Arizona was lucky enough to be adopted to a wonderful home, his new owner decided to keep a diary in order to encourage other people to adopt a nervous cat. She has kindly let us put his story on our webpage.
Travelled home in the carrier without making a peep, body language seemed relaxed, let me keep a finger on a claw that was hooked through the mesh. Comfortably installed in spare room set up with cat amenities and left to exit carrier in his own time. Visitied him periodically for brief moments: has squished himself under the bed and blinked at me.Overnight: Eaten food, used tray (Yay!), being climbing and found a teddy bear, looked out of window and miaowed a little.
Hiding in corner under bed (less enclosed than before). Let me touch him without freaking out. Has discovered warm pipes under floor. Moved slightly further out of corner, has accepted treats while in there, little swipes to let me know he's not won over yet, then took another treat.I sat and crocheted in his room, talking utter drivel, after putting food down: couple of false starts until he came out from under the bed and ate. Kept checking I hadn't moved, then retired back to corner. Evening: ventured into windowsill with me in the room, got very excited watching the street. Nearly forgot his fear to play with the valerian sock for a mo.Has played with ball run and teddy on his own.
Much quicker coming out for food then back into corner for a nap? Did not want to come out for lunch, too warm? Squished himself on boxes again.Has played with tent and ball run on his own. Son sat with him for a while.
Has trashed room overnight!!!! Was on windowsill and didn't hide immediately when I went in with brekkie. Came out while putting food in bowl. Hid again, then sat on window for a while.Less blinking today.Licked my finger and tested it gently with teeth while taking treats!Ate while I sat on floor next to him, plus son in room too. Still returns to corner under bed.He likes the green spikey ball.
Sat next to him at brekkie, he let me touch his head! Returned to corner but let me scratch his ears. Tried a swipe when it got too much, but no claws. WE HAVE CONTACT! More head fuss throughout the day; his fur is very dense and soft. Feels dusty and is moulting a fair bit so have ordered a furminator.Had excursion around the house while other cat was out. Has tried different kind of treat. Has used litter tray with me in the room. Jumped off windowsill and hid when I tried to touch him, but permitted fuss while under bed: laying down relaxed.
Guess who left the treat jar open? Somebody has a night of enrichment activity!Still hides when I go in but comes out for food. Manage to touch him while he eats then he's back in the corner again, permits fuss while under bed.Stayed on the bed when I went in later - managed to sit next to him for a moment before scarpering. Came out for lunch then got back on bed for FIRST PLAY SESSION WITH ME!! (me sitting on floor).Likes 'stick under blanket', 'stick under tent', throws sushi toys, savaged tent pompoms.I ate my dinner in the room and he came and blinked adoringly at me, but didn't fancy the fried rice I showed him. Another play session after tea: has shredded the mattress cover, has good technique for bunching blankets up under himself. Does not want to be touched while playing.Has been sitting under the door.
Has been waiting behind door bedore shooting back to corner. Still not totally happy with being touched: permits a little head scratch before moving back to corner. Still panics if I walk towards him or move too quickly. Have put Pet Remedy in the room.Left me sit on bed next to him while he played. Likes 'fish onna string', not so impressed with tissue paper.I've swapped their litter trays so the cats can smell each other. He's not bothered.So it's been a week of talking constantly, getting up and down on the floor and hanging upside down over the end of the bed to reach his ears. He still startles easily but accepts my presence. He's been very gentl though and has not bitten or scratched. He's started crying at the door in the evening but I don't think he is ready yet to be let out while he still panics at the sight of me walking towards him. What stage do you think would be the right time? Would it be best to wait untill he doesn't run when I go in the room? or comes to me for fuss? Or tolerates being picked up? (Could I be asking too much?).
We hope that this wonderful diary has given you an insight into what to expect from a nervous cat and that they do take time to settle. This could be over a matter of days or even weeks but they still deserve a chance of a loving home.
Please keep an eye open for week number two in the life of Arizona.