Unprovoked Domestic Cat Attack
I argue that there is no such thing as an unprovoked attack by a domestic cat. The problem is that we don’t see a reason. That does not mean there is no reason. A recent news story prompted me to write this. A man, Mr Baxter, is suing a woman, who could be his wife, we aren’t sure, for $100k because her cat “without provocation, viciously attacked, bit and clawed” Mr Baxter, while he was attempting to feed the cat.
The incident allegedly happened in 2011 and he sued in March 2013. Odd that. Perhaps he was waiting for the injuries to settle down as Mr Baxter’s claim for compensation says he continues to suffer from the attack. I guess he would say that.
The claim is implausible. It seems to be a attack by Mr Baxter on his wife (if she is his wife!) rather than an attack by a cat on him.
“Unprovoked” means without prompting or motivation. A domestic cat might aggressively attack another domestic animal in the household, out of the blue, for no apparent reason but it may well be the case that something happened between the two animals beforehand that the owner had not seen.
|Anxiety - reduce it|
|FULL Maine Coon guide - lots of pages|
|Children and cats - important|
There may well be a history of animosity between two domestic animals in a household that provokes one to attack the other. One cat might be dominant over the other and bully the submissive cat. Aggression and attacks under these circumstances are all predicable and motivated by good reason. Therefore they are not unprovoked. The real underlying problem is putting two cats or a cat and a dog together who don’t get along. That is the owner’s fault, as I see it.
Another possible reason why a cat might demonstrate apparent unprovoked aggression is when aggression is transferred from one animal to another. A cat might have gone outside and had a standoff or a fight with another cat. He immediately comes in and is still aggressive and the aggression spills over towards the cat’s owner. Once again this is not “unprovoked”. The aggression has been provoked by a territorial dispute with another cat. It is up to people to recognise that and steer clear until he cools down.
Unsocialised Cats (and People!)
Some domestic cats might be inherently aggressive because they are unsocialised. They have not been raised properly by playing with other cats, dogs and people when young kittens. If this has happened in a domestic environment it is once again due to a failure by the cat’s owner. Or the cat might be a former feral cat. Although most feral cats can be socialised with patience. If a cat attacks because he is unsocialised he has a reason to attack – he has been trained to behave like a wild cat and is defensive. These attacks are not unprovoked. They are programmed, really.
In terms of fundamental drives and emotions the domestic cat is very similar to the African/Asian wildcat ancestor. We don’t believe that wild cats make unprovoked attacks. There will always be an underlying reason if we can’t see it or understand it.
It is almost unimaginable that a domestic cat will attack a human in an unprovoked manner for the simple reason a human is too big. It is not good for survival for a domestic cat weighing 10 pounds to attack a man weighing 20 times that. It will always be something the person is doing, and/or has done for a while, possibly combined with a cat who has become very defensive for a variety of reasons.
People can mishandle cats. They can make cats fearful or make them feel insecure and defensively aggressive. People who mishandle cats don’t realise what they are doing. Accordingly, they might think their cat has demonstrated unprovoked aggression or attacks. They would be wrong.
Overzealous play by a person with their cat can lead to getting scratched or bitten. This is not an unprovoked attack! It is play. Someone could claim it was an act of aggression and they would be wrong.
A cat in pain, which may not be apparent to a person, may strike out if handled. An ill cat may also be depressed and irritable. These would be underlying reasons why a cat might demonstrate what looks like unprovoked aggression. Once again the aggression would have a reason.
Always look carefully for an underlying reason behind cat aggression and attacks. There will be a reason there somewhere and the reason can always be traced back to people.
- Hand on left by Andrew Currie
- Open hand by greggoconnell
- Arm bottom right: unknown sorry. Please tell me who you are.
