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Thursday, February 22, 2018

Boxer and Blaze's Progress

Boxer's mom here:



I figure I should update you on the latest with that bossy cat we call Boxer.

When we last left you, Boxer had gotten aggressive with the Cat Patrol Captain, Fiona.  I was slowly phasing the two back together with little luck.  As soon as Boxer came in the room, Fiona who was visibly shaken and would go in the bedroom.  I tried this several times and it always ended with the same results.  A scared Fiona and a puffed up Boxer.

So what was Boxer to do?  He couldn't stay in his room 24/7.  He needed some space to move and get away from Princess Leia. (who definitely needed a break from him)  So we did the next and only possible solution.

See we have two pairs of dogs.  Two dogs on one side of the house and two dogs on the other, with the cat room in-between them.  The Back Dogs, Fiona and Zappa is where Boxer had always hung out.  He would go outside with them, sleep near them.  Almost all his time was with Fiona and Zappa.  This is why Boxer's sudden aggression and going into attack mode has visually shaken everyone.  It has upset the balance in the house and has been hard to get back.

Then we have the Front Dogs, Blaze and Chance.  Blaze has a very high prey drive, meaning she'll chase and try to kill anything smaller than her.  Over the last eight years, I've been trying to acclimate her to Boxer.  I tried all different kinds of methods with long breaks in-between, like months.  Blaze couldn't handle much more than 15-20 minutes of being around Boxer.  I tried to make each experience a positive one, with no accidents.



One day, I was in the cat's room and left the door open to the Front Dogs.  This is long before the riff with the Back Dogs.  Blaze and Chance came in the cat room, sniffed around, sniffed Boxer.  All went well and when Blaze got too hyper, I got her out of the cat's room and closed the door.  This has been going on for a year and a half, almost everyday, for short periods of time during the day, even if it only last for 5 minutes.  So now we are basically doing the same thing, with longer spans of time.

Boxer had to "earn" his way out of the cat room and into the Front Dogs room and all the way to the kitchen.  Each time he plowed a little more ahead and the dogs eventually let him in.  Inch by inch.  Slowly over time, they trusted each other a little bit more and now they are barely bothered by each other.

And Blaze...is doing great!   She gets a little hyper now and then and nibbles on Boxer to which they get a time out from each other. 

And as for Boxer...well, Boxer is happy to be out of his room, but he'd rather be in with the Back Dogs.  That's his "home."  Well, maybe some day he'll be back in there again.  I noticed some progress in that area that looks promising, we'll have to see where it leads.   =^.^=



Friday, November 3, 2017

Step One-Boxer makes some progress

One claw for cats everywhere!

If you read our post a few days ago, you know we suddenly have a problem with Boxer being aggressive with our two dogs, Zappa and more so with Fiona.

Boxer has had to stay in his room for the most part as I figure out what to do and how to do it.  I have had him out a couple of times twice with the dogs, where he crouched down and glared at the dogs in a defensive mode.  Once I had him out by himself, which of course went well, but I had a hell of a time getting him back in his room.

So tonight we tried again.  One hour before his dinner which would automatically get him back in his room to eat.  Both dogs were sleeping on the couches and stayed that way, basically ignoring Boxer.

But Boxer was keeping a close eye on them.  He seemed scared and was on alert.



So I decided to brush Boxer as he was a bit on guard and use the brush as a positive reinforcement.  I brushed him when he looked away from the dogs and stopped when he did.  I was doing good at first but lost focus after a while, but I still think it helped.  Not sure how much he may or may not have relaxed, I know Boxer was happy to be out with me, so it was worth it.  I didn't have any trouble getting him back in his room because it was dinnertime and a normal routine, so I think it really work out good.

What I'm thinking of doing is working backwards from dinnertime while slowly lengthening his time out with dogs and monitoring everyone.  Wish me luck!

Monday, October 30, 2017

Boxer becomes Aggressive.

Well, this has got to be a record for me in posting about the cats, but we are in quite a dilemma and I don't know what to do. 

About a week ago, Boxer and the two dogs, Fiona and Zappa were outside together.  Like they have been a hundred times before.  I went inside and next thing I know when I look out the door, Boxer is hunched down, growling and hissing at the dogs.  He was blocking the door for Fiona to come in and she was badly shaken. 

I have no idea what happened, even though I have a few guesses but regardless, Boxer has never been aggressive with any of the dogs or cats.  He is a bully, demanding and ruthless, but he has never turned like this.  I am at a loss and I'm not sure how to handle it.  I'll take any suggestions anyone has.

