Cat Needs Anti Anxietys Meds?

AppleBlue813

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Hi everyone. I adopted a 1.5 neutered male a couple of months ago. Ever since we got him, he's stand offish about getting pets (he will flatten his chin to the ground almost as if to try and shrink away in hopes we'll stop petting him), he always seems to have pent up energy despite how much I'll play with him. Whenever one of us goes upstairs he races up with us and makes a beeline for his food bowl, scarfing down whatever food is left in his bowl. I actually only feed him twice a day now, because he was hovering food alllll day long if I let him. He is turning into a bit of a bully towards my resident cat BUT there are times the new kitty appears to just want to play and make friends with my older kitty, and other times he is definitely being a bit of a stalker. He gets pretty irritated towards us pretty quickly, but I know he doesn't hate us as he will come lay in the bathroom when we're in there, he loves to stick his face in my husband's shoes, and occasionally he would lay in bed with us, particularly down near our feet. I am going to take him to the vet this week about his behavior, to see if it's an anxiety thing. We think he could've possibly been abused, neglected or in a hoarder situation in his previous home as we noticed he seems to be missing some teeth past his fangs in the back of his mouth on both sides, and he wasn't neutered before arriving at the rescue in October. Has anyone had a kitty with similar behavior and had to put them on some sort of medication? Most importantly, did it help? I've tried Feliway, I've tried CBD, etc. I'm exacerbated at this point and stressed because I don't want my older cat forced to hide but I don't want my new cat to be miserable either. For some additional background, I have 3 litter boxes for 2 cats, and both use the litter boxes without issue. They eat out of their own food bowls, has plenty of water, and no issues with peeing/pooping anywhere outside of their boxes.
 

Azazel

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Cats do not get anxiety the way humans do. This is anthropomorphism at its finest. The unfortunate consequence is we end up pilling animals because of these labels we put on them. Please do not put these human labels on cats. They are not humans.

Is he neutered now?
 
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AppleBlue813

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Cats do not get anxiety the way humans do. This is anthropomorphism at its finest. The unfortunate consequence is we end up pilling animals because of these labels we put on them. Please do not put these human labels on cats. They are not humans.

Is he neutered now?
I'm not putting any human label on him- it's not unheard of for some cats to be so stressed out due to past trauma, that maybe meds are the only way to help, which is why I'm asking for advice from anyone who has gone through something similar. I don't know what other nautral options could be available that I haven't already tried. Yes he is neutered. They both are.
 

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All sounds like normal cat behavior to me. I'm not hearing any signs of an issue that requires medication.

Work on your bond with the cat the old fashion way. There are a ton of good articles in the Articles tab above that can help.

Two feedings tends to be not enough for a cat and increases feelings of hunger. The can get enough calories from two feedings, but they have more hunger and that encourages more food obsession.
 

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He sounds like fun, young cat, I don’t really see anything in your description that would be a reason to worry. Not every cat likes pets, especially if they are forced pets. My cat had the nickname “Can’t touch this” as she hated being touched, but with time and space she started asking for it herself (sleeping on my lap right now). He’s younger than the other cat, probably more playful, it’s understandable that the older cat don’t always appreciate him around. As long as they get on with each other otherwise, I see no reason to worry about their relationship. Is there anything else that makes you think he’s stressed?

Edited to ask: are you feeding him dry only or wet as well? Wet food seems to be more filling for cats so it’s worth introducing if he’s not getting it. It has lots of other benefits, too.
 
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AppleBlue813

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It's hard to explain in words, but I've grown up having cats my whole life and I've never come in contact with a cat like this. His tail swishes whenever we try to interact with him (except when I feed him- then he likes me of course haha), he stalks my other cat like when he uses the bathroom or goes to eat. I mean his eyes turn into saucers. I will play and play with him to get some of his energy out and it doesn't seem to do that much. Sometimes when he is really amped up, I can see him ripple his fur and that's when I try to play with him some more. He will often sit behind my other cat and wait before sneak attacking with a hard whap/swipe to my other cat's backside.
 

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I'm not putting any human label on him- it's not unheard of for some cats to be so stressed out due to past trauma, that maybe meds are the only way to help, which is why I'm asking for advice from anyone who has gone through something similar. I don't know what other nautral options could be available that I haven't already tried. Yes he is neutered. They both are.
Your language of “past trauma,” “stress,” and “anxiety” puts human sociocultural concepts onto a different species who doesn’t exist in our world, doesn’t have our culture, or our language. The better approach would be to try and understand why he behaves the way he does from the perspective of a cat. As others mentioned, his behavior sounds normal. No two cats are alike and it’s possible that you just haven’t had a cat like him before. I don’t think assigning “anxiety” to him and pilling him is the answer. His behaviors are normal for a cat. He would only need to be pilled if we are putting human expectations on him... but he’s not human.
 

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Do you know his history before he came to the shelter? Is it possible that he was a street cat and never had a home? If so, maybe he’s still getting used to being indoor cat living in a house with humans? I’m theorizing as maybe he sounds different to you if he never was around humans. Maybe no one ever played with him before you?
Also, for some tomcats it takes some time for the hormones to leave completely after neutering, usually around a month, but in some cases maybe longer? I don’t think it’s the case with such young cat, but who knows, maybe he still has some of it left?
Anyway, I’d give him lots of time, love and patience and I’m pretty sure he’ll adjust to his new life soon if you feel he’s not comfortable. After all, you’ve had him only couple of months.
Just make sure your older boy has some space where he could escape from him to get some rest.
 