I didn’t read all of the responses but just want to add one for the heck of it 🙂 My calico, Punkin, attacks my husband quite often and the reason is she wants him to follow her and sit with her while she eats, she is a social eater, if my husband does not get up and follow her she lashes out at his ankles and yes, draws blood. Call unprovoked or provoked if you like, to me it’s that she’s a very demanding calico as most are and even though it hurts at first it’s no reason in my own opinion to consider her aggressive just very spoiled and demanding 🙂
Thanks for this Vickie. It looks like she is insisting on his attention. But would it be fair to say that she has tried other ways to get his attention without success and relies on the last resort of an attack on his ankles which she has got into the habit of doing because she sees that it works.
My two year old tuxedo cat attacked me this morning while I was sleeping…. SLEEPING, how is that not unprovoked? I’ve had him since he was 4 weeks old, he’s never been abused/mistreated or played with rough. He and I have always had a loving relationship, he cuddles me to sleep every night. Someone please tell me how I provoked him while I was sleeping? This was completely out of the blue and now I’m bleeding from my EYE!!! This cat has never attacked me before, not even once
Skyler, thanks for commenting. Are you sure that you were attacked? My distinct impression is that you were not attacked. Your cat wanted your attention. He poked and prodded you as you slept to try and animate you – to bring you to life from his standpoint. Cats are active at night and in the early hours (dawn) because that is when prey is available. He wanted you to be active with him. Feel blessed. This is not an attack. He has drawn blood because he is treating you as a cat and cats would not bleed under these conditions.
I HAVE LIVED WITH MY DAUGHTER LONG ENOUGH TO WATCH AS THIS CAT HAS ATTACKED HER – AND HER FRIENDS,,, IT REALLY DOESNT MATTER WHY THE CAT DOES IT, – IT DOES, SO IT NEEDS TO BE REMOVED SO AS TO NOT ATTACK OTHER INDIVIUDALS,, ALL SHE NEEDS IS FOR A CHILD TO BE ATTACKED AND THEN SHE COULD BE IN BIG TROUBLE,, THE CAT WOULD BE REMOVED FROM HER DWELLING BY THE AUTHORITIES,, ITS YOU THAT IS WRONG, AND ITS DANGEROUS THAT YOU SAY THIS CAT SHOULD NOT BE PUT DOWN,,,,
AND YES I DO KNOW THE CIRCUMSTANCES,, THIS CAT DOES NOT LIKE PEOPLE PERIOD……………. THERE ARE CATS THAT SHOULD NOT BE LIVING IN PEOPLES HOMES,, PEOPLE COME BEFORE AN IDIOT CAT –…..
Barbara Ross rant after rant against cats, you have a big problem thinking crazy people and morons stick up for them. You say ‘idiot cat’ without even trying to think what causes cats to attack, aggression breeds aggression, cats do NOT attack for no reason.
You must have wasted a lot of your time going through all these comments to rant on some, don’t you know this is a web site where people who love and understand cats come?
exactly was actually very disheartening reading all those comments which is why i didnt feel like commenting…I dont see how a cat could do that unless that cat was being hurt or feeling frightened in some way ive never seen a cat ever hurt a human in that way. That cat certainly doesnt deserve the bad attention it is getting i just hope that someone somewhere can rescue that animal and that maybe some awareness is available. very sad 🙁
Yes it’s very sad Kylee that some people are so inadequate they blame an innocent animal who has been abused, instead of finding out how to help him/her
yea thats how i feel. 🙁 I dont believe what she is saying about the cat. Obviously Something is seriously wrong!!!
Barbara, it does matter why the cat does it. Perhaps if the cat is moved to a different place with different people he/she will stop attacking people because the problem is the people. It is the people who should be removed not the cat.
Well said Michael, there are some people who should never be allowed within a mile of a cat!
Exactly michael its the humans who are supposed to be looking after the cat in my opinion and im sure others agree.
Just in case you check in here, I can assure you that you are in the wrong place.
You need to google, “Cat Haters Anonymous” and you will get the support you are seeking there. The chairperson is, likely, someone named Woody.
To all of us, I agree that we don’t have a full picture from BR as to what is really going on.
But, I’ll bet that we would all say that there is an incredible amount of turmoil going on in that household. My guess would be that this poor cat is scared to death and takes refuge in that laundry room. Her intrusion scared him very badly.
