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PostPosted: Fri Sep 29, 2017 4:41 pm 
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Bengal Kitten

Joined: Fri Sep 29, 2017 4:18 pm
Posts: 1
Hi everyone,

My boyfriend and I just adopted a 2 1/2 Bengal named Benny on Tuesday. Benny needed to be rehomed after he started being bullied and attacked by a female cat in his previous home. We were told by the owner that we would be the perfect couple to take Benny since we had a pet free home. I've never owned a Bengal before but have had rescue cats my whole life without any housing issues.

I originally did not want to block him off to just one room because our spare room is tiny and dark (it's in the basement). I realize this may have been a mistake. The first night, he spent the whole night in our upstairs bathroom. He would back himself up into any corner he could find. Whenever he moves, he army crawls to his next spot. I could hardly get him to eat, and his previous owner swears that the way to his heart is through food so I figured it was from the anxiety and new environment. Yesterday, I come home and noticed he sprayed on the stairs. Not too big of a deal, I expected it with a new cat but was surprised since he had used his litter box earlier that day. But then last night we woke up in the middle of the night to him pooping on our bedroom floor. After that, I decided to keep him in our bathroom since that where's he has spent majority of his time. I have treats, food, water, toys, and his litter box in there. This morning I noticed he did use the litter box and ate all of his treats. But I'm still worried. He's still backing himself up into tight places. He lets us touch him. When we do pet him, he's a lovebug. I finally got him to purr yesterday and rub up against me but a few minutes later went back into hiding.

My boyfriend has never owned cats before so you can imagine with this being his first experience, he isn't happy, and leaning towards giving him back. I REALLY want this to work out, more so for the cat than myself. I'd hate to put it through any more trauma with rehoming him again.

Should I keep him in one room? Even though he has been throughout the house already? Any advice would be appreciated!!


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PostPosted: Sat Sep 30, 2017 9:51 am 
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Asian Leopard Cat

Joined: Sun Feb 02, 2014 8:11 pm
Posts: 1178
Hi and welcome,

Sounds like he’s very stressed out to me. Do you have any feliway plug ins to help him? I think I would keep him one place until he feels more comfortable. Maybe get a soft clean cloth andwipeon his cheeks and then rub it on your furniture and get his scent around your house. I’ve found zylkene very good when my boys are stressed. Takes a while to work though.

Do you have a flying frenzy/da bird? The way to a bengals heart is usually play and treats. But if he’s not ready for that, sit with him in the bathroom, don’t try to interact and talk gently to him.

It may be worth taking him to the vet for a check up as well as my vet was very helpful when Jagger was stressed and not using his tray.

It’s very early days as he’s not been with you long. It’s a big change for him and bengals can be very anxious when there are big changes in their lives.

There are other members who have rescued bengals and I’m sure they will see your post and give you much better advice than me!

Wishing you a happy outcome! It’s definitely worth persevering as bengals are very loyal and loving once they decide you can be trusted. Just take it at his pace.

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Clare
Hendrix and Jagger, Brown Marble Boys (born 18 August 2013)
Hampshire, UK


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PostPosted: Sat Sep 30, 2017 3:50 pm 
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Asian Leopard Cat

Joined: Thu May 23, 2013 2:21 pm
Posts: 8146
Welcome to our forum. Please do not give up on Benny. Try to understand the life he had previously in being bullied and attacked. He is a scared little boy which is why he backs up from you. These type of behavioral issues are common and it may take a while for him to get comfortable in your home. You may have had rescue cats in the past, but you have never had a bengal and they can be a challenge. They are also very loving, affectionate, social, energetic cats. You cannot expect Benny to immediately come into a new environment with new smells and new people and not feel stressed out. This is perfectly normal.

Locking him away in a small room probably wasn't the best idea, especially for a bengal. Is Benny neutered? Even neutered cats will spray -- they are marking territory. Was Benny ever an outdoor cat? If so, then being inside will be an issue. There are great catios and cat enclosure pictures online. You may want to train him to walk on a harness and leash (mine gets two walks a day and he sprays every shrub in sight). You need to let Benny investigate your home on his own terms. Bengals are HIGHLY social and want to be with their owners.

Your vet might prescribe something for stress. In the mean time, Benny needs love and affection from his owners. I know this can be trying (my bengal peed in my closet yesterday). And you may be pulling your hair out -- but, you might take this as a challenge. Human children are a challenge and you would never give up on one.

Benny needs to gain confidence right now. So, make sure you play with him and have a tall cat tree for him. Hand feed him treats. You have no idea the number of Bengals being re-homed after owners have given up on them. It is just sooooo sad. However, iIf you are not prepared to spend some time working with him, then by all means return him so he can find a good home.


