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Old July 21st, 2014, 06:36 PM
Bella and Gus Bella and Gus is offline
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Join Date: Jul 2014
Location: Ontario, Canada
Posts: 3
Timid cat

Hello, I'm new to this forum and hoping you can give me advice.
I got my first cat in 2007, purebred Ragdoll named Gus..awesome cat. I decided to get a 2nd one 2 years later to keep Gus company since my work schedule is pretty erratic. I decided this one would be rescued. So I picked Bella, a silver tabby. Bella was rescued at about 6 months and was pretty wild. Took a long time, but i have earned her trust and she is also an awesome cat who is best friends with Gus. The problem is she is so timid she will hide when company comes or if there is too much activity. She used to come out a bit after awhile, but now has returned to hiding and will only come out when people are sleeping. Her hiding place is in my bedroom and I feed and supply fresh water there when company comes. I also have started putting a litter box there.

I'm wondering if anyone has ideas to coax her out and possibly get her more accustomed to people. Any suggestions would be appreciated.

Thanks, Pat
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Old July 21st, 2014, 07:07 PM
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sugarcatmom sugarcatmom is offline
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Join Date: May 2007
Location: Calgary, AB
Posts: 5,357
Does she have an absolutely favourite treat that she'll climb mountains for? Temptations seem to be a big hit with many kitties, although my guys really go nuts for freeze-dried salmon or chicken.

I have 2 feral female cats and 3 of their offspring who are all quite shy, but I'm slowly eroding their tendency to hide in the basement by giving them treats whenever someone comes over. Now when there's a knock at the door, they dash away at first but come back a few minutes later to get their num-nums. Sometimes a couple of them will go back to hiding afterwards, but more and more often they stick around for longer and longer.

Having the guests hand out treats after a while is also a good idea. Make sure the guests know not to try to pet her or to tower over her, which could cause her to feel uncomfortable. If they remain seated and give her the slow-blink kitty kiss, that should help her feel at ease.

Good luck! I have a soft spot for the shy cats and it's so amazing when they come around to trusting us.
"To close your eyes will not ease another's pain." ~ Chinese Proverb

“We must not refuse to see with our eyes what they must endure with their bodies.” ~ Gretchen Wyler
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Old July 21st, 2014, 08:33 PM
Bella and Gus Bella and Gus is offline
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Join Date: Jul 2014
Location: Ontario, Canada
Posts: 3
Bella loves temptations, but at the slightest hint of someone coming, she's gone into hiding and won't come out for anything. She seems to be comfortable enough in her hideout and will accept treats and food from me, but she will not come out. I had people here for the weekend and they left this morning. She came out a couple of times, but always returned to her safe place. I see she's out and about now and seems fine, but it's taken almost 8 hours
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Old July 22nd, 2014, 08:34 AM
Longblades Longblades is offline
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Join Date: Apr 2007
Posts: 2,496
My own two cats were both feral and are both very shy of strangers. It doesn't bother me if they don't want to socialize with guests, they are happy being with just me. If they want to hide they can. However I can certainly testify to the reaction they give to the big, slow blink. It works. You can enhance it by yawning and looking away as you do so.

One, now that she is 17 and very, very deaf is coming out more. And she always did if the person absolutely loved our last dog, whom she loved. That was only three people.

The most recent one loves the current dog and will sometimes put in an appearance if there is one fairly quiet visitor who really likes this dog.

Why both these once feral cats should have such strong attachments to the dog of the time is a mystery to me. Surely they had been chased by dogs when feral? Maybe you should get a dog? LOL, no, kidding, in my case the dog was here first, might not work if the dog comes after.
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