SOMEBODY needs to be rehomed. I think it should be Barbara.
exactly!!!! good post Dee Its never the cats fault
Im sorry but this cat should be destroyed,, he has attacked his owner and several other people who have come to the door, this is not a PET — he could seriously injure a child, I don’t care why he did it, it was unprovoked, and terrifying,,, he should be put down PERIOD
Sorry Barbara, but you have no idea what happened in any detail. You don’t know whether the cat was provoked or not. You don’t know the environment under which the cat lived. Have you seen statements? Have you seen evidence? Do you know the full details? I suspect the answer to those questions is no. To say that a cat should be killed without knowing the facts is irresponsible in my opinion.
You may read some more about the story somewhere else but no doubt it was an online newspaper and you know very well that you can never trust an online newspaper to get the facts accurate and complete.
I’ve worked with cats for many years and I’m trying to figure this out.
Could you write some details?
I want to know:
What is the cat’s name?
Is he neutered?
Do you know the cat’s caretakers well and know what kind of care they are giving? Is he vaccinated? How often does he see a vet?
If the cat isn’t yours, why would he be in your laundry room?
If you are in the U.S., why is this cat with a bite history allowed to be free-roaming?
Is there documentation to support that this cat attacks unprovoked?
Thanks. This info would be helpful.
look dee — I live in my daughters home, I have my own apt,, but the laundry room and kitchen I have to share.. – i was in the laundry room putting laundry in the washer and i felt teeth and claws ripping the back part of my legs,, i was cornered in a small room,, he then attacked my front legs,, it was a terrifying thing,, this cat is like a feral cat , and my daughter has been clawed and bitten as well, as any stranger that has come in,, i do not want my grandchildren to be attacked,, so my son will not allow them in this house until it is gone,, anybody who feels that they might be on the cats side must be mental, like this other guy on here who did just that, the name of the cat makes no difference, and yes he sees the vet on a regular basis.. he has been like this for a long time, there is another cat that lives here that was brought in after him,, and she is a doll, its him, he is evil,, he looks evil,, and if he could kill people he would, he does not belong in a home.. I have lived here for 3 years now,, with a golden retriever – the first 1- 1/2 years i lived upstairs – he did nothing to me,, this is recent,, as he had his teeth cleaned,, and for some reason did not know who it was in the laundry room, and he attacked me from behind.. i was cornered with a cat out of control, and I was barefoot, or i would of kicked him to the ceiling that is for sure, he needs to be put down, he is not a pet,, he is the devil,, you would have to experience what i did in order to know that i am correct,,,,
he still lives in my daughters home because he is her pet, and nobody has reported it,, i almost did,, and should have,, she put her cat before her own mother, i had blood dripping from every part of my legs.. he is a menace, and should be put down,, with all the other wonderful cats out there, something like this a wild idiot of an animal that only stalks and attacks is not a pet, but my daughter refuses to take him in,, i would in a moment………
You are not telling me the whole story. I don’t know the entire circumstances surrounding the situation under which this cat bit you. Only once I know the exact circumstances in their entirety will I be able to then see the reason behind this so-called cat attack. But I will have to repeat until then that cat do not attack wantonly and without good reason a person. If a cat does not like people in general (which is extremely rare I would say) he or she will simply avoid people. If a cat is fearful of people (more likely) and is trapped and the only way to escape is to attack then that may be a reason. But once again there is a reason. Cats do not wantonly, without good cause, attack humans because it doesn’t make sense. It doesn’t make sense because it is likely to end up with the cat being hurt or killed and the cat knows that.
oh my God — get off of here you moron,,, what a stupid online blog area —
lol get off his OWN web site for CAT lovers?
Why are YOU here as you obviously hate cats and know NOTHING about them?
I got a good laugh out of it too, Ruth AKA.
Well, Barnara Ross.
Michael won’t be getting off of here because it is his site.
But, he can make your “moron” comments disappear.
“This cat is like a feral cat”…
Well, let me tell you…
I deal with ferals every day and have for most of my life, and have never been attacked.
