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14wk male F2B aggressive adaptation to new home


Breeding Savannahs for the Home
I know that you don't want to hear this, but I have cats here that I bred, so I know how they were handled, and they don't want anything to do with me. I know that most pet owners want to be able to pet and love on their cats, but some cats don't ever come around. Also, sorry to hear about the papers. Your breeder really needs to get them to you.


Savannah Super Cat
I think someone suggested it before, but have you tried the Feliway plugins? If you plug them in in places all over the house, maybe it'll get him to relax a bit?

I know you said that getting him to the vet is very traumatic for him, but I wonder if you would consider taking him and seeing if there are any medicines that could get him to calm down? For the most part, I don't like the idea of drugging pets, but if he's got some faulty wiring... At the end of the day it could just be his personality, but you were able to play with him and pet him at the breeders...

Maybe you want to wait and see if he mellows out as he gets a bit older, but my concern at this point would be helping him if he injures himself or gets caught on something in the house- it's why I can't put some of my ferals into my furnished basement: they're ok for petting, but if anything went wrong, I probably wouldn't be able to help them.

It really seems strange that he's still so averse to being pet- I've had young and adult ferals come around in less time. Of course, on other forums, people have said it took over a year to get their shelter cat/rehomed kitty/feral rescue to trust them, so maybe he just needs even more time than most.

>_< Are there any other cat behaviorists besides Jackson Galaxy?

Laura W

Savannah Super Cat
Some cats just take a bit longer to become comfortable No one but me can pet Echo and it's been almost a year. He has days he begs me to pet him and others I can't get near him, days he takes his food gently from me and other days he nips (then he is told no and easy and has to wait about 15 seconds for more). He will put his front paws on the bed if I'm in bed and he wants my attention, or looking for the Dolos, the Bengal, and sometimes jump up and sit and just stare at me, moment I move, he's gone. There is no picking him up, that's the next thing I will work on. Still hides if anyone is here but us. I don't know if anyone will ever be able to touch him but me. I know he wasn't this way when he left his breeder. I saw pictures of him in a walking jacket.

Just continue to let him wonder around and talk to him, offering food. I wouldn't give up on him just yet.

Brigitte Cowell

Staff member
I think it is very very disappointing that you have a kitten that no matter how patient you've been, very little progress has been made. I am so sorry. You've obviously tried to do everything correctly.

The only thing I might suggest is consulting a feline behavioral therapist, someone like . Marilyn is in CA but she does phone consultations that go into a lot of detail and come up with a plan of action that is personalized for your situation. I really feel that a professional needs to be looking into the situation and hopefully be able to help you understand your kitty and his reactions.
Well Folks,

It's been almost 5 months since I posted an update on Diego. I'd like to say that it is because I am lazy, but unfortunately it is due to a very minimal measure of progress.

We are currently splitting time between Diego and "The Girls" as to who has free access to the entire house. We let the girls run for a while, then put them in their room and let Diego out of his. Diego enjoys being out and spends most of his time near my wife and I. He is usually around, but still will not let us get too close. We still cannot pet him or touch him in any way. Typically if we try to pat him, he will run off, but if he is sitting somewhere and we get too close, he'll hiss at us and stand up... completely on guard.

We did neuter him, which had zero change in his behavior. We also tried an anti-anxiety medicine (Buspar) for a period of time and that had no change either.

We're being patient with him, but would have hoped to see more results by now. He is now 10 months old.

The other problem we are having is that since we cannot handle him, we cannot cut his claws. His sharp claws and growing size along with his affinity for running across the back of our leather couch are leaving marks all over it. We tried a dose of acepromazine hoping to tranquilize him, but this had no effect on him other than to diminish his appetite.

The vet wants us to bring him in so that they can gas him and cut his claws, but that is such a tramatic event in his life. We're trying to get him to relax and trust us. I'm afraid that will only reset the clock on all of our efforts.

These are trying times at our place. Now to add insult to injury, we have not heard back from his breeder about his registration papers. The last we heard from her, she said it was due to financial difficulty. We're beginning to question her legitimacy and practices. Her cattery and contract were on the up and up. I met the mother and father along with siblings both litter mates and adult.

As always, I appreciate any insight and suggestions that any may have with these experiences.
Some cats are just shy. They never really come out of it. This is not necessarily the fault of the breeder, it just happens. Just like with kids, you may have an outgoing one and a shy one. I have two F2 males, Uno and Vinnie. Both were born at my house, both were raised the same way. Uno is how you describe Diego, he hates to be petted and touched. Only now at age 5 is he pretty friendly and even comes up to strangers. His younger brother Vinnie is the opposite - I flew him all over the USA to Exhibit when the Savannah breed was still new ,as an example of the kind and friendly nature of even an early generation Savannah. He is a lap cat, anyone can pick him up. What went differently with Uno? I just do not know. He had an injury to his leg as a young kitten, but that is the only thing I can think of. I think Uno is just reticent by nature.

Regarding his claws. Perhaps you could try having the vet put off Soft Claws? Yes, you would have to have him anesthetized but I think it might last long than a claw trim. The other option is having a throw or blanket that you place on your sofa. Maybe putting Sticky Paws on it to deter him from walking there? Also remember to have lots of scratch posts, cardboard, sisal, carpet, whatever he may like to scratch on and encourage him to file his own claws via scratching.

Regarding his papers. Its 10 dollars to register a kitten (obtain a "blue slip" to allow the owner to register the kitten) so poverty is a lame excuse IMHO. Does your contract specify a time in which papers must be given? If so, then I would remind the breeder of the same and if they still fail to give them to you, sue them in small claims court.