My cat has went into kill mode towards her housemate, why?

Chadstangracer92

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Serious question time. This kitten, she's about a year old has literally overnight went from being just fine with my other cat, other than some playful fighting, to literally out for blood everything she sees him. She will attack him and not stop till broken up or the other cat gets away from her. Any idea what could be causing such literal 180 degree change in behavior towards her housemate who's she's been around since birth. She's fine otherwise. Still loving towards me and anyone else who is in the house. I've had cats my whole life and have never seen behavior flip like this so drastically in literally a 24 hour period. This is going on day 4 of this.
 

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ArtNJ

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Common reasons include:

(1) seeing/smelling an outside animal, often another cat;
(2) medical - when they don't feel great, they take it out on other animals. Probably less likely since your not seeing other changes
(3) something startling -- something scary happens, like a dish getting dropped, and cat A "blames" cat B who was merely nearby but didn't do anything. This is called "redirected aggression";
(4) sometimes things can change when a cat hits adulthood;
(5) an incident between them, like a stray nail accidentally causing pain;
(6) a cat smelling different is a big source of this, often after a vet or groomer visit.

Sometimes its just not possible to figure out the why and you have to move on to what to do about it. It doesn't necessarily even matter, unless its something capable of recurring like an outside animal. Have you tried a separation to reset things? That is the usual first step.
 

FeebysOwner

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Hi and welcome to TCS despite what brought you here. Looking forward to seeing your responses to the questions/ideas above as that could help shed a lot of light on things. I didn't see mention of the reverse case where the attacking cat is sensing a health condition in the one being attacked, so add that to your list of possibilities.
 

IzzysfureverMom

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Hi and welcome to TCS despite what brought you here. Looking forward to seeing your responses to the questions/ideas above as that could help shed a lot of light on things. I didn't see mention of the reverse case where the attacking cat is sensing a health condition in the one being attacked, so add that to your list of possibilities.
Very important point it does happen unfortunately
 

di and bob

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Redirected aggression. I've had cats like this after a vet visit, they attack any other cat, or pick out one, to attack. i have had it last a week. Try to redirect the attacking cat's attention when she focuses on the other. If she is not spayed, the hormones could be responsible, she is frustrated. i have 'kickeroos' handy to throw towards the attacking cat when they get too intent, they will attack that instead. This usually passes in time.
 

Draco

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I'd try putting baby powder on both cats to get them smelling the same. I always have to do this when one or both cats come back from the vet or they will fight. See if that helps.

Also look around outside to make sure there's no stray cats or animals that might be agitating your kitty. Maybe she can't go after them, she chooses to go after her housemate instead.

If all else fails, take both cats to the vet for checkups. Its possible she isn't feeling well, or something is up with the other kitty that she smells and don't like.
 
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