Fear of cats

Sunflower2

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Hi I wasn't sure were to post this so move is needed please.

new here I thought it may help if I give you a little background info so you will be able to understand a bit better and hopefully help with giving advice

I am an animal lover I love all animals but cats and horses are both my number 1's I love both equally and for a long time I've been waiting till the right time to get a cat , my dilemma started in 2019 when I , with the help of my sister left an abusive relationship and I had no were to go so I moved in with my sister who lived at the time on her own and I moved in with her and still to this I live with her as I am unable to live on my own due to how the abuse affected me I can't live on my own but I also will never go into another relationship and I've felt the safest I've felt in a long time with my sister and we're both the same we both don't want kids ( more my sister can't and I don't ) and we both have no interest in relationships ( she was in a long-term relationship and he was her soulmate but he passed away a few years ago and she is loyal to him and knows no one will ever be as perfect for her as him and she always tell me it's better to have loved and lost than never loved at all) so what I'm trying to say is were both going to be living together for ever.

Now the issue is I'm a huge cat lover my sister is on the other side she loves dogs their her favorite and she finally is in a position to get one and has spent years researching the right breed and the right breeder and when I moved in , in 2019 she made sure I was happy to live with a Golden retriever and being an animal lover my awnser was yes and she will be bringing her puppy home next year and I asked her if she's ok to live with a cat as like her I'd planned to get a cat for awhile and she said yes she would be she is scared of cats and if she could get over that then she would be ok and she knows nothing about cats unlike dogs were she's read book after book on dog behavior and training she's new to cats and knows nothing and the fear comes from being scratched and bitten by a neighbors cat when she was a child and the misconception that cats are evil and attack for no reason ect so I was hoping you could help with advice on what cats are really like to live with and how I can help her with her fear

I was also thinking a more laid back breed would be better I read Ragdolls and British shorthairs are laid back and that British shorthairs are less likely to scratch as quickly than other cats?

Then my sister likes the look of Maine coons as she's read their dog like?

I will be getting an adult cat from rescue but I would prefer to pick a breed and even prefer going to breed rescues

I look forward to hearing from you all
 

Tik cat's mum

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All those breeds you have said make good pets. And so glad you've decided to take a older cat instead of a kitten. But do try to bring a cat into your home that you know a little about it's background. Some Main coons don't act like dog's and some ragdolls don't go floppy, it just depends on the cat. As a starting point try to find one that's lived with dog's before. Talk to the rescue some cat's act differently than they normally would if they are in the rescue and not the home. So maybe one that's been with a foster. I've had dog's and cat's live together fine but training for the dog is a must, puppy's try to play and my advice would be make sure the cat has lots of places high up so it can get away from the dog, because if the pup won't leave the cat alone. Well it will get scatched it's the cat's way of defending itself. Also don't rule out a moggy even though they don't have papers their could be the ideal DSH waiting to be adopted. Also Jackson galaxy has lots of cat behaviour videos on YouTube show them to your sister he says cat's are just misunderstood and that's true. But I'd keep her away from his my cat from hell videos they might put her off. :lol: good luck finding your purrfect cat.
 
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Sunflower2

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Thank you Tik cat's mum Tik cat's mum , I thought an older cat would be a great idea as I know the golden will be here before the cat so I thought an adult cat would be better than a kitten with a dog already in the house.

Is it true most Ragdolls are laid back ect? From what I've read so far I think a ragdoll would be most suited to me
 

Tik cat's mum

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Thank you Tik cat's mum Tik cat's mum , I thought an older cat would be a great idea as I know the golden will be here before the cat so I thought an adult cat would be better than a kitten with a dog already in the house.

Is it true most Ragdolls are laid back ect? From what I've read so far I think a ragdoll would be most suited to me
From what I've read they are a pretty laid back breed. And I did fall in love with one at the cat cafe in my town. He was so laid back even with kid's. If your set on a ragdoll it might be worth your while talking to breeders somtimes they rehome cat's that they are no longer using for breeding at a reduced cost. As long as the cat is used to dog's you shouldn't have a problem. Otherwise I'd go for a kitten they are really adaptable and get used to dog's easily. But then you might want somewhere for the dog to hide from the kitten. :lol:
 
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Sunflower2

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From what I've read they are a pretty laid back breed. And I did fall in love with one at the cat cafe in my town. He was so laid back even with kid's. If your set on a ragdoll it might be worth your while talking to breeders somtimes they rehome cat's that they are no longer using for breeding at a reduced cost. As long as the cat is used to dog's you shouldn't have a problem. Otherwise I'd go for a kitten they are really adaptable and get used to dog's easily. But then you might want somewhere for the dog to hide from the kitten. :lol:
Thanks, I was told by my neighbor who has 3 cats that she would not recommend a kitten with an adult dog as an adult can get to high places easier than a kitten can so interesting you say a kitten is still an option as I'd prefer a kitten as then he can grow up with our Golden.