Yes, I have bore some scratches and bites that were a result of my own foolish behavior.
There’s no doubt in my mind that, if I began spraying with a water bottle, that I would have an attack on my hands. I would have to be out of my mind to do that.
As everyone is telling you, no cat attackes without provocation.
I was attacked by a 6 year old red tabby cat from behind, he cornered me in a laundry room, and came from out of no where, he jumped as high as he could leaving scratch and bite marks on my butt, and then scratched all the way down my legs,, then when I tried to shut the door,he leaped up and began scratching and biting my front,,it was a very frightful experience,, and totally unprovoked, this same cat has bit others who have come in the house and also his owner…. I am the mother and did not press charges
I am sorry to hear about the attack, Barbara. The cat was almost certainly terrified for some reason, perhaps he was provoked beforehand or hiding from something, it could be anything but something in the human world terrified this cat and as a result he was in a defensive mode and so attacked the 1st person he saw. It may have been transferred aggression meaning he was aggressive towards something else and then you walked in. Whatever the reason it is not an unprovoked attack. There is always a good reason why a domestic cat will attack defensively, which is what this is. Thank you for sharing but please don’t misjudge the domestic cat. Please don’t judge the domestic cat as if it is some sort of wild cat attacking prey. It is never that in respect of our relationship with the domestic cat.
Thanks, very informative, I’ll let her know.
BTW – I did read about some of the people’s complaints over aggression here. One reason I am curious is that I feel like I really lucked out with my own cat. Sure, she’s had a number of illnesses and run up the vet bill quite a lot including during the very first year, and was skittish and fearful as a kitten, she’s not so far exhibited any behavior issues. I really think she is unusual: her fear response isn’t to attack but to cower and freeze, she freezes when picked up by strangers or at the vet, and as a kitten she’d run up to me with the intention to play-attack then freeze for a second about a foot away and run in the opposite direction. But she is 14 (at the end of this month I think) with multiple health issues, I realize that at some point in time – which I hope isn’t going to arrive for a while – I’ll lose her. As devastating as it’ll be I don’t think I’ll survive without a cat for long, and I guess an idea of having a cat that’ll bite scares me. So after hearing my cousin’s stories I googled a little and read some scary stories.
if you go to your nearest animal shelter and adopt a kitten and care for him or her properly,there won’t be any unprovoked cat attacks.
I think in Mr Baxter case it’s either a nasty divorce or an insurance scam. In the latter case they could be both in on it. He sues her, her liability insurance pays, they split the money. I can’t believe the insurance would agree to pay because I see no damage – bit finger, some long healed scratches and no mention of serious infection (which can happen in bites, but there is no mention of it here).
Having said that, I think there are rare cases of really crazy kitties.
Take my cousin’s cat for example. Most of the time he is a nice sweet lap cat. Then sometimes, she’d be sitting on a sofa not even looking at the cat or petting the cat, and he’d come up to her and sinks his teeth in. I am talking serious bites, not love bites or scratches (he has claws, he just prefers teeth in these cases). She has scars. It could be redirected aggression but in an indoor-only cat living in a 2nd floor apartment and with repeated attacks, it just seems strange. She thinks he wants her place on the sofa as it’s always when she is sitting and ignoring him. She is single, so this isn’t the case of someone else annoying the cat.
She is no stranger to cats – her previous cat, the one her parents brought with them from Russia and which she took in when her parents went to senior housing that didn’t allow pets was a spitfire that couldn’t tolerate petting – I’ve never left unscratched when I visited, but it was my fault as I should’ve known better than to try to pet her, she was so gorgeous. But my cousin gave Katia her space, and as the Katia grew older she mellowed out. But with this cat, it’s different. She really it in her wits end. I haven’t talked to her for a while, so I am not sure if she managed to figure out how to stop it.
My own cat is a sweetheart – you needed to be seriously asking for it to get scratched when she was young, and now that she is old, I don’t remember the last time I had a scratch. I give her 3 pills in the evening, 3 pills in the morning for her multiple health conditions, and my skin is intact.
