I adopted a cat and i feel guilty, why?

nicolew1438

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I recently adopted a 1 yr old male cat (he was fixed the day after I adopted him) and he's as sweet as can be but all I've been feeling since I've adopted him is anxious, depressed, and unmotivated. Despite thinking about this for months and believing I was ready, I don't think I am. I told my sister about my post adoption anxiety and depression, I cried myself to sleep the other night. I've had cats all my life (but they've been female cats). I don't resent him I just...don't think I'm good enough for him and there's someone better out there to love and care for him. I feel like a shitty person for saying this. I'm not blind I know cats take time for everything. I think overestimated myself and I think I find myself hating myself for realizing too late that I'm not good enough for him but at the same time I feel so guilty of thinking of rehoming him (I refuse to take him back to the shelter). I'm 20 and I'll be 21 in four weeks and I'm in college, my roommate has gone home for the summer so I'm alone. I've heard and read about post adoption remorse, I went into this so prepared and so happy thinking I could do this but I feel like if I continue telling myself I'm okay and can it's gonna hurt him more than me and I don't want that, I want him to be okay and happy. What do I do? Is something wrong with me?
 

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Hi N nicolew1438 and welcome to TCS.

I can understand your feeling, because I felt that way before.
So my first question is:
Have you recently lost a cat and this boy has come soon after your loss? Or you were still in the grief process over that loss?

After I lost my cat 4 years ago, I went through a rather long time when I didn't want another cat in my life, though I was missing a cat next to me. So I had the chance to foster/adopt two kittens at two different times, and both times I kind of... regretted my decision? I was in what you call a post adoption anxiety or remorse, I felt I wasn't ready for them, or that I was the right person for them, or they were the right cat for me, or maybe simply it wasn't the right time. Eventually I rehomed them, both cats are now fine and happy, I know this for sure, but I will never forget my decision to give them away, and sometimes I still regret it, the way I acted is quite disgusting.

Yes, a bond between you and your cat doesn't come at once and naturally, you need to build it in time, so I would advise you to take your time, spend some time with him, play with him and see if he likes you. Don't let him down, he has no fault, he might love you already and just wants to be loved in return.
 
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nicolew1438

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Hi N nicolew1438 and welcome to TCS.

I can understand your feeling, because I felt that way before.
So my first question is:
Have you recently lost a cat and this boy has come soon after your loss? Or you were still in the grief process over that loss?

After I lost my cat 4 years ago, I went through a rather long time when I didn't want another cat in my life, though I was missing a cat next to me. So I had the chance to foster/adopt two kittens at two different times, and both times I kind of... regretted my decision? I was in what you call a post adoption anxiety or remorse, I felt I wasn't ready for them, or that I was the right person for them, or they were the right cat for me, or maybe simply it wasn't the right time. Eventually I rehomed them, both cats are now fine and happy, I know this for sure, but I will never forget my decision to give them away, and sometimes I still regret it, the way I acted is quite disgusting.

Yes, a bond between you and your cat doesn't come at once and naturally, you need to build it in time, so I would advise you to take your time, spend some time with him, play with him and see if he likes you. Don't let him down, he has no fault, he might love you already and just wants to be loved in return.
Hi thank you for the kind response. I haven't lost a cat recently, my parents have a cat and she's of the grumpy variety but I love her. The cat we had before her died when she was 19 and I was 10-11, my parents raised that cat since she was weeks old and she had a bit of grump but was a sweetheart. I don't know why I feel the way I do. He just got neutered so I keep him in my bathroom but I take him into my bedroom under supervision and he's not allowed too much activity according to his vet so I mostly just pet on him and hold him. I have moments where I think I'm doing better then later on it hits me and I don't know how to cope. I'm just worried I'm doing more harm than good by keeping him when there could be another person or even a family that would do much better. I don't resent him, he's a sweetheart and he's done nothing wrong in my mind. I resent myself for feeling this way. I've talked to my sister and she's told me to take deep breaths and she's confident I'll be a good cat mama but I'm worried that I was confident I was ready but I'm feeling I'm not. I just feel like an awful person for all of this and I'm not a victim here as I made a decision to bring him into my life.
 
