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Old 12-14-2009, 02:09 PM
123 posts, read 221,129 times
Reputation: 71


I adopted a cat from the shelter, it has been slightly over a week now.

I am not sure if she is just not liking me or what but I feel kind of bad. She just seemed alot happier at the shelter, she had the run of the place, more or less the queen of the castle.

She spends all her time on my bed, mostly licking and scratching herself. I feel sorry for her because they had told me she had been returned to the shelter twice before this. I had called about this behaviour but they swear she was all checked out when I picked her up.

I guess the reason I am worried is because I have had cats since I was a kid. Can't remember not ever having one. None of them ever acted this way, not for very long anyhow.

She doesn't even come out or off the bed if I call her, or if I come in the door. She gets up to use the facilities and eat that is about it.

I can lay on the bed and start petting her and playing with her, but before long she decides to go lay down again.

I bought a catnip mouse, and she played with it for about 10min and now it is just sitting here.

She just doesn't seem interested in anything!

Anyone have any clue as what I should do? I am starting to feel a little sensitive about this, as in whether or not she is happy with me.

I just think she seemed happier at the shelter <<sniff, sniff>>
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Old 12-14-2009, 02:19 PM
479 posts, read 1,017,148 times
Reputation: 548
Don't beat yourself up. Could be that she just likes to be around other cats. Did you spend enough time with her at the shelter to know that this is not how she normally behaves? And it may take awhile, a week is pretty short. Remember that she was at the shelter (home in her mind), then went to a strange place, back 'home', to another strange place, back 'home', then to another strange place. In her mind, she may be just waiting to be returned 'home'. Eventually she should figure out what home really is. All of this back and forth would be hard on a person, let alone a kitty that doesn't really know what is going on. I believe that if you feed and take care of her, she will like you just fine. Good luck!
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Old 12-14-2009, 02:21 PM
Location: Alaska
4,449 posts, read 2,431,878 times
Reputation: 5930
This is an adult cat - right? If she is healthy (including no fleas), I wouldn't worry too much. Adult cats have their little spurts of energy but most of the time my cats just lounge around. Eat, walk, look out the window, sit, get petted, drink, go to sleep.

Maybe I'll go stir them up now with a little bit of catnip
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Old 12-14-2009, 03:00 PM
Location: Colorado
4,287 posts, read 8,642,476 times
Reputation: 4269
It will take a while before she gets used to you and trusts you enough to start being your new best friend. She's in new environment, probably feeling a tad insecure, still getting to know you and her new home, not trusting you just yet. It took me and my older cat 6 months before we started settling down into a proper relationship so don't give up on her.
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Old 12-14-2009, 03:00 PM
1,688 posts, read 4,653,726 times
Reputation: 1826
Originally Posted by slowes View Post
I am starting to feel a little sensitive about this, as in whether or not she is happy with me.
You really need to stop thinking along those lines - it's not helpful to you, and it's not helpful to the cat.

This isn't about you, this is about a cat that has had a significant upheaval - you mention her being returned to the shelter twice... in what sort of time frame are you talking about here? So yours is the third home in ... how long? Poor puss. Given that twice she's gone to a home and twice been returned, if you were the cat, what would be your attitude? A tad bit wary I'd hazard a guess. She does have her reasons.

How bad is the licking and scratching? Have you switched her food from what she was being fed at the shelter because she could be reacting to that and be feeling generally uncomfortable and unhappy. If she's overgrooming, that would in all probability be caused by stress.

You mention no other cat in your house so I'm assuming she went from a cat-full shelter to being alone. That's a big ask if the cat is sociable, a boon if the cat is not. Regardless, she needs time to adjust and history has taught her not to bother.

Give her time (a week is nothing in cat-time), respect her space while offering love and attention should she want it. But for the welfare of the cat, stop taking it personally.
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Old 12-14-2009, 03:06 PM
Location: Brooklyn, New York
445 posts, read 913,839 times
Reputation: 516
Give it time. At least she isn't hiding! Just like people, some cats are slower to warm up to a new situation. I have a friend who had a similar experience when she adopted an adult cat. It took a couple of months but now the cat is sitting in her lap!
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Old 12-14-2009, 04:01 PM
Location: Wichita, KS
1,463 posts, read 2,425,110 times
Reputation: 911
Your cat will get there. right now she is getting along with you on her terms. I had an older cat that I adopted that was doing what yours is doing. At least she is on the surface and enjoying time on your bed. Take it as a sign. Before you know it, you and the cat will be buddies. Respect her terms and space. Given the cats history I can see why we're stand offish!
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Old 12-14-2009, 06:40 PM
Location: Massachusetts
3,675 posts, read 5,840,266 times
Reputation: 4071
My cat was very standoffish when I first got her (she still kind of is--a real independent type) and spent all of her time on my bed. In fact, most of the first pictures that I have of her are of her lying on the bed. She had also been returned (once) to the shelter. She behaved the same way as your cat but I think it was b/c she was not feeling 100%: the shelter gave her a clean bill of health--as they always do--and then, when I took her to the vet the next day, they told me that she had coccydia, which has now cleared up (two years later).

She is not a very affectionate cat but has really come into her own, which makes me happy; I like thinking that I have been able to contribute to that happiness and confidence. However, no matter what the temperament of your cat, in time, you will share special "new cat" moments that you will never forget (mine were waking up in the middle of the night b/c she was playing--without me, of course--on the bed; and waking up in the middle of the night b/c she was hovering over my face, purring loudly, as I slept, which caused me to wake up and yell "What are you doing?!")

I would get her checked out at the vet first, then I would be very patient!
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Old 12-14-2009, 06:41 PM
Location: ST paul MN
622 posts, read 994,419 times
Reputation: 301
Give her time the cat has been through ALOT!!

The best thing you can do is help her feed sacure pet with, play with her but give her her space.
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Old 12-14-2009, 07:01 PM
479 posts, read 1,017,148 times
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Another thing to keep in mind, the fact that she is comfortable enough with you to go off and sleep might mean she feels fairly comfortable with you. If she didn't, she might not be able to sleep. Just spitballing.
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