My sister is a dog behaviorist and so we'll have no issues training him to not only be good with cats but also to leave the cat or kitten we do bring home
 

Tik cat's mum

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Thanks, I was told by my neighbor who has 3 cats that she would not recommend a kitten with an adult dog as an adult can get to high places easier than a kitten can so interesting you say a kitten is still an option as I'd prefer a kitten as then he can grow up with our Golden.

My sister is a dog behaviorist and so we'll have no issues training him to not only be good with cats but also to leave the cat or kitten we do bring home
Yep your neighbour is right a grown cat can get out of the way easier and defend themselves if needed. It's great your sister knows what she's doing with dog's. Both options have pros and cons. The reason I brought kitten's into the house with dog's was I didn't know anyone who needed to rehome a older cat at the time that was used to dog's. But if you can find one it would be a good option. If not maybe a slightly older kitten under 12 months but not so tiny they would they would be trampled under foot, they would still be able to adapt quickly but big enough to get out of the way.
 

neely

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Welcome to TCS! :welcomesign: I'm glad you joined the site and hope you will continue to keep us updated once your new cat or kitten arrives. It's great that you would like to rescue and as Tik cat's mum Tik cat's mum suggested an older kitten or young adult cat might be a good option for you. Keep in mind that not all breeds will necessarily exhibit textbook personality traits. There are many domestic cats that are just as laid back and affectionate as purebred cats. Having lived with both cats and dogs I'm all for a multi-animal household as long as your sister and you put in the time and effort to make it work.👍 Golden Retrievers are a wonderful family dog but like all puppies they like to explore and play.:biggrin:

Regarding your sister's fear of cats it might help for her to go with you when you start looking for the right cat whether at a foster home, rescue organization or animal shelter. Hopefully this way she will be part of the search and will warm up to having a feline in her home. Will she be getting the Golden first or will you adopt your kitten/cat first?

I thought this Article might have some helpful information for you: How To Safely Introduce A Cat And A Dog – TheCatSite Articles
Best of luck and please keep us posted. :goodluck:
 

di and bob

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You might want to consider a kitten. They have no fear and would get close to a dog much quicker than an older cat. but kittens are so mischievous and into everything, They have no limits on their energy and need a lot more supervision and care. an older cat would require being kept separate from the dog for quite a while, and gradual introductions. But they also need a lot less supervision. Kittens also bite and scratch more, not out of wanting to hurt, but out of wanting to play so badly, they forget their manners. a kitten from 6-9 months might be ideal, they need a lot less supervision and are still young enough to adapt to a dog quickly. but they would still need to have a very gradual introduction. Males are much more cuddly and even-tempered than females, in my opinion, almost every cat I have had that is 'buddies' with other cats or dogs has been a neutered male.
Cats do not attack unless provoked or hurt, but they can have what is called redirected aggression which means something scares them so badly they attack whatever is the closest. Not all cats do this. So the chances of you getting a cat that would do this is slim.
Cats do not give their loyalty and affection freely to whoever they feel is dominant like dogs, they are much more independent. You EARN a cat' love, but once you receive it, it is one of this world's greatest treasures.
 

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Yeah I wouldn't recommend a kitten; they're little tornados of claws and teeth, lol. And if she doesn't understand kitten play body language she's likely to be scared by that behavior.

I'd recommend finding a good rescue agency, one that keeps the cats in foster homes. Then ask to meet their gentlest cats who are also used to dogs. Have your sister meet a few and see if she bonds with any of them. If you're really set on a purebred, there are purebred rescues, or find a breeder who has adult retired breeding/show cats who need to find new homes, and set up a meeting.

But noooo, definitely not a kitten!
 