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nicolew1438

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Hi thank you for the kind response. I haven't lost a cat recently, my parents have a cat and she's of the grumpy variety but I love her. The cat we had before her died when she was 19 and I was 10-11, my parents raised that cat since she was weeks old and she had a bit of grump but was a sweetheart. I don't know why I feel the way I do. He just got neutered so I keep him in my bathroom but I take him into my bedroom under supervision and he's not allowed too much activity according to his vet so I mostly just pet on him and hold him. I have moments where I think I'm doing better then later on it hits me and I don't know how to cope. I'm just worried I'm doing more harm than good by keeping him when there could be another person or even a family that would do much better. I don't resent him, he's a sweetheart and he's done nothing wrong in my mind. I resent myself for feeling this way. I've talked to my sister and she's told me to take deep breaths and she's confident I'll be a good cat mama but I'm worried that I was confident I was ready but I'm feeling I'm not. I just feel like an awful person for all of this and I'm not a victim here as I made a decision to bring him into my life.
I also feel there's the possibility I may have adopted a too young of a cat as I originally was looking to adopt this older seven year old cat but I never got response back from the rescue after a month.
Hi N nicolew1438 and welcome to TCS.

I can understand your feeling, because I felt that way before.
So my first question is:
Have you recently lost a cat and this boy has come soon after your loss? Or you were still in the grief process over that loss?

After I lost my cat 4 years ago, I went through a rather long time when I didn't want another cat in my life, though I was missing a cat next to me. So I had the chance to foster/adopt two kittens at two different times, and both times I kind of... regretted my decision? I was in what you call a post adoption anxiety or remorse, I felt I wasn't ready for them, or that I was the right person for them, or they were the right cat for me, or maybe simply it wasn't the right time. Eventually I rehomed them, both cats are now fine and happy, I know this for sure, but I will never forget my decision to give them away, and sometimes I still regret it, the way I acted is quite disgusting.

Yes, a bond between you and your cat doesn't come at once and naturally, you need to build it in time, so I would advise you to take your time, spend some time with him, play with him and see if he likes you. Don't let him down, he has no fault, he might love you already and just wants to be loved in return.
I also don't know if him being post neutered surgery is whats stressing me out and causing these mental health issues to be exacerbated as he's not allowed a lot activity and jumping. I ended up ordering a very large crate in hopes that would help him and keep the jumping risk low which could open his incision. I don't plan on having the crate and just leaving him but I feel this would allow him to see the rest of my shared apartment but also be more confined like the vet wanted and I'd just sit on the living room floor nearby and pet on him with the door open. I feel like I can't narrow down or figure out the problem with myself.
 
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nicolew1438

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I also feel there's the possibility I may have adopted a too young of a cat as I originally was looking to adopt this older seven year old cat but I never got response back from the rescue after a month.

I also don't know if him being post neutered surgery is whats stressing me out and causing these mental health issues to be exacerbated as he's not allowed a lot activity and jumping. I ended up ordering a very large crate in hopes that would help him and keep the jumping risk low which could open his incision. I don't plan on having the crate and just leaving him but I feel this would allow him to see the rest of my shared apartment but also be more confined like the vet wanted and I'd just sit on the living room floor nearby and pet on him with the door open. I feel like I can't narrow down or figure out the problem with myself.
I don't think his age is the source of any problem because my parents current 11 yr old cat was 6 months when we got her but it was a thought that passed me.
 

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No wonder you feel overwhelmed, he's still in recovery. How many days since his surgery? So far you've only met his nervous and "sick/recovering" side. After a few days it should be ok to let him roam one room. I say only one room because he's not familiar with your place yet and don't want either of you to get more overwhelmed.

If you've been able to keep him calm after surgery your doing great! Mine have always wanted to run around the next morning. I've only been a little successful in stopping them and they've all been fine.

You're already a great cat Mom! Look how much you care!
 

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I would check with the vet and see how long he is supposed to keep his activity level down. Most cats who are neutered are not restricted nearly as long (some not at all) as females when they are spayed.

I think the crate is a good idea if you have to keep him quiet for longer, so he can be with you more and see the rest of your home. I also think once he is allowed more freedom you might begin to feel differently. It is generally a bit of a harder, more stressful time for people when their cats have gone through some sort of surgery and are rehabilitating. It's probably a bit more difficult to bond when this is going on too, especially since he was spending a lot of his time in your bathroom.
 