But I really wish I knew what causes my cousin’s cat’s aggression.
Thanks for visiting and commenting.
How hard are these bites.? They probably feel quite hard but how a cat bite feels depends on the recipient. Some people are very bite averse and frightened others don’t care and are tolerant.
If they are really hard, the cat has not learned how hard to bite in play or your cousin has played too hard with her cat using her feet or hands. But they are play bites (the cat is trying to instigate a play, some rough and tumble) in my opinion and this cat is not crazy. He is more likely to be bored living in an apartment and has some pent up energy to release. The solution might be for your cousin to buy some cat teases and play with her cat with the teases or other cat toys. Homemade ones are just as good.
“How hard are these bites”
They are hard enough that she showed scars left even after the bites are healed. He always pierces skin and makes her bleed and go on a course of antibiotics. Her arm was scarred when I saw her last, pretty deep scars, yet they looked healed. It’s just strange to me that play bites could be so deep. I was surprised because my own cat never pierced my skin – though with my cat I tried to give the message right from the start that bites aren’t OK.
I really don’t know if she’s played with her hands – our parents had a falling out and so I’ve never had a chance to visit when he was a kitten, even now, we normally meet either at my place or her parents’ place, so I’ve not even seen the cat except in a window. He isn’t a kitten now, maybe 5 or older and I don’t remember hearing about this problem until maybe a year ago. It’s possible that she inadvertently encouraged it when he was a kitten. I am going to call later this month to see what is happening. You probably are right about his being bored stuck in a one bedroom co-op and with her working during the day. I’ll tell her to play more with the cat, maybe first thing she gets home from work, and to make sure he has toys. It’s a good idea.
Thanks for the response. Sometimes what can happen is the cat play bites and the person struggles – moves their hand and tries to force the cat from their hand. This results in the cat biting harder and play biting develops into a fight. There is a fine line between play (which is play-hunting for a cat) and actually hunting (biting the hand as if it is prey).
If her cat play bites, it is best to keep the hand quiet and then distract the cat with a quiet voice and a cat tease that is close by. She should keep a tease to hand. The cat should then release her bite.
Monty could be pretty aggressive during play when he was young. He probably was taken too young from his mother and siblings, but there really was no help for that, since he was feral and lucky enough to be caught by me and saved from a life on the mean streets. He bit my face once, just latched on. I just put him alone in his room for awhile after that. When he would bite too hard I would just say, “No one wants to play with bitey cat” and eventually he got better about it. He bit my sister on the chin once, just latched on and wouldn’t let go with his little teeth. He also bit her once when he had a bee sting on his paw and she reached down to keep him from getting into her apartment and accidentally caused him to step onto his sore paw. He made a noise of pain and bit her hand, but he let go right away and he didn’t break the skin. He broke skin when he bit me in the face and when he had bitten my sister on the chin. You just didn’t feel too comfortable holding him in your arms when he was a kitten because sometimes he’d just jump up and bite your face. The approach of “Nobody wants to play with bitey cat” really did work over time. I also tried saying “ouch” loudly, but I don’t know that I was able to communicate to him that he had hurt me. I think he pretty much acts in his own best interest. When he played gently he got more playtime and affection and maybe a treat or some outside time. When he bit me in the face I ignored him after that. He figured it out. He’s a really good cat now. Even if he hisses or growls he hasn’t bit or scratched anyone in a long time. The only person he has ever scratched is me and that was when he was going after a feral cat who had come into our yard and I was trying to grab him to bring him in. I was afraid Monty would suddenly realize he can get over that fence. If he jumped over and ran I wasn’t sure I could get him back. Looking back on it, I don’t think he would have went over the fence and I shouldn’t have gotten between him and his “prey.” He was fine with the other cat being there until I came out, startled the other cat causing him to run, and then Monty gave chase. I learned not to come between Monty and prey. If he’s after a rabbit or something now I might place my body between him and his target, but I won’t reach down with my hands to grab Monty if he’s chasing something. Usually, I try to anticipate and scare away the prey animal before Monty has a chance to go after it. He must think I’m the worst hunter ever. He gets this exasperated look on his face when I’m scaring his prey away.
