 

 

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    brooklynanimalaction: "AWESOMENESS! Meet me, Abby:::Abby is a young Bombay beauty who has come a very long way since being rescued a few months ago in Midwood.
🖇
This awesome girl is always positive, playful and active. She is an independent cat, but appreciates both humans and other felines. Being about 10 months old, she would make a good companion to you, your kitten or an adult cat.
🖇
Abby would benefit from a little more socialization but is very friendly and ready for a new loving home!
🖇"
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  • MONDAY! Little black panther feature::: Marco Polo! About• I am 🖇 already neutered, housetrained, and good with cats. 🖇 Marco Polo, adventurous bombay kitten!'s Story... 🖇 Marco (short for Marco Polo) is the last of a litter of kittens rescued with their mom in Crown Heights. He’s a gorgeous 9-month-old Bombay boy who loves to play and cuddle, and as his name implies, he’s quite an adventurer. He’s got a lot of kitten energy, but is happy to snuggle when hugs and pats are involved! He gets along wonderfully with his foster big sister, too, and is generous with other foster kittens. 🖇 Marco loves other kitties and would like to be in a home with a friend. He’s neutered, tested negative for FIV/FeLV, had his shots, and is flea & worm free. If you would like more information about this adorable sweetheart or want to set up a play date, please contact Belinda at belinda@cooperdooper.org 🖇 Thank you for thinking of animals in need - your support allows us to help the next furry sw...

    brooklynanimalaction: "MONDAY! Little black panther feature::: Marco Polo! About• 
I am
🖇
already neutered, housetrained, and good with cats.
🖇
Marco Polo, adventurous bombay kitten!'s Story...
🖇
Marco (short for Marco Polo) is the last of a litter of kittens rescued with their mom in Crown Heights.  He’s a gorgeous 9-month-old Bombay boy who loves to play and cuddle, and as his name implies, he’s quite an adventurer.  He’s got a lot of kitten energy, but is happy to snuggle when hugs and pats are involved! He gets along wonderfully with his foster big sister, too, and is generous with other foster kittens. 🖇
Marco loves other kitties and would like to be in a home with a friend. He’s neutered, tested negative for FIV/FeLV, had his shots, and is  flea & worm free. If you would like more information about this adorable sweetheart or want to set up a play date, please contact  Belinda at  belinda@cooperdooper.org 🖇
Thank you for thinking of animals in need - your support allows us to help the next furry sweetheart! 🖇
All Brooklyn Animal Action dogs and cats are available to foster or adopt.
🖇
BrooklynAnimalAction.org"
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  • My brother, Liberace watching the snow after finishing a good book; intellectual😽Learn more about our story via BrooklynAnimalAction.org > Our names are Thurgood + Liberace! Take care:) @brooklynanimalaction

    brooklynanimalaction: "My brother, Liberace watching the snow after finishing a good book; intellectual😽Learn more about our story via BrooklynAnimalAction.org > Our names are Thurgood + Liberace! Take care:) @brooklynanimalaction"
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    brooklynanimalaction: "CAT FRIDAY: Hi! I am Thurgood + my brother (not pictured) can help you with your taxes, cuddle depletion, + a trip to the Dr. We are 6 months old and expert cuddle monkeys to boot! Learn more about us + even watch a video shot by our foster mum @brooklynanimalaction > BrooklynAnimalAction.org Thank you! Hope to snuggle soon✌🏽"
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  • PANTHER SPOTLIGHTᗷig ᗷoy ᗷeᗩᖇ • I am already neutered, housetrained, up to date with shots, good with kids, good with dogs, and good with cats. 🐻 Bear: Big Shy Boy's Story... Bear is a big boy, built like a linebacker on a football team, wide and round though he is actually not a big eater. He may look rough, but underneath it all he is a sweet boy who is very shy. Since I got a friendly kitty who liked to bully him into a foster home, he has been coming forward more and hiding less though he is still cautious. I pet him while he eats, and he loves to have his back end scratched. He used to hide under furniture all the time but now he is even sitting in the window looking out at the world. I'm so excited for him to keep becoming a more and more outgoing kitty with some love, patience and attention. 🐻 I caught Bear last winter with 6 other cats on a block in Bed Stuy where there has been a lot of development and soon the stray cats would have nowhere to go. Though he was shy I didn't wan...

    brooklynanimalaction: "PANTHER SPOTLIGHT>ᗷig ᗷoy ᗷeᗩᖇ •
I am already neutered, housetrained, up to date with shots, good with kids, good with dogs, and good with cats.
🐻
Bear: Big Shy Boy's Story...
Bear is a big boy, built like a linebacker on a football team, wide and round though he is actually not a big eater. He may look rough, but underneath it all he is a sweet boy who is very shy. Since I got a friendly kitty who liked to bully him into a foster home, he has been coming forward more and hiding less though he is still cautious.  I pet him while he eats, and he loves to have his back end scratched. He used to hide under furniture all the time but now he is even sitting in the window looking out at the world. I'm so excited for him to keep becoming a more and more outgoing kitty with some love, patience and attention.
🐻
I caught Bear last winter with 6 other cats on a block in Bed Stuy where there has been a  lot of development and soon the stray cats would have nowhere to go. Though he was shy I didn't want to return him but wanted to give him the chance of living indoors. He has been neutered, tested negative for fiv/felv and is ready for nice home with sweet, patient people."
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  • It was cold outside so my brother and I are coming next week. Love, Thurgood (me) & Liberace (pictured at BrooklynAnimalAction.org) ❤️

    brooklynanimalaction: "It was cold outside so my brother and I are coming next week. Love, Thurgood (me) & Liberace (pictured at BrooklynAnimalAction.org) ❤️"
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