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C2004-07

Dear Christopher Cat

I have eight cats, and one of them, Noel, stalks and bullies the others. When he attacks Fluffy, he bites down especially hard. What can I do?

Christopher Responds

I must confess – because if I don’t, Daisy will spill the beans – that I used to attack two of the other cats in our house. I’ll share Mom’s secrets for reforming me.

Inter-cat aggression sometimes occurs when there are too many cats for the size of the home, so don’t add more cats to your family. Spay/neuter any of the cats who aren’t yet.

To stop Noel’s aggressive behavior, squirt him with water from a squirt gun or water bottle at the first sign he’s even thinking about attacking Fluffy. Some people make loud noises to stop aggressive behavior, but that will startle Fluffy too.

Be sure your home has adequate food bowls, water bowls, litter boxes and resting places, so Fluffy and Noel won’t have to quarrel over them.

Have Noel wear a cat-safe (breakaway or elastic) collar with a bell, so Fluffy and the others will know where he is.
Spray Feliway on Noel’s collar, or plug Feliway diffusers into electrical sockets around the house. Feliway contains synthetic pheromones, chemicals released from scent glands, that calm cats and help us feel less territorial and aggressive.

If these techniques don’t work, talk with your veterinarian about medications for Noel (to make him less aggressive) and possibly for Fluffy (to decrease his fear and help him feel more self-confident).

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