I would agree most of the time what appears to be unprovoked aggression is really the human’s fault, either due to being unobservant of signals of the cat’s mood , and they don’t see that it is time to leave the cat alone if it is overstimulated or just wants to go do something else… or else failing to provide enough activity and stimulation.
but as you point out, sometimes it is not provoked BY the human but is redirected aggression due to an encounter with another animal — and to some cats it can even be from seeing another cat through the window.
But there is a category where it really IS pretty close to unprovoked. and that’s play aggression.
I am not just talking about a person is playing roughly with the cat. (though sometimes it is another human who has been doing that and basically has taught a kitten that it’s a fun game to scratch and bite humans, and that the humans think it’s fun too — which becomes less fun when the kitten grows up to an adult and then does the same to other people who don’t like it. Then it is usually the cat that gets blamed for being “vicious” and “aggressive”. )
But sometimes even without having been encouraged, a kitten or cat will for example dart out and grab someone’s foot or leg and sink in claws and teeth. That doesn’t necessarily mean the human has been kicking the cat! Very often in a young cat, it’s just a lot of energy and not enough outlet . Cat play is imitating predation, so pouncing from ambush is a common play activity among cats and especially kittens.
Getting a pair of kittens can help, since they work off a lot of energy playing together.
Also if possible, one should avoid taking a kitten too young from mother and littermates, since they do learn from their cat family about bite inhibition and how to not fully extend claws during play.
Also providing the cat with more stimulating environment, giving it access to the garden if possible, and having regular play sessions with wand toys where the cat can play using their natural behaviors of stalking and chasing and pouncing, but without using human bodies as toys.
One other thing that can seem unprovoked is if the cat has previously been abused and is afraid to trust another human, That sort of fits under lack of socialization but it’s more specific, it’s like negative socialization. and the cat has become hypervigilant and will react to perceived threats, and maybe not in a predictable way since a lot depends what is going on in the cat’s mind.
Lovely comment. Thank you very much.
I agree but it is not quite unprovoked. Cat play is hunting, right? So a cat that is indoors and who wants to hunt, and can’t, finds an alternative. Is it “unprovoked”? (definition: “occurring without motivation or provocation”). Well the motivation is to hunt. So there is motivation and so it is not an unprovoked attack. It is provoked by a domestic cat’s natural drives and emotions, which we as cat guardians need to satisfy. If we fail in that regard we have to accept being attacked by our cat in play.
The point you make:
…is the answer. My post is saying that we, as cat guardians, cannot plead “unprovoked attack”. It all comes back to us ultimately.
You have really got to the fine point of it with this comment. There should be no confusion. Good idea to put the meaning of the word unprovoked in.
Good point Michael, I said it was “pretty close to unprovoked”, but maybe I should have said it can SEEM unprovoked, since the rest of what I wrote about play aggression is that it still very often goes back to a failure by the human.
We think the same way. I can see that 😉 Thanks for your informative comments.
I agree with Michael that humans provoke the attack in many cases. They just don’t pay attention to signals from the animal when clearly the cat is saying, “Back off.” I had friends over a couple weeks ago and one of them just kept approaching Monty trying to pet him even though Monty was growling and hissing. Had she ignored him Monty probably would have just sat in the living room with us. He was upset because of the unwanted attention and ran out of the room after I finally had to tell my friend to please let Monty be because he’s semi-feral and might hurt her. He didn’t attack her but if he had it would have been her fault for ignoring clear body language from Monty. When a cat puffs up his fur, growls at you and then hisses at your approach you don’t keep holding out your hand toward him so he can sniff it. She did have her fingers curled and was reaching in low, below where Monty was sitting in the window, obviously thinking if he had a chance to sniff her he’d calm down. She has a dog. Monty will not accept any person who smells of dog. I was kind of ticked off that my friend upset Monty. People want animals to accept them. They feel hurt and get offended if a cat or dog doesn’t seem to like them. So like my friend, they keep trying when they should just back off.