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AppleBlue813

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According to the shelter, he was owner surrender because she couldn't afford the pet deposit at her apartment complex. Of course, there could be more to the real story but I'll never know, which is why I wonded if he had been abused or neglected in his last home which could explain his missing teeth and general behavior. Right now, we keep the new cat in our bedroom when we are at work, so my older kitty has a break and can be in his space without worry. I thought about the hormones thing as well, at least in the beginning, but it has been 3 months since his neutering. When I first saw him, he was being cute playful which is why I ended up putting an application in for him, instead of the cat I had originally went to see.
 

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Personally I don’t think if separating him for the majority of the day could help their relationship; it may cause him being too excited to finally be with the older cat. Plus the older cat would only associate him with being overactive with him, if they don’t have a chance to relax in each other’s company during a day. Any way the older cat could get a space where he can retreat when he wants to that would not require locking him away? A box where only one cat could fit? High shelf space fitting one cat only?
Anyway, this seems like normal dynamics between two cats, one being significantly older than the other. The younger one hopefully sooner or later learns the boundaries of the older one, but it’s natural he will want and try to play. It’s really not surprising and certainly not a reason to medicate him. They haven’t been around each other for long, give them time to work their relationship out. Does the older cat avoid him when the younger one is not being playful?

If he likes healthy treats, it may be a good way to make him more open to his humans, I’d try freeze dried snacks with him. I wouldn’t try to pet him nor pick him up at all.
 

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Well, a 1.5 year old cat might average say an 8 out of 10 on the activity scale, and you are used to that, but of course there is going to be a 10 out of 10 out there somewhere because cats vary. And you may have one. With such a cat, of course you can't drain his energy by playing with him. That is like trying to drain the ocean with a thimble. Its still a normal healthy cat. Doesn't mean a 10 out of 10 isn't difficult for the owner of course! The good news is that almost all cats start to decrease in activity level to some degree by age 2. Maybe not by as much as you'd like, but it will likely be noticeable.

Since you are a cat person, you already know that a cat that is in the mood to play will not accept petting. Sounds like the issue here isn't necessarily that this cat isn't bonded to you, but rather he is *always* so amped up that it is hard to find time to pet him. This is super common with 4-5 month old kittens, but admittedly usually by 1.5, still a very active age, there would be a more sizeable period of time when they are calmer. Can you pet the cat in the rare moments it is tired? That is quite often the only time you can pet a kitten, and if you have the rare 1.5 year old that is still kitten level active, it should be the same.

With the rippling fur, sounds like the zoomies maybe. Is this your first cat that has had the "zoomies"? The zoomies is a normal cat thing, where for 10 minutes or so at a time, a cat can act almost like its on drugs, running around chasing nothing, bouncing off walls and the like. On the 1 to 10 scale, the cat temporarily goes to 20. Some cats, especially young ones, can have more than one episode a day.
 
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A couple of months is not that long in cat perspective. I think if you just give it time, he will start to settle in and be less "rambunctious".
I've had my new crew of kitties for just over a year now. It took over 6 months for my shy kitty to not cower from an outreached hand. We are still working on an other kitties aversion to being picked up (we've made great strides but it's not quite there yet). This same cat accepts pets on the face and head area if we use one hand, but will back away if two hands are outstretched (like using two hands to scratch the underside of his chin/cheeks).
Then there's our rambunctious kitty who at over 3 years old, is still a little instigator and wants to play ALL THE TIME. He has learned boundaries as the other two will let him know when they've had enough with little swats and hisses, and he will (90% of the time) listen to them. It's normal cat talk so nothing to be concerned about. He's in "the zoomies" state way more often than the other two, but they all get along fabulously.

I really think that this is a matter of time and patience and not something you need to be too concerned about, but a vet visit is always a good thing to be sure.
Has he had his teeth thoroughly checked by the vet? There could be some stress if he has any tooth or mouth pain.
Bynx - the instigator kitty, had a broken canine tooth. We had to save up a bit before we could get it taken out. And although he never displayed any negative behaviors (litter issues, showed pain, aggressive, etc...). It does seem like there is a level or calm with him now that it's out, compared to before. He's still a little crap disturber, and always "on the go" but not quite as "frantic" about it if that makes sense. He displayed feline hyperesthesia type symptoms before (not diagnosed, the symptoms just fit) and stress is a factor that can make those symptoms appear or get worse. But with the tooth gone, it's not as bad.
 
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AppleBlue813

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When he has what I call the crazies, I'll try to play with him so he directs his attention away from pouncing my older dog or my other cat. I think the only time he ever purrs or accepts pets is right after he wakes up (and I almost never see him sleeping lol! It's crazy). I am going to take him to the vet to have his teeth checked- we didn't even know he was missing teeth until my husband was rubbing the cat's mouth (which he tolerates sometimes) and noticed the gaps in his mouth. He eats normally and doesn't seem to be in pain, and his gums look healthy but I'd rather be safe than sorry. Unfortunately, he does not like wet food and he will eat certain cat treats. He did eat a small piece of boiled chicken out of my hand yesterday but he normally snubs anything that isn't his dry food or temptations cat treats
 
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