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nicolew1438

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No wonder you feel overwhelmed, he's still in recovery. How many days since his surgery? So far you've only met his nervous and "sick/recovering" side. After a few days it should be ok to let him roam one room. I say only one room because he's not familiar with your place yet and don't want either of you to get more overwhelmed.

If you've been able to keep him calm after surgery your doing great! Mine have always wanted to run around the next morning. I've only been a little successful in stopping them and they've all been fine.

You're already a great cat Mom! Look how much you care!
His surgery was Thursday the 2nd of June. I've blocked my bed since it's pretty high up to keep him from jumping with stuff but he's done it a couple of times and I tell him off and say no in a firm voice like I've used with my sister's car and my parents cat, he also jumped on my bathroom counter too and it's made me panic and paranoid about his incision which is what prompted me to order the crate to be safe. Mostly when I watch him in my room he lays under my bed or under my desk by me and my computer. He's only allowed in my bedroom and bathroom and I started letting him in my room Saturday after his surgery.
 
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nicolew1438

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I would check with the vet and see how long he is supposed to keep his activity level down. Most cats who are neutered are not restricted nearly as long (some not at all) as females when they are spayed.

I think the crate is a good idea if you have to keep him quiet for longer, so he can be with you more and see the rest of your home. I also think once he is allowed more freedom you might begin to feel differently. It is generally a bit of a harder, more stressful time for people when their cats have gone through some sort of surgery and are rehabilitating. It's probably a bit more difficult to bond when this is going on too, especially since he was spending a lot of his time in your bathroom.
According to my vet and the instructions she gave me he needs to be confined and have low activity for fourteen days (I take him back June 16th for a check up and the rest of his shots). I specifically got the crate after he jumped on my high bed a couple of times and jumped on my bathroom counter top. It made me paranoid and panicked when he did it. I'm trying to avoid that as much as possible and I also don't wanna risk him finding out there's something behind my shower curtain (it's one of those bathtub showers so he'd have to jump to get in and he's little bugger about that) and him getting in the stuff there (there's a specific medical wash I have to use and it's tightly capped but if a cat has a will it will find a way). I just don't want to risk him ending up hurt.
 

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It sounds like you are doing all the right things! I am sure the shelter said to keep an eye on his surgical site and make sure he isn't over grooming it. That is probably the most important aspect of his recovery, and the faster it heals the sooner he can resume activity. I personally think that 14 days seems extreme, but you have to do what you feel most comfortable with. Again, the crate is a good idea to help protect him, but it will also allow the two of you to spend more time together too!
 
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nicolew1438

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It sounds like you are doing all the right things! I am sure the shelter said to keep an eye on his surgical site and make sure he isn't over grooming it. That is probably the most important aspect of his recovery, and the faster it heals the sooner he can resume activity. I personally think that 14 days seems extreme, but you have to do what you feel most comfortable with. Again, the crate is a good idea to help protect him, but it will also allow the two of you to spend more time together too!
I just hope with the crate it will help him and me (especially him) and I hope by the time he's allowed to "go wild" and not be confined, my issues have simmered down. The last thing I want is for his healing to be done and he's comfortable and happy and I'm over to the side still feeling awful. It's not fair to him.
 

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Think of it this way - he will recover better under your care than being returned to the shelter, while waiting for another adopter. And there are many cats who are watched under the care of a foster and are later adopted out. Most do very well. Just think of yourself as a foster for now and see where it goes. I will tell you - there are also a lot of what they call 'foster failures' because the caretaker just couldn't end up parting with the cat after a while!
 
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nicolew1438

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Think of it this way - he will recover better under your care than being returned to the shelter, while waiting for another adopter. And there are many cats who are watched under the care of a foster and are later adopted out. Most do very well. Just think of yourself as a foster for now and see where it goes. I will tell you - there are also a lot of what they call 'foster failures' because the caretaker just couldn't end up parting with the cat after a while!
I'm ready to see where it goes and I'm hoping for the best. I did read from another vet hospital site that for male cats post neutering it's seven days but I think I might do closer to fourteen and do ten days. I think seven is too early and fourteen is too long, cats do heal faster than people but even with people there's a point where too long is too long and they can become stagnant and it's not good for the patient.
 
