Monday, January 31, 2011

Dealing with aggressive behaviour

Since I allowed Ezzabella in my room I have been observing a great deal of hyper aggression from her, but fortunately it's all friendly aggressiveness.The first time I got her inside by way of the back door once, I lured her in and then shut the door and eventually got her into my bedroom. After spending a rather restless night with her closed in my bedroom, I decided to give her options to see if it would calm her down. The next day I shut Zelda in the back bedroom, left my front door opened, opened my bedroom door, and called her out. She cautiously came out, walked out the front door and meandered towards the garage. About 30 minutes later I noticed she was sitting on my back deck, so I opened the back door, and called her to see if she would come back in. She just sat there looking at me, as if to say "I'll not walk through that door again" Then I got the bright idea of setting up a little walk way to the long window in my bedroom. I found a piece of ply wood and laid it slant ways in the snow up to the window. then I took the screen out, cranked open the window, stuck my head out and called for her. She ran right to the window, walked up the plywood, and jumped back into my bedroom. So I could see she had no fear of coming back in my bedroom. I hoped that given this option of knowing she was not trapped in the house might calm her down a bit.

All online research tells me that spaying your female cat will calm her down. I have called to see when the next low priced clinic will be in my area, and so far the next close available clinic will not be available until early March. So I made an appointment. Now my next process will be to get her used to going into a carrier to eat her food. If I keep the door fastened opened, I hope she will go into this large dog carrier to eat, When the time comes I plan to quickly shut her in there the night before surgery. So the only food I'll give her from now on will be in the carrier, lets hope it works?

The night before last, when I went into bed, I opened the window, and off she went. The next morning I mixed up a capsule of Valerian root in some canned cat food, put it in the carrier and called for her. Around 10:30 am. She quickly reappeared and jumped through the window, back into the bedroom. I closed the door and left her alone until later in the day. When I returned to spend some quality time with her, she seemed less aggressive and much calmer. When I went back in the evening she seemed to be in her hyper aggressive mode again. When she's like this she is constantly by my feet, to the point of tripping me. I fear I could step on her, and if she takes it as an act of aggression from me, she's going to get defensive and bite. If she had a clean bill of health and I knew she was free of diseases, i would not fear the bite so much. I can only take about 2 careful steps, then I have to stop. As soon as I made it to the window and opened it, she quickly jumped out. I feel sort of guilty allowing her out at night, but under the circumstances I don't know how else to cope with her unpredictable behavior. I just hope she will calm down after she has been spayed.

This morning i went through the same ritual. Mix up some Valerian root with her cat food, put her food in the carrier, call for her around 10:30 and shut her in for the day.

All About Zelda

I have always viewed cats to be mysterious and intelligent. And because of their multiple colors, fur textures, eye coloring, and various body shapes I find cats to be the most beautiful creatures of all the wild and domesticated animals. I have often thought it would be nice to go to a shelter and pick out the most interesting attractive kitty. Or perhaps adopt 2 cute little kittens together. But I generally end up with the disadvantaged, frightened cat that crosses my path. That is how I came across my tricolered female cat about 9 years ago. At the time I was not living in a rural area. As I was driving up on a busy side street a very small cat with a big head and pointed ears meandered slowly in front of my car. It was the weirdest looking little cat I had ever seen. I got out of my car to look at it, and she seemed to have no fear of cars, noise or people. I later learned that she was actually listless, due to poor health. I started to bring her towards the house to alert the owners that she was going to get run over. As I approached the porch I saw about 8 cats prowling about. That's when I decided these people could care less about these cats, so I held her in my lap and drove home with her. When I got her home I realized I could feel every bone in her fragile body, and she appeared to be very malnourished. I brought her to the vets, he gave her all the necessary inoculations, wormed her and informed me she had pneumonia. He gave me some medicine and said "if she makes it then you can an make an appointment to have her spayed" I said "she can't be more then 3 months old, so I'll get back to you after 3 more months" Much to my surprise he informed me she was actually 6 months old, and she only looked like a kitten because she was malnourished. After she recuperated from pneumonia, and I got a little meat on her bones, I brought her back to be spayed. I named her Zelda, and until she gained some weight and got bigger everyone everyone thought she looked like a little alien cat. Below is representation of Zelda, at about 8 months.
As Zelda grew up, being a singular cat, she was unaccepting to most people that walked through my door. And she is very territorial and antisocial with other cats.

Reprsentation of Zelda today

So far it has been an ordeal keeping these 2 cats apart. Taking Ezzabella in my home would of been a lot easier if Zelda was not so territorial and Ezzabella was not so anxious and frightened inhabiting Zelda's domain. And I'm sure that Zelda feels threatened by her existence.