I have tried a couple of times to get them back together, but when Boxer sees Fiona he immediately hunches down, ears flat and just stares at her.  Fiona gets out of the room quickly.  So for the last week or so they have been separated.  The cats have their own room and so do the dogs.  I bought some Jackson Galaxy "Bully Solution."  A flower essence that is suppose to help Boxer not "own" everything and be cool with things.  I've only put it on once and not around the dogs.  I've heard mixed reviews with it, but I've found it difficult to find any answers as how to handle this kind of situation.  Again, anything anyone can add would be so greatly appreciated.  Thank you in advance. 

We will try to keep you updated with how this all goes.  Wish me luck!

Thursday, September 14, 2017

Boxer and Princess Leia-the Latest News

Hi!  Cat mom here and we are running quite the record here, a post a year.  lol  And I'd say were about due!

Momma Dog Silver


We had another loss in the dog family.  Silver, the mother dog died this past January.  Mammary gland cancer.  Silver was like the glue that held the family together and kept everyone in check.  Even Daddy Dog Brut.  The loss of him two years ago was shocking for everyone.  Eventually everything smoothed over because Silver was still here and quickly fell apart after she left us.


Boxer sleeping on Silver's blanket after she died.
  

So what does this have to do with the cats, Boxer and Leia?  EVERYTHING!

Boxer has become more of a bully to Princess Leia than he used to be.  Leia has become a nervous wreck and is in the process of licking herself bald because of Boxer.

Boxer has espeically become bossy with wanting to eat Leia's food before she does, but I have been monitoring their meal times and so that may be part of the reason Boxer is acting out towards Leia.

We are using a pharemone diffuser in their room. Which was working great,  Leia's fur was coming back, she seemed less anxious and Boxer had a calm about him.  Then we didn't realize it had run out and we are now right back where we started, except now Leia has even less fur than when we started.

UGH!



So the vet gave us some calming chews to help get Leia'a anxiety and constant licking under control.  As well as adding a Laxatone to help aid in eliminating the huge hairball that must be sitting in her stomach due to her constant grooming.  Cross your fingers it works.

We are trying to brainstorm ways to help Leia's anxiousness and Boxer's bullying and help restore some calm.  Anybody have any ideas?  We'd love to hear them!

Monday, December 19, 2016

What kind of food do you feed your cat?

Boxer's Mom here:

We want to know what feed your cat?  Wet? Dry? Raw?  Some of each?

I'm starting a gradual change over and I'm curious what you feed your cats.  Please let me know in the comment section the kind of food and brand.

Boxer and Princess Leia have always eaten dry food with some wet food.  For the last couple of years they have been on a weight loss dry food.  Well, they've lost the weight and I'd like to switch them to a different dry food since the weight loss formula has carbohydrates in it.  I'm not happy about that at all.  Since cats are obligated carnivores, I want a dry food without all the added rice and carbs for their diet.

 Currently we are using Nutro Weight Management Formula.  I believe it is a quality blend as my previous cat ate it and stopped throwing up and having diarrhea when she was diagnosed with cancer.  So I trust it.  Now I'm looking for something better without the carbs in it.


I have thought about doing raw with the cats, but I'm not good at knowing all of the things they need for supplements.  It's all too confusing to me.  Then I came across a great solution.  I found it on My Rotten Dogs (don't worry she has cats too!); a freeze-dried raw food mix for cats by Stella and Chewy's.



I started with a little and gradually added more.  Right now I am looking to replace the wet food (Friske's) which I know isn't the best brand out there.  Boxer is taking right to the raw food.  He gobbles right down.  Leia ate it the first couple of times, but now won't touch it.  I haven't figured out a way to rope her back in.  Neither of the cats have had anything but cat food and the occasional canned tuna.  I've had other cats that would eat cooked chicken and cheese, but not these two.  And even if only Boxer eats it, well that is better than not.

The freeze-dried raw food is really easy to use.  You just re-hydrate it with water, wait a minute and feed.  It has all the supplements and minerals cats need.

I'm looking for input from other cat lovers.  So tell us in the comments...what do you feed your cat(s)?

Thursday, December 1, 2016

Best Buds



Boxer here:

With my buddy, Zappa.  Although I still can't say much for the mutt circus I live with, Zappa and I can hang together.  We went out together all summer and as long as the Princess Cat Patrol didn't come running after me, Zappa and I were good.  We caught lots of bugs outside in the sunshine and laid in the cool dirt.  

It was meowing times.  Meowing.

Friday, November 25, 2016

Testing...Testing...1.2.3...




Boxer here:

We have been a little out of action for the last year or so and my apprentice is trying to get back into the 'claw' of things.  This past year has been especially hard on her after losing her dog, Brut.  

I've done all I could for my part.  Purring, clawing her lap, rubbing up against her to show her how much I love her.  I think it is working because she wants to blog for us, the kitty-kitties again, and we couldn't be happier.

So look for us out there in cyberland because she'll be asking questions about all things cats and looking for your helpful answers.  She is trying to understand cats which is difficult in her mutt-filled head.  But it looks like we are winning her back...one claw at a time