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PostPosted: Sat Feb 11, 2017 3:55 pm 
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Bengal Kitten

Joined: Sat Feb 11, 2017 3:42 pm
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Hello all,

I just adopted a Bengal named Zuni from a local shelter. They tell me she is 4 years old but she is so very small and looks more like a kitten. She is very nervous and scared. I was told her owner had to relinquish her due to health issues but she is so afraid of so much, I fear she may have been abused. She was at the shelter for less than a month and they had her drugged on meds to keep her calm. She is a darling girl and I will work with her for as long as it takes for her to become comfortable with me. I have a rather large home and I'm keeping her in a master bedroom with bath only for now so as not to overwhelm her. Zuni is my first Bengal and I've read a lot but have a few questions. I know bengals like to climb to the highest point in any room but I've let her in my closet a few few times where I have shelves built into the walls. She's managed to climb to the top shelf a couple of times and I have very high ceilings so the shelf is so high up. She's not able to climb down again so she's jumped twice now onto a hardwood floor. I'm worried she will hit her tailbone when she lands and hurt herself. Is that possible with a Bengal and should I keep her out of that closet?

Also, she at times purrs very loudly which I know cats will do when they're stressed out to comfort themselves but at times it's so loud and then suddenly a loud 'woof' will come out -- like a dog bark. Is this normal or is she trying to clear out her lungs? I'm concerned she may have a breathing issue.

Lastly, I have a ledge in another part of the house that overlooks the front door below. The drop is about 30 feet and I'm so afraid that when she's ready to roam the rest of the house, she will find this ledge and try to jump. It will clearly injure her if not kill her. Should I be concerned about this? Are Bengals smart enough to understand that this is just too high of a jump?

Thank you so much for your help. I appreciate any advice on how to help this little sweet girl get acclimated to her new environment and me.

J


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PostPosted: Sun Feb 12, 2017 6:37 pm 
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Asian Leopard Cat

Joined: Thu May 23, 2013 2:21 pm
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Welcome to our forum and congratulations on your kitty! I'm sure being in a shelter was terrifying for your new baby. And then going to a completely different environment can stress a cat out. The main thing you need is patients -- and a tall cat tree! If she loves climbing, a cat tree would be much safer for her as she can climb up and get back down. I would not let her in your closet. She doesn't need to get used to being in there.

Hopefully, you are spending time engaging her in play. Bengals need lots of wand toys. Entice her to come to you by offering her treats. Know that she will become more confident with time. The one thing you do not want to do is approach her and try to pick her up. Many bengals do not like being picked up and held and they are not lap cats.

At some point, she will need to visit a vet -- wellness visit or vaccines. I'm guessing the shelter administered them for the time being and checked her out. The sad thing is that she was drugged to keep her calm. I am hoping that your environment is quiet for her. Some bengals want it quiet and if you have kids and other pets, it can be a noisy, active home. I know my bengal doesn't even want the TV on.

Just be patient with her and work with her daily. You may not notice anything different day to day, but over time, she should come out of her shell. Bonding sometimes can take weeks. You will get there. She needs love and attention -- and she has that now.

I do hope you will continue to keep us informed on how she is doing.


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PostPosted: Mon Feb 13, 2017 2:58 pm 
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Asian Leopard Cat
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My cat Grace will occasionally bark. I think she hears dogs in the neighborhood bark and is experimenting.

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PostPosted: Mon Feb 13, 2017 4:08 pm 
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Asian Leopard Cat
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Location: Portland Oregon, USA
Birdgirl522 wrote:
She's not able to climb down again so she's jumped twice now onto a hardwood floor. I'm worried she will hit her tailbone when she lands and hurt herself. Is that possible with a Bengal and should I keep her out of that closet?


Yes, that is a very likely scenario (her jumping down from that height because there is no other way down and hurting herself). Please keep her out of the closet.

Birdgirl522 wrote:
Lastly, I have a ledge in another part of the house that overlooks the front door below. The drop is about 30 feet and I'm so afraid that when she's ready to roam the rest of the house, she will find this ledge and try to jump.


I have a similar arrangement in my house, where on the 2nd floor there is a spot where there is a ledge that overlooks the front door. The drop is maybe 15ft. The two bengals love to jump up onto that ledge and sit up there. It scares the be-jezus out of me, but they've never attempted to jump down to the first floor. The highest/craziest jump that Serafina has ever made was jumping down from some shelves I installed for her in my bedroom, maybe 8' or 9' high, down onto my bed. She has another, easy way down, but chose the plunge. I guess maybe if I was a bengal I might do that too. An 8' jump down onto a "trampoline" like that might be fun. Problem was, I was actually in the bed when she did it :eek:

But yea, cats don't like to jump down from huge heights (if they have a choice), they can gauge the distance and potential impact. That's why they get stuck in trees and need rescuing sometimes.

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