Absolutely. Cat owners need to be aware of the signs that indicate the mental state of their cat. I am sure many cat owners dive in and do as they want without regard for the cat’s emotional state. They then get scratched and that is not good for the relationship. Quite a few cats are relinquished because of what people describe as “aggression” or “bad cat behavior” when truthfully the problem originates with the person.
you are one crazy person giving advise on here,,
Crazy? Moron? lol you poor deluded soul
cat people are so weird, love live the dog, you idiot
lol love live the dog? I suppose you mean long live? The barking, biting, crapping dog, you are welcome to that inferior creature to a cat lol lol so who is the idiot????? lol lol
its kind of hard to notice an animal, when they are not there, and then they are on your back from behind MORON
not many words in your vocabulary…moron, idiot, crazy, don’t you know any more?
I have 2 big healing scratches on my hands like in the picture because me and Lilly are in the habit of playing fairly rough. I know it’s not good ‘training’ – I always joke that Lilly is dangerous and has no manners but we have so much fun playing I accept the risks and know I am putting myself in front of her claws. I never taught her boundaries in that way. I am ok with it. I pay the price sometimes. I agree – ‘unprovoked’ is utter nonsense. It’s easy to sound like a biased cat lover but I am being totally honest. A cat is tiny and will not run at you unless severely cornered and frightened and even then you’d have to be a total doorknob to get scratched and believe it was ‘unprovoked’. I feel sorry for a cat who has ended up scratching a human. Poor thing must have been unhappy or scared. If it were rough play like with me and Lilly then the human wouldn’t be saying ‘unprovoked’.
The ironic thing is that only humans are capable of doing things unprovoked. It’s a human concept. Animals act on instinct. Even a cat who was starving to death wouldnt attack a human for food – provoked by hunger. I honestly believe it’s kind of impossible. So called ‘unprovoked’ attacks in the animal kingdom are rare and there is always a reason. When will humans bloody well realise that anger, provocation, cruelty, destruction, jealousy are all human inventions. Yet humans always talk about animals and use such terms.
Marc I love your honesty and your passionate defence and understanding of cats.
Yes humans talk about animals in such terms and it makes me mad if someone says someone behaved like an animal when the worst animal of all is the human!
Ruth,you could’nt have worded your reply any better.Yes us humans forget that we are animals too.you made a very good point.
Good point Ruth – people use the term ‘animal’ with derogatory meaning when the human who is using it is what we are all embarassed and ashamed of. Humans defintely are the worst animal. I agree.
Ruth – you are in denial — feral cats that really should live outside and have been brought inside are asking for big problems,, it is not worth getting bitten or scratched by these animals, you can get infections and a hoard of other problems,, this cat that attacked me, there is something wrong with his brain,, and can not be trusted,, he should not be around children especially,, everyone that comes in this house is afraid of it,, it stalks people,, I walk around with a spray bottle, that eems to be the only thing that stops him from being very dominant,, it should be removed from this house before he does serious damage, i had nightmares for weeks after the attack………………………… and NO i did nothing to provoke it…..
Well that says it all Barbara Ross, you call the cat ‘it’ which shows that you think cats are possessions. They are living feeling beings of which you should never ever have any in your life because they deserve better.
Barbara’s right: you are a moron: a person who is notably foolish or lacking in good judgment. Dimwitted, stupid, halwitted, simple…whatever synonym you would like to use. And here’s why:
1) You contradicted yourself in your own blog post stating that another animal may be responsible for the pet’s aggression (territorial aggression, animal fights, etc) before you conclude with: “There will be a reason there somewhere and the reason can always be traced back to people,” which blatantly states that aggressive provocation is human-related.
You might have meant that a person’s resulting wounds from an attack could be indirectly their fault because they weren’t aware ahead of time of the animal’s aggressive mood, but that’s not what this states. Which leads to my next point.
