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....while we're on the subject of cats.............

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  • ....while we're on the subject of cats.............

    can someone, anyone, shed some light on why my 17 year old Siamese mix, neutered female has started 'vocalizing' (no....HOWLING) at all hours of the night? I took her to the vet and all her blood work came back fine for a gereatric kitty. They even checked her thyroid. I had her teeth cleaned and one extracted, and she is still howling in the middle of the night. I get up and feed her, and sometimes that helps, but most of the time it doesn't!

    Dr. said it could be emotional and might need mood altering drugs! I don't think so..........not unless she will share them with me!

    you think she might be suffering from feline senility?

    Last edited by sjm; 12-08-2002, 07:13 PM.

  • #2
    I vote for the tranqulizer route for the cat. My daughter has a Siamese who is taking to sleep in her hair at night and she's trying to work that problem out at this time with behavior modification therapy. Not getting anywhere. Anyway, had a similar problem with an old dog who was starting to suffer from dementia and giving him a sedative was the only answer. I really can't function if I don't get a decent sleep so it was the only solution.


    • #3
      I had 2 male siamese mix and they lived to about 17 and 19. They were both neutered too but I can't remember them ever doing that. I feel for you. That's not what I would want to be doing all night at my age either. I wish I had an answer instead of comisserations. Maybe some of the others can help. There seem to be alot of cat lovers on this site. Good luck. Hope things work out soon for you.


      • #4
        This is funny that you wrote this as I just read about this in an "ask a vet" type column in our paper. Someone wrote with this exact situation.

        The vet agreed with yours - he said at that age cat, there can be some senility that causes them to fret. So it would probably make your cat feel better.

        Poor old kitty.
        Last edited by Sharon Brunson; 02-09-2002, 07:36 PM.


        • #5
          I say give the poor cat whatever it takes. In the long run, it could be a mood altering thing for *you* if the cat takes them. You can only go so long without good sleep.



          • #6
            I had the misfortune to have a friends siamese drop off the perch while I was looking after her house while she was on holiday !
            General opinion was that the cat was used to only tinned catfood and during my stay it had feasted on off cuts of smoked salmon, beef, chicken, strong beer etc. The end result was similar to a prisoner used to a slim diet seen off by rich food. Still, puss died in style.


            • #7
              I guess you could say you killed them with kindness.


              • #8

                Only the one passed away the other must have had a higher luxury tolerance. The second one passed away not long after (Both old) I think the shock of going back on tinned slop after 4 weeks of banqueting was too much for it. I'll have to learn to use a tin opener


                • #9
                  Cats (as are all pets) are subject to various neuroses. However happy they might be, it's an unnatural lifestyle for an essentially wild animal. Plus, siamese are fond of vocalizing, so what you see as disturbing might actually be something quite benign.

                  I've had a couple of neurotic cats. The solution for both of them was a radical change of some sort to distract them. Then they forget about the neurotic behavior (or behaviour, since its a UKitty).

                  In one case, a previously dainty and lovable cat took to some rather undainty and unlovable behavior right after I got married. The marriage brought along two other cats. The vet suggested we switch to 3 food bowls, 3 water bowls, and 3 kitty liter pans. Short version is that it worked (and we were eventually able to go back to one pan and one water bowl, but kept the three food bowls since they were all quite the pigs).

                  The other case was a bit more severe. One of our cats took to "barbering" herself (ie: licking 100% of the fur off any surface she could reach). The vet (a different one, this was some time later) prescibed the oddest treatment: dog birthcontrol pills. He admitted he had no idea why it worked, but it did work, and almost instantly. We only had to keep dosing her for a couple of weeks. By then she'd forgotten to remember to lick herself, the behavior was broken, and her hair was starting to grow back.

                  17 is old for a cat, but not unheardof old. Its probably old enough to start feeling the various indignities we all begin to notice once we pass 40. So, without the options of a new red convertable or going to real estate school, perhaps its found a new hobby.

                  Its obvious you love your kitty, and that's the most important thing. Try new things. Make it obvious its getting more attention than usual. New people to pet it. New toys (I can recommend a laser pointer...17 is a bit old to chase around a red dot, but they still enjoy watching, I know this from experience). New food (though not like your vacationer's new food). Maybe brushing for a full hour before bedtime. Anything to make it obvious its more loved than ever. Plus, the more it stays awake during your waking hours, the more it will need to sleep while you're asleep.

                  Even if it does turn out to be more serious (and I hope it doesn't), you'll know its happier than ever in the meantime.
                  Learn by teaching
                  Take responsibility for learning


                  • #10
                    A further thought:
                    Did your vet check its eyes? It could be losing its nightvision and being upset and scared in the dark. Do you leave a light on?
                    Learn by teaching
                    Take responsibility for learning


                    • #11
                      Well, I have given a kitten to an elderly couple (They only spoke spanish, this is relevent later), and after a couple of years, asked that I take the now portly (3 yr old) cat for a couple of weeks while they went on vacation. ANYWAY...

                      This cat was disgustingly spoiled. After I walked in after 12hrs of work it had made it a point to let me know how unhappy she was with me and meowed at me in a very irritating tone while only nipping at her food.

                      She proceeded to shred/nap in the under side of my mattress.

                      I told it to eat, and tried talking to it, and it suddenly occured to me; it has only heard spanish, and proceeded to talk to her in spanish.

                      Charming cat overall, it lost weight. We got along grandly. It was fascinated with the ducks outside my window.

                      When I took the new slimmer cat to the couple, she proceeded to tattle on me, at length in a series of meows that I swear she created that were the equal of kitty curses.

                      Oddly, the couple noticed she was thinner and looked at me as though I grew another head.

                      To this day (this was several years ago) that cat STILL looks at me suspiciously.

                      and yes, she gained her weight back within a couple of months,



                      • #12
                        Doug, you are not kidding about the laser pointers! My cat will chase that thing for hours and always has the strangest look on his face when he can't catch it.


                        • #13
                          Just a thought. Is your cat new to Florida living? When we moved down here from the northeast(USA) our cat was 12 years old and it took him a good half a year to acclimate to the new surroundings.He actually turned very aggressive for awhile.Wouldn't it be nice if our pets could speak. It's really like dealing with a baby in trying to figure out what's troubling them.


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