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PostPosted: Sat Sep 30, 2017 4:16 pm 
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Asian Leopard Cat
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Joined: Thu Dec 02, 2010 1:00 am
Posts: 4141
Location: Portland Oregon, USA
The bathroom is not an appropriate saferoom, for many reasons. First and foremost, he is afraid and it offers him no place to hide (as you yourself described). And I think he probably just really really needs a place to hide and feel safe right now.
If the only room with a door in it, besides that bathroom, is your bedroom, then I think he'd be better off in the bedroom, but keep him confined to that room, until he has come out of his shell, and don't even think about letting him out for a few days.

Think of this as a test of character for you guys. Do you throw in the towel as soon as something gets challenging? He definitely needs cat parents who will stick this out with him. And if you keep him, this won't be the most difficult thing you go through... not by a long shot.

Spraying and peeing are really two different things. One is meant to mark territory (because he's stressed out) and the other is just emptying his bladder. A feliway plugin may help him feel a little more secure. But like I said, when he's this stressed out he shouldn't be just left to roam the house (and this is not unusual by the way).

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PostPosted: Mon Oct 02, 2017 12:01 pm 
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Asian Leopard Cat
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Joined: Wed Feb 22, 2012 6:18 pm
Posts: 1212
Location: Portsmouth, England
I adopted Morgana in April, so nearly six months ago - She was an unsocialised ex-breeding queen, at almost 5 years old (She was 5 in August). She had been at the rescue at least 4 months, and they had only just been able to get near her in the last few weeks before I saw her. She was so traumatised, she spent her time at the rescue hiding under a blanket in a corner of the pen, behind the shelf her bed was on! If anyone tried to touch her, she froze, and wet herself in fear. I was able to stroke her after a few minutes of quiet coaxing and sitting then lying on the pen floor, and they decided then and there that I would indeed be her next Mummy! I was also the ONLY person they had let see her, aside from the two staff at the centre!

When I brought Morgana home, she had the run of the house, food down in the kitchen, litter tray in the bathroom, and was left to find her own 'quiet place' for several days. Clearly she had been exploring, as food was eaten, litter was used, and things were moved or knocked over! I tried to change her to wood pellet, but she began weeing on rugs / floor, so she is still on horrendously expensive (Felipure) clumping type litter.

She weed on my bed a few times early on, mainly when I had any male visitors, but just hid when female / child visitors came round. She has gradually become nosy when she hears other voices, and is so much better - She will now sniff visitors, settle near me in the same room, and actually let my Mum stay over to cat sit when I had two nights away! She also likes my dad, who is an animal mad, soft goofball! The vet does worry she may have separation anxiety, as I am now back at work after 6 months off sick, but the hours are being increased gradually, and she is coping really well - better than me! I have a Pet Remedy Diffuser plug-in permanently on - One upstairs, one downstairs. They definitely helped. I keep thinking to stop using them, but Morgana still has little bouts of 'scaredy cat' so I will just keep going for now.

Nowadays, she has settled brilliantly, sleeps on my bed most nights, hassles me to see what I eat / drink. Takes treats from my mouth, and loves a good play and rub. She still hates being picked up, but tolerates it for a few seconds (long enough to get eye drops in last week!) and will walk across or stand on my lap, but hasn't yet sat down or settled there - I live in hope! She uses me as a climbing frame, and stands on my back if she can catch me sitting on the loo having a wee! She also has become somewhat of a social pooper - Coming in the bathroom to stink me out if i'm in the shower! Delightful little lady...

Anyway - Long story short, give him space. Let him come to you. Talk softly to him when he's about, and don't try to get him out from any safe places he finds. He needs to feel safe and secure, before he can learn to trust. Believe me, one day you may regret bringing out his true Bengal nature....lol.

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XXX RIP My Beloved Merlin XXX
30/01/2000 to 28/03/2017.
GONE TOO SOON.


Mummy to Morgana - Merlins Legacy of Love


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PostPosted: Mon Oct 02, 2017 6:39 pm 
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Asian Leopard Cat

Joined: Mon Jan 12, 2015 2:26 pm
Posts: 724
Bless the little chap. As the others have said, it sounds like the poor little guy is stressed out of his mind. Time, love and a lot of patience is the key. My rescue peed and sprayed when I got him. Please just know this behaviour is pure insecurity. Feliway and zylkene a good idea. Good luck and don't give up. You will have a loving companion when he settles and trusts you.

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Melissa

UK
Oscar - Rescue (Rascal!!!) Bengal


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