2) Regardless of whether or not the animal was indirectly provoked by the person or an external source, it is impossible for pet owners (and their visitors) to monitor the animal every moment of every day; especially if they work, aren’t home, or the animal was outside of their field of vision, socializing (or fighting) with other animals.
Furthermore, cats are notorious for sending mixed body language. Even experienced cat owners are occasionally caught off guard by attacks (as they readily admit), because the cat doesn’t always show signs of impatience, annoyance, or anger prior to an attack. They may be very affectionate as they ask their owner for food and then attack micro-seconds after the food is served, without even taking their first bite and without any prior record of territorial aggression over their food or eating space.
Barbara made a simple declarative opinion that it’s not safe to keep an aggressive animal in the home regardless of the source of provocation.
Michael then ignorantly accuses her of advocating euthanasia, which was entirely off topic and probably an erroneous presumption on his part (another moron in the group. Surprise. Surprise).
3) Thirdly and finally, the fact that she called the cat “it” doesn’t signify anything other than her grammatical execution of objective & nomitive pronouns. Your comment, however, illustrates your combative reception, and perhaps a deficiency in your reading comprehension.
Barbara, for instance, also called the cat: “him,” “these animals,” “this cat,” and “he,” indicating personal and objective indentification of this individual animal.
To suggest that her omission of affectionate pronouns is somehow indicative of her lack of emotional attachment and, by extension, the cat’s aggressive nature, is outright ridiculous, bigoted, and irrelevant. You sound like someone looking to preserve your ego by attacking/discrediting others who insult or contradict you.
Perhaps you should disable your comments section or otherwise avoid social commentary (blogging) altogether if you’re so adverse to contradictory opinions–because it will come regardless of your intentions. How you handle it is what matters…provoked or otherwise.
I have published your comment even though it is very arrogant and insulting of me. Don’t do that again. Don’t you think it is you who is the moron in insulting the site’s owner in a comment?!
For instance you state:
No, you misunderstood. I am saying that if you go back far enough you’ll find a human cause. I am not saying what you have presumed. I am not being contradictory. I am saying that the environment created by the human leads to territorial aggression. I am surprised that someone as arrogantly overconfident as you failed to understand that obvious statement.
You are wrong. Cats send subtle but clear body language signals it is just a case of reading them. Obviously you are confused by cat body language.
You’re writing absolute claptrap and you are probably Woody the notorious troll.
Don’t comment anymore. It won’t be published.
I don’t believe any cat attacks without being provoked or terrified or hurt and naturally he then retaliates.
Usually if a cat does attack, say like some people say ‘Out of the blue my cat runs and grabs or bites my foot’ well someone’s foot must have done something to the cat so many times that he is defensive of feet going by him.
As you say Michael there is always a reason for it.
Exactly Ruth, the rare and unusual situation where the provocation is not obvious and the act seems ‘random’ just means one has to dig a bit to find the reason because there is one. Instinctive behaviour of an animal is reactive. It cannot act without reason or reaction. Sometimes past experience is the key and I think that’s a really good example of a more unobvious or unusual situation.
of course you are wrong, that statement sounds like you are a moron,,,,, of course there are animals that attack for no reason, and even if there is a reason that is in their heads, you can not have an animal in your house that will do that to you and your family,,,
Barbara Ross was there any need to call someone you don’t know a moron? Obviously you know nothing about cats, they do NOT repeat NOT, attack for no reason!
That’s all I’m saying except that maybe you should look in the mirror and you will see just who IS the moron
you should be the president of Cat nation MORON
And you should be the president of Morons! lol
See when you are provoked you attack, you wouldn’t attack for no reason would you? Or maybe you would, huh, but one thing for sure a cat wouldn’t attack unless some ‘moron’ of his past or present provoked him to.
Wrong. If you attacked someone you’d have a good reason. It is no different for any animal. Why should it be?
Sorry Barbara. We know all there is to know about cat behavior. Believe me. You are not going to win this argument and your argument is crude and to be honest rather nasty.
Therefore move the cat from the family to another better family or if he is unsocialized let him live in the wild or socialize him. But don’t kill the cat which is what you are advocating.