Cats are territorial animals which means they fight to defend their land or conquer other areas. They mark their territory with their scent pheromones (urine) to let other felines know they shouldn't step on the patch that doesn't belong to them.
Some groups of cats mind the territorial claims, others defy them, starting to fight.
If your cat fights often, you will have to put all your efforts into stopping it, or else your pet will end up with lots of wounds that can evolve into something more severe.
How Do I Stop My CatFighting (in short)
Be on the lookout for the pre-fight warning signs. There is usually a build-up to a fight where the two cats stand off from each other for a period of time. This could be a few minutes, it could be 15!
Remember they are patient animals.
The cats will begin to adopt an aggressive body posture and, in most cases, this will be accompanied by escalating growl and hiss vocalizations.
This can get very loud and if you hear this it is certainly time for you to step in. As an owner make your presence known and the two should separate and run away. But that is just the short-term fix.
How Do I Top My Cat From Fighting With Other Cats?
Why do cats fight? Male cats, mostly unneutered ones, like to roam beyond your house boundaries, display aggressive behavior and fight with other felines.
Nonetheless, there are many cats that tolerate other cats being on their territory and avoiding fighting.
Others, though, tend to display territorial aggression and fight for every inch of their patch or pick fights on a foreign patch to conquer it.
If your feline fights daily with other cats, it's recommended to secure your garden with a fence. By keeping your cat and the neighbor's one separated, you make sure the fights will end.
But if your feline is of territorial nature, enjoys aggressive behaviour, and loves fighting for control over areas beyond your garden, the fence will upset it and possibly make it aggressive. If your kitty stays indoors most of the time or doesn't like roaming outside your boundaries, the fence will work just great.
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Spotting the Aggressor
It's quite difficult to determine how many cats your feline has fought with, who initiated the conflict and who won it.
Vets say that the location of the bite wound can shed light on the fight's outcome. If your cat's injury is located on its tail somewhere around the rear quarters, it was most probably trying to run away.
If the wound is on the head, it doesn't yet suggest that your cat has won the fight, but, at least, it indicates that your cat didn't step back.
You can do your own investigation to find out which neighborhood cats your cat is scraping with. There might be a returning cat, a stray in the neighborhood that intrudes in foreign gardens or there might be many male cats in the area that fight with each other for territory.
The first step would be to talk to your neighbors about their cats and the other moggies in the area.Someone could have witnessed a fight wherein your cat took part and can provide you with more details.
You need to understand the dynamic here. For example, who the dominant cat is etc? Is it over-eager play fighting?
Many cats enjoy playing and fighting. They roll around, pounce, chase, and bat each other with their paws.
How to Stop Cats From Fighting: Tips
Neighbors who eyewitnessed a fight with your feline can help you identify at least one of its opponents.
If there are many cats in the neighborhood, fights may occur from time to time. But if they happen almost every day, you might want to start an investigation to eventually put an end to it.
First of all, you have to find out whether the cat has an owner or not.
If there are no signs it is owned by someone and it seems an unneutered stray, contact a rescue organization to pick it up and bring it to a pet shelter.
They will scan the feline in the first place to make sure it doesn't have an ownership microchip.
If the cat is owned, try to speak with its owner and agree upon a solution.
They are not legally bound to take any action to stop their cat, so you'll have to rely only on their goodwill and awareness of the problem.
There are some minor things the cat's owner can do to put an end to fights.
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You can ask him not to let his feline outside when fights usually occur. That is, if fights usually occur in the evening, ask your neighbor to keep its pet indoors.
The same thing applies to you.
Giving the cat a treat is the simplest way to lure them back indoors at the needed time.
If the evening is the outdoor playtime for your neighbor's cat, suggest they keep their pet on a leash or harness and prevent it from intruding on neighboring patches.
A great option would be to install a microchip cat flap on your door that will allow only your cat to get into your house by reading the unique code of the chip installed under your cat's skin.
If your cat refuses to go out after a number of attacks it fell victim to, make the appropriate changes inside your house to make it feel as secure and comfortable as possible indoors.
Place a litter box in one of the rooms so your cat doesn't have to use the litter tray or potty outside.
Also, give it many toys and many places to rest and have fun indoors.
Moreover, since the enemy cat can jump over the fence, consider installing some obstacles that will make the intruder's life difficult, such as gaps under the fence or a garden bed made of pebbles.
Cats hate walking on rough and uneven surfaces.
Cat Spaying or Neutering
This is a highly effective option.
Cats are much more dominant and aggressive when their hormones are peaking. So, spaying in a female cat or neutering a male cat should drastically the number of fights it instigates.
Definitely speak to your vet about this and some regions even provide this service for free as it also assists in keeping the numbers of unwanted and strays down.
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Cat Fights. How Long Do They Last?
It's rare that one-minute battles between cats turn into long-term wars.
In most cases, the fight has a winner and a loser and only a few disputes remain unsettled and lead to more fights.
After a Cat Fight
If your cat has just come from the battlefield, lock it in a room and let it calm down.
After fighting, cats might have lots of negative energy left, so you don't want them to roam around the house and pour their wrath on your assets.
If you notice open wounds on your cat's body, including scratches, nasty cat bites, or cuts, treat the wound with an antiseptic solution to keep infection away.
If your cat is lethargic and withdrawn after a fight, it might be in pain, so you need to take it to your vet for a check-up.
How Do I Stop My Cat Fighting? The Verdict
