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Thread: crazy cat?

  1. #1
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    Oct 2002
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    Unhappy crazy cat?

    I'm a little worried about my cat. She's a 20-year-old Siamese that I've had since sixth grade and she's gone a little psycho lately. She's started pulling her hair out above her right hip. She goes nuts and starts pulling on it like a crazy (cat)woman. I took her to the vet a few months ago for the full work up and everything checked out ok, the only thing the vet mentioned was that her kidneys were starting to feel small but that wouldn't be out of the ordinary for a cat her age. I'm nervous to take her in if it's bad news. Is she just senile or something not good?

  2. #2
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    I would suggest that you do take her back to the vet. Perhaps all she needs is a mild tranquilizer. You will just stress yourself out worrying if you do nothing.

  3. #3
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    I have a siamese mix cat who is about a year old. He did this for a little while when he was especially stressed. We had to get an antibiotic for it (mild infection), but he hasn't done it since. What I did find out though is that siamese are notorius for having OCD (obsessive compulsive disorder). He does all kinds of bizarre things. We allow him to do the things we can put up with and attempt to put a stop to the ones we can't. For a time, when we first found him, we thought he might have to be medicated, but once he got used to us and his new space he mellowed out a lot.

    Good luck with your old girl.

  4. #4
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    Our cat pulls her hair out as well by the tail - in some cases that is a sign of skin allergy. We have to take ours about 3 times a year to get a hydrocortizone shot. If she goes outside at all, she may have gotten bitten by a flea - even if you give those treatments, a single flea bite sometimes can cause a more widespread skin reaction.

    Also - I have read (since I researched this a bit when ours started doing it) that changes in environment can stress a cat and cause them to pull out their hair. Have you moved or introduced a new person/animal to your house recently?

    Since your cat is older, of course, there may be other medical concerns, but it seems as though most cat hair-pulling is either allergy or stress-related (or the OCD as Ralph mentioned but it would seem surprising if your cat just suddenly started having those traits at age 20).

  5. #5
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    Hee hee....I just have to butt in here - nothing to add about your cat (except that I'm sorry you're poor kitty's doing this to herself!), but Beth - that wasn't Ralph that posted about OCD above - it was Hannah_phi. You do EXACTLY what I do! Ralph has same avatar, so you assumed it was Ralph! I do this ALL the time!

  6. #6
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    Oops. . .sorry hannah_phi! I wasn't even looking at the names - just the avatar! I guess I spend too much time here if I "recognize" people soley by that. . .

  7. #7
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    The OCD sounds like a good guess, she does other bizarre things like walking around howling at the top her lungs for no reason. If you've ever heard a Siamese yell, it's this horrible guttural, torture sound. She really likes to get going between the hours of 2am and 5am. So pleasant!

    The stress or difference might be causing it is my DH has been traveling alot and hasn't been home as much in the past few months. They fell instantly in love when they met 10 years ago and my family jokes that he added 10 more years to her life. I will have to get him counseling when she kicks the bucket.

    Thanks for the replies, gave me ideas of what it might be. I think I might need to break down and take the old lady in to the vet just to be safe.

  8. #8
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    Originally posted by Grace
    Hee hee....I just have to butt in here - nothing to add about your cat (except that I'm sorry you're poor kitty's doing this to herself!), but Beth - that wasn't Ralph that posted about OCD above - it was Hannah_phi. You do EXACTLY what I do! Ralph has same avatar, so you assumed it was Ralph! I do this ALL the time!
    LOL I totally did the same thing too, at first. I was reading and I though, hmm, Ralph has a siamese cat, and then I noticed that it wasn't Ralph!

    My sister's cat was pulling its hair out/over-grooming for a while, and it turned out to be fleas. I too think that this sort of thing is really common as an allergy or flea reaction, and the vet can probably give you something to help. My cat doesn't do this, but she is getting older (10 now) and I've noticed that she's started picking up some new, weird habits, like biting. She's NEVER been a biter, but now she is, sometimes! At least she doesn't bite down hard--she just lets you feel her teeth. But it's surprisig, as she's never done this before!
    "In France, cooking is a serious art form and a national sport."
    --Julia Child

  9. #9
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    He he, it sounds strange, but I too have made the same silly mistake. LOL I'll look at something and think I haven't even read this thread, how could I have posted on it. Then I realize the name is different! I guess its time to work on finding a custom avatar.

    About your cat, the howling thing is one of Sinatra's behaviors. He also puts his tongue on the carpet and spins around. He's obsessed with a handmade "Cabbage Patch" type doll I have and sometimes I notice that he's been staring at something for over ten minutes, but there's nothing there. These things are behaviors that we consider borderline. They only surface once in a while, but if they were to get worse we might consider getting him on kitty Buspar. He was a rescue kitty, so we don't know his background. We have broken him of several behaviors already, including spraying (the neuter took care of that) and eating houseplants.

    It does sound like the change in her behavior may be related to the frequent absence of your DH. I would definitely see the vet about it though. The pulling hair out thing may have begun as a behavior, but now there may be a small infection that makes it itch. She might stop if you can stop the itching. Good luck and let us know what the vet says.

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