Sunday, January 30, 2011

If Animals Could Talk

This is a belated update, a week or so ago when we had a freezing, frigid, cold spell. One night it was 25 below, and the next night it was 35 below. I have been trying to keep an eye on where my little wayward cat spent most of her time. Along with some dry cat food, I set up a basket of hay for her to sleep in, in the garage. I have seen her go in and out of the garage often, but unfortunately it does not appear that she sleeps there. By following her tracks I can see that she goes down the bank to my old homestead, which is currently in the process of demolition this summer. Now I made a small opening, so she could go into the garage that's attached to that old house, but she chooses not to. Instead her tracks go under the house. When it get's below zero, I can only imagine how cold it must be under there.

Yesterday morning I called her, and she came up the bank to my back deck holding one paw up. Then I noticed that she kept picking up both paws. She seemed to be more hungry for attention then she was for food. I had hoped this cat would come in out of the cold on her own. But after seeing how unbearable the cold was on her paws, I came to the conclusion that I should take matters into my own hands. With the door open, I sat in a kitchen chair, so it would bring me down closer to her level. Then I pulled the food dish back far enough so she was actually standing in my hallway. Once I knew I wouldn't catch her tail in the door, I quickly shut it. After the door was shut, she was spooked, not pleased, and no longer eating. My other cat Zelda was safely locked in the back bedroom.

If I had an extra room, I would put her in it, but unfortunately I don't. So my plan was to keep the stray in my bedroom, to keep the cats apart. By the way she acted I don't think she was ever in a house before. I had previously set up a litter box, food and water, and  it took about an hour to get her into my bedroom. When I finally accomplished that I shut the door and left her alone for awhile, and when I returned I found her under the bed. I thought to myself  well this is what she does, she's reclusive, she looks for food, and finds small places to crawl into, so she'll feel safe. So I'll leave her alone. When I got up in the morning I noticed that she had eaten some of the food. I looked under the bed and called her by the name (Ezzabella) That was the name she answered to through the last nine month. Much to my surprise she came right out, and she was friendly to the point of being aggressively over excited which made me a little nervous.
If only animals could talk she could tell me her story.

Thursday, January 27, 2011


I recently started this crafting and cat blog. I have been working on setting it up, in hopes to give it a welcoming inviting design. Unfortunately I'm computer illiterate, so before I am finished there will probably be a lot of tweaking.

I have deep concern for abandoned abused animals. I have been feeding a black female cat since April 2011. In the month of January because of the frigid cold weather, this cat has been my number one priority. So for now the crafts will be put on the back burner, as I continue with the chronicles of a wayward cat I named Ezzabella.

Survival of domesticated animals, as well as wild animals can be very difficult up in Northern New Hampshire, during the winter months.

I live in a rural area, with no neighbors close by. I consider it my isolated little corner of forest, field, and fauna. I was first informed about this cat by a neighbor in early April 2010. She called to ask me if I owned a black cat. I informed her that my cat was multicolored, and she had been spayed years ago. Then she told me about this little black cat on the side of the road across from my mail box with a litter of dead kittens. My mail box is on a dirt road and not within view of any homes. She claimed she got out of her car and tried to approach it, but she ran off up the bank through the small patch of woods and shrubbery towards my home.(it was a perfect place for a heartless jerk to drop a cat off) I walked down the bank to look for it, but I was unable to find it, however I did see a bag of dried cat food dumped way back in the bushes. I called her back, told her no trace of the cat, just some dried cat food. She said "my sister and I felt bad for the poor thing so we left her some food"

Last year we had a snow storm, and a cold spell, I often thought about the poor kitty and wondered if it would survive. Alas one warm beautiful day in May I saw her running across my front yard. In-spite of being so bony she looked like an adorable little kitty, no more the 2 or 3 months old. First thing I thought was how could she have kittens at such a young age. When I called her (big mistake) yelling "here kitty kitty", she spooked and ran. Obviously this poor little critter had no trust of humans. Every evening I started putting food on my back deck for her, and I noticed it was always gone by morning. Considering she was so small, and perhaps had a very late start health wise, I felt she needed to put some meat on her bones so she could survive on her own. So I fed her plenty of cooked chicken and hamburg. As time went by eventually I was able to observe her sneaking up to the back deck. She was always very skittish so it took all the summer months for me to befriend her. Eventually she learned to trust me, and by fall she had grown to a healthy robust cat with a shiny thick coat of fur.

In my ongoing concern for this cat, was the nagging question 'was she a cat that was mistreated by humans, and abandoned on the side of the road. Or was she a feral cat, that ended up giving birth to a litter of kittens on the side of the road?' I have researched all the information online about catching feral cats to have them spayed/neutered. And their approach on feral cats is, If you don't have them spayed or neutered, don't feed them. Unfortunately there is no catch and release feral cat programs in my area. Possibly not in the whole state of New Hampshire? After calling around to local shelters and programs, I get the feeling that none of them want anything to do with feral cats. So if I were to trap her where would I take her?  And I don't go along with  "if you don't have them altered, don't feed them".  My only other option was to make an attempt to befriend her.