From Cat Hiss To Purr. From Defensive to Relaxed

“Rehabilitating” an aggressively defensive, hissy cat is common sense. All of us, who love cats, automatically know how to do it. You just love him or her, treat him gently and provide a calm and quiet home plus some good food. Throw in some play and in time he’ll start to trust people and calm down. Nothing clever about it.

It doesn’t take that long. It concerns me that quite a lot of people might complain that their cat is aggressive and difficult and so on. The cause is probably because of something they are doing, which makes their cat anxious. Some of these cats get relinquished to shelters and are put to sleep. Very sad.

The straightforward, basic video, below is in two parts showing how relaxed a once defensive cat became with a bit of TLC. There is 4 months between the two parts. If this continues, this cat may well settle in. Marvin who visits Dorothy (dw) in California comes to mind.

In the first part of the video (which some people have seen before) this fine classic (blotched) tabby cat hisses even though he wants to be friendly. It is a mixed message. His defensive behavior is almost automatic. I think it’s precautionary behavior because he lives in an place that makes him anxious. Perhaps his owner is unaware. I don’t think his defensiveness is due to early learning experiences. If it was it would be much harder to unlearn.

I know the house he comes from. It is very large and I think there is quite a lot of human activity, including babies. The babies may, in fact, be the key factor. Baby cries seem to make cats anxious.

He now sleeps on one of the beds in my home and purrs (you’ll hear him in the second part of the video) and behaves as you’d expect a cat to behave when stroked. His actions – purring– reflect his feelings and emotions; nice.

The big question is should I look after another cat! Charlie, my black cat companion, was the big worry, However, he has got used to this cat’s company and there are no signs of emotional stress of upset from him now.

6 thoughts on “From Cat Hiss To Purr. From Defensive to Relaxed”

    • Thanks Marion. This tabby cat was so defensive. He would hiss loudly at everything all the time not matter how he felt. Rather than purr he would growl under his breath. As usual it is just about being friendly. Cats know when we are friendly. They really get the message quickly.

  1. What a difference in that lovely cat! He trusts you now.
    You say Charlie is OK about him being there so yes I think you should encourage him to stay with you.
    The biggest regret we had was when ex neighbours emigrated and their cat who used to almost live with us was to be rehomed with the woman’s family, we begged to keep him but they said no.
    How I wish we could turn the clock back and hide him away until they had gone because we eventually heard he had been run over near his new home.
    We had Ebony, Walter, Jozef and Popsy at that time, one more wouldn’t have made much difference.
    That’s him bottom left, such a lovely boy, I still shed tears about him.
    So Michael, I say keep that lovely tabby boy before it’s too late!

    • Oh…dear it is difficult. Your story is quite poignant (and sad) because this boy used to cross the road opposite the flat. Very dangerous so he could be killed any time. However, I think he doesn’t do it anymore because he can come here for food, rest and a bit of company. Charlie is OK with him.

  2. Michael – since you asked the question I think you must already have your answer. IT might be nice for Charlie to have someone around as company to have good days and bad days with. I’ve always believed cats are social but that doesn’t mean they ‘should’ always get along. A scrap can be more healthy than a ‘nothing’ – however Michael you are at home most the time so there’s no issue with Charlie being lonely anyway. It might put some extra spice in his life to have another cat around. Usually if they ignore eachother it means they get along just fine.

    Anyway – how does this happen? You take the tabby with you? Is this your new home which happens to be nearby? What are the logistics?

    • Lots of good questions. He stayed today, most of the day. He likes the loving feeling. LOL. He purrs and accepts being picked up etc. He is normal and he head butts all the time. We greet each other with a big head butt.

      Logistics? Don’t ask… complicated. I’ll tell you later. I hope it just sorts itself out. I would think the owner knows what is going on. She may even be reading this 😉

      I could adopt all the cats. I can’t say no to cats who need some TLC. It is a weakness I have.


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