How can I make my cat more affectionate?
Original Question: We took our cats in Irean (we think is 2 years old), Skip, and Susey. They are fine in the room with us but will not let us touch them or pet them as they will freak out. We want to take them to the vet for regular care and also any emergency that may come up. But we cannot as we can't catch them. We could get them used to us picking them up and petting. etc. We want them to have the best life possible but we can't get help for them as we are unable to get them to a vet. In the long run, they may suffer medical problems because of this. Can you help us in any way? They will play with all the toys we have for them and sleep in the room when we are there too, but that is as much interaction as they will allow. We love them very, very much and want only the best we can give and do for them to make their life as happy as possible. Please if you can help we would be so grateful. - Myra
I commend you for wanting to give your cats the best care and understand the frustration that comes when a cat hates being held. Cats are often wanting to be their own boss and that means them doing things on their own terms. I’m unsure if your cats were previously feral. It sounds like the cats will tolerate some handling but not much. I would encourage you to work up to handling by bribery…special food treats and catnip might help and you can try to use them when your cats do socialize or interact with you but only when they let you sit close to them or pet them. I recommend you do this before working up to pick them up. Hopefully, this will create positive relations with you. It would also help to talk with your vet and see what they might be able to recommend or prescribe that could be diffused in the air or fed to them to help facilitate getting them in a carrier.
Dr. Ryan Llera
Disclaimer: healthcareforpets.com and its team of veterinarians and clinicians do not endorse any products, services, or recommended advice. All advice presented by our veterinarians, clinicians, tools, resources, etc is not meant to replace a regular physical exam and consultation with your primary veterinarian or other clinicians. We always encourage you to seek medical advice from your regular veterinarian.