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nicolew1438

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Think of it this way - he will recover better under your care than being returned to the shelter, while waiting for another adopter. And there are many cats who are watched under the care of a foster and are later adopted out. Most do very well. Just think of yourself as a foster for now and see where it goes. I will tell you - there are also a lot of what they call 'foster failures' because the caretaker just couldn't end up parting with the cat after a while!
So right now I have him in my room and I have videos for cats playing from my laptop and he seems very entranced, but I'm expecting his crate tomorrow and I was supposed to get his scratching post, new collar, some calming treats, and a few other things yesterday but USPS failed to notify me they arrived for delivery so I'm still waiting on that. I'm hoping regular treats and calming treats will help him adjust to the time he has to spend in the crate especially when I'm at work. I will take your advice and for now, view this as fostering for now.
 
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nicolew1438

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I want to thank everyone in this thread for your kind and supportive words, I'm gonna go forward with a positive attitude, his crate comes in tomorrow, some other stuff for him arrived today, and I'll make sure to update everyone when Obsidian's confinement ends on Sunday on how he's doing!
 

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What a nice name - he's a gem! And, if he turns out to be a crazy 1 yo terror, the volcanic glass description for this gemstone may also apply! Please do keep us posted!!!
 
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nicolew1438

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What a nice name - he's a gem! And, if he turns out to be a crazy 1 yo terror, the volcanic glass description for this gemstone may also apply! Please do keep us posted!!!
Will do! I also plan on looking into visiting the counselor therapist my college has, I'm hoping they can help me out too and help with this adjustment period on my end because he's doing great and I need to make sure I keep an eye on myself so I can make sure he's happy and well taken care of.
 

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According to my vet and the instructions she gave me he needs to be confined and have low activity for fourteen days (I take him back June 16th for a check up and the rest of his shots). I specifically got the crate after he jumped on my high bed a couple of times and jumped on my bathroom counter top. It made me paranoid and panicked when he did it. I'm trying to avoid that as much as possible and I also don't wanna risk him finding out there's something behind my shower curtain (it's one of those bathtub showers so he'd have to jump to get in and he's little bugger about that) and him getting in the stuff there (there's a specific medical wash I have to use and it's tightly capped but if a cat has a will it will find a way). I just don't want to risk him ending up hurt.
Allow me to say that I have never heard of any boy that needs two weeks of limited activity after neutering.
I didn't restricted my previous cat for that long even when she had a heavy and invasive surgery some years ago, with lots of stitches along her belly.
Even my outdoor cat who had THIS SURGERY was limited in his movements longer than two days.

I have fixed dozens of cats in my life.
Girls were given one week max of restricted activity, some had to wear the cone for a few days, but all of them were free to play in shorter than a week.
Boys were limited for a day or two.
In my opinion two weeks is way too much and is bad for the cat who could be able to move and play much earlier than prescripted. And it's bad for you who are being in an anxiety state uselessly.
 

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So right now I have him in my room and I have videos for cats playing from my laptop and he seems very entranced, but I'm expecting his crate tomorrow and I was supposed to get his scratching post, new collar, some calming treats, and a few other things yesterday but USPS failed to notify me they arrived for delivery so I'm still waiting on that. I'm hoping regular treats and calming treats will help him adjust to the time he has to spend in the crate especially when I'm at work. I will take your advice and for now, view this as fostering for now.
I would ask your vet if she's sure your cat needs such a long restriction. In my opinion, if he's able to run his life in an easier way, with more interactions with you and his environment, the bond you will create between you will be stronger, and you'll overcome that sense of guilt and remorse.
 
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nicolew1438

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I would ask your vet if she's sure your cat needs such a long restriction. In my opinion, if he's able to run his life in an easier way, with more interactions with you and his environment, the bond you will create between you will be stronger, and you'll overcome that sense of guilt and remorse.
I made sure to ask her on my way out with him and she was very insistent 14 days but I've decided only 10 days instead after looking at other vet hospital sites recovery time. I don't know why she said 14 but I'm being safe and doing ten and not 14. Just to be safe, I'd rather do less but this is my first time owning cat where he recently got desexed. All the previous cats in my family were already desexed or I was too young to remember when we got them.
 
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