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Need some helpful advice

October 28th, 2009, 12:53 AM
Hi we just got a one year old ragdoll female, the previous owner told me that she is very timid and will take time to adjust to our home. She has been under our spare bed for two days- I know this is normal, she stays under there and growls and hisses when we enter the room, she comes out at night to eat, i watched he walking round last night she even came in the our room. I decided to just leave her until she decides to interact with us but am worried that she may be getting aggresive. When we enter the room to do something like close the window she will run towards the edge of the bed growling and hissing- I do not know if she is being overly aggressive or if it can be expected, she started off just hiding and growling. She scratched me once when i went to pat her so i am not doing that now but i am worried she will start running at us. is this a sign that she will not settle in or is this as normal as the hiding itself? I really want her to settle in and be part of the family. And she is making progress once she has come out during the day and eaten a few biscuits while i was near by. Please help!

October 28th, 2009, 07:05 AM
All kitties are different have different ways of expressing their feelings. I think she will settle in with some patience from you and your family.

It sounds like your kitty is afraid of humans. Ragdolls are normally very social kitties that are more dog-like than cat.

Do you know what her home life was like before? Was there children that used to torment her? Have humans abused her?

Is she spayed? If not, you may want to consider doing that as soon as you can as it may be hormones taking a role into her personality.

I think you are doing the right thing by ignoring her. Allow her to make the first move to you (hopefully it won't be aggressive). If you have the time, sit on the floor by the bed she is hiding under and just ramble on. Have some treats on the floor around you to entice her out. If she comes out don't move, don't try to pat her, just allow her to get the treats and run back under the bed. Over time she will realize that you do not intend to harm her. Depending on her background, it could take a long time to gain her trust.

As she does come to you more often, you may want to try to offer her treats from your hand, or to play with her with a string.

If you have small children, you may want to keep them away from her until she has settled in. I would hate to see one of your children scratched or biten.

Probably the worst thing you can do is yell or punish her.

Good luck and if you have any pics, I would love to see them :lovestruck:

October 28th, 2009, 07:54 AM
I got my baby Gus when he was one year old. He'd been badly abused before I got him and when I got him home, I'd only see him at night. He'd hide and growl and hiss whenever I peeked under the bed for him. I would sit next to him and talk to him and slip treats under the bed.

In about three months, he would come out from under the bed even while I was around although he wouldn't let me get near him.

A few months later, he wouldn't run away from his spot on the floor if I stood up or moved (although he still ran if he thought I was coming toward him).

It took almost a whole year but he's become the sweetest, most affectionate lap cat you could want. He's still afraid of other people, but he's even allowed my foster son (who's been in the house a year) to pet him now and he lets me walk right up to him and pick him up (although he doesn't much like being held - I think he still feels a little vulnerable in that position).

It just takes time and patience. Love4himies is right - you should probably let him make the first move. Anything you do will probably be perceived as threatening. If you choose to talk to him while he's under the bed, don't reach toward him, or even really look for him - just sit next to it and slip treats in.

October 28th, 2009, 11:20 AM
I'm sorry to hear you're having problems with your new girl. Try just sitting on the floor near the bed and try to engage her in some play, with one of those toys with feathers, fringe or ribbons on a stick, or make one yourself. Drag it around in front of you, but don't poke it at her. When you do look at her, do not stare and give eye contact--cats interpret this as a threatening gesture particularly if they don't know you, but do slow blinking then look away; this is calming for cats and says: "relax, I'm not a threat and mean no harm". Catnip is calming as well, tho not all cats respond to it. Rub a little catnip on a toy mouse and see if she'll come near you to play with it. Cats have a keen sense of smell so will smell the catnip as soon as you enter the room. Ignore her hissing, and keep talking to her in a quiet singsong voice and remain calm, and offer treats a few times throughout the day, and hopefully she'll be looking forward to your visits, either to give her treats or some new interesting play toy, like a foil ball, or plastic pull off a frozen juice can. :cat:

October 28th, 2009, 12:03 PM
I had a foster cat (some here remember my story), that hid under the bed for weeks, hissed at me and was generally not happy about his new home whatsoever.

Jim Hall suggested that I not push myself on this boy, and just go into the room and read a book out loud.

It took about 3 weeks I think, but he is now a member of my family, out and about with the dogs and cats....and he is probably now my best friend.

October 28th, 2009, 12:06 PM
Can't add any more. Just lots of patience, love and care. She will come around once she starts feeling more at home.

October 28th, 2009, 06:44 PM
H guys,
thank you for all your advice and reassurance. She came out last night to eat twice while we were both sitting nearby so thats a good sign. I will try reading next to her, hopefully she wont run at me. I am glad that all the responses were positive, I had one response on another forum tell me to give her straight back, that they had not heard of an adult cat acting out like this, but everyone else has been really positive so I am going to be patient, I do like how I need to earn her trust, I think that if and when she does come around she will have a very strong bond with me.
These are some photos off of her ad that her previous owner took, she is the prettiest little girl!

Thanks again guys I will try to keep u posted!