Why won't my cat let me pet him?
I recently adopted two cats from an adoption service. The previous owner had died suddenly, so no background info was available. One is a one-year-old Russian Blue, and the other a two-year-old seal point Siamese.
I gave the "boys" time to get to know their new home. They went into hiding for about 6/7 days. The first to come out for attention was Shadow. He "bowed" down paws stretched out, head on paws and accepted my loving pets and soft words of encouragement.
Next came Milo but with much more hesitation. He quickly got over his shyness and is my side-kick.
Shadow shies away from any attempt I make to pet him - he won't come for his food until I leave the room.
I've tried playing with him, talking softly with him but nothing seems to work. The two cats love each other and sleep curled up together during the day, and keep me awake at night thundering through my home.
I just wish Shadow would let me pet him and get closer to me. I've never owned a cat who didn't end up acting like a dog, rolling over for tummy pets, talking and interacting with me.
Any thoughts out there about my situation?
Reply from Caroline:
You don't say, Patricia, whether Shadow is the Russian Blue or the Siamese. (From his name, I'm thinking he may be the Russian Blue
But either way, I feel he may just need more time. With rescue cats, it's sometimes difficult to know what they were like in their previous lives.
Cats are very much creatures of habit, and I've heard of some adopted cats taking up to six months to come to terms with their new circumstances - new owner, new home, new surroundings, new feeding patterns, new toys ... all rather confusing!
Cats sometimes respond best to a little 'healthy neglect' and people who ignore them - so why not try this for Shadow? Beyond feeding him and making sure he has enough water, leave him completely alone and let him come to terms with everything in his own way.
Play with Milo as much as he'll allow you to - that way Shadow will see that you're not someone to be scared of.
Hope this helps, do pop back from time to time and let us know how they're getting on.
Any other thoughts, anyone? Please use the 'Comments' form below if you have any ideas for Patricia.