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Sunflower2

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Hi all
Hi all

So I took her to a local rescue and we explained her fear and they started by bringing in one cat a Maine coons who they said is the most friendliest cat they have and he was super cuddly and was so gentle with her , I think he knew and was like hay I'm not gonna kill you , you have nothing to fear and she started to relax around him unfortunately he's been re-homed he's going to his new home on Saturday. She was ok with the other cats but after we left she said I think it's more I don't trust them than I'm fearful she said I just keep looking at them hoping their not going to swipe me or bite me.

She thinks learning cat body language will help her most and that's why I'm asking a question she has which is , is it possible to live with a cat and never get attacked ( never get scratched or bitten ect)?

I think I'll be looking into a main coons but from a breed rescue as she really relaxed around him and I know she really likes that breed
 

di and bob

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The Ragdoll and Persian is another breed that is gentle in purebreds. I have been around cats my whole life, literally hundreds of cats, and can honestly say the ONLY time I was bitten or scratched was when I was doing something to the cat that they didn't like, or that scared them. Like trying to put them in a carrier, capturing ferals or strays, or trying to pick them up when they didn't know I was there, liking concentrating on another cat. Slow movements and calm, low voices always calm an animal. Screaming, moving suddenly, trying to smack or hit a cat almost always results in the cat reacting badly. You have to know YOUR cat. There are cats that have problems with being stroked too much, my precious soulmate was one of those, she got overstimulated and attacked when stroked more than two times. I can honestly say that learning this and stroking her one to two times, eliminated all that. Fortunately, that condition is very rare and is almost exclusive with female cats. Stay away from kittens. they bite and scratch because they don't know any better and get carried away, they have to learn limits. new cats are scared and may bite, go very slow and ALWAYS let them take the lead in approaching. Cats are proud independent creatures. They do not live to please someone alpha in their world like dogs and need the respect they deserve. Learn the signs of a possible attack, bristled tail, raised fur on the back, hissing, growling, and for a second before the attack, dilated pupils. With the cats I have now and have had for 8 years, I can pretty much do anything to them now and they don't bite or scratch, including wiping their rear ends, cutting out hairballs, and crating. Cats are also very clean animals. DO not give a bath or try to trim their claws they don't need it unless very dirty. When you take them to the vet you can ask them to trim claws if they need it, pill them, worm them, or shave their behind. They are much more behaved at the vets. Try to get liquid meds if you need it and add it to a small amount of lickable treat, cats fight back when trying to give them a pill and this eliminates that.
 

Tik cat's mum

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I don't think anyone can say that you can live with a cat and you'll never be scratched or bitten. But I can say like di and bob di and bob said the only time I've ever been scratched by any cat has been when I've been trimming claws, or giving meds. And that was because the cat was trying to get away from me. Learning body language will help understand when to back off. But it's the same with dog's if you don't read them right theirs a chance you'll get bit. I think you have made the right choice going for a older cat, kitten's do not release claws hurt.
 
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Sunflower2

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sorry i dont have any good advice suggestions about the cat just wanted to say welcome to the site glad you survived and are no longer trapped in that abuse and safe living with your sister
Thank you it is the hardest thing in the world to leave but my sister helped me get out , she is way more braver than I am and was not affraid to confront him ( I call her tomb raider as she reminds me of Lara croft) no one Ness's with her or her family.

I promised myself to never put myself in a situation that makes me feel unsafe or unhappy again
 
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Sunflower2

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Thank you all for your amazing advice.

My sister spoke with me this morning and she has told me that she really can't live with a cat and that she knows she will always be afraid of them as she just doesn't trust them and she was completely uncomfortable at the rescue but put on a happy face for me as she really didn't want to disappoint me and I understood what she was saying and I agree it's unfair to the cat as well as her and she said when we get our golden I see him as ours not just my dog but with a cat I'll always see him as yours.

So I've chosen not to get a cat and just enjoy our golden instead.
 

Tik cat's mum

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Thank you all for your amazing advice.

My sister spoke with me this morning and she has told me that she really can't live with a cat and that she knows she will always be afraid of them as she just doesn't trust them and she was completely uncomfortable at the rescue but put on a happy face for me as she really didn't want to disappoint me and I understood what she was saying and I agree it's unfair to the cat as well as her and she said when we get our golden I see him as ours not just my dog but with a cat I'll always see him as yours.

So I've chosen not to get a cat and just enjoy our golden instead.
It good your sister was honest with you about how she felt. And I think you've made the right decision for you both. Enjoy your golden they are lovely dog's. And when you get your pup don't forget to show us pictures we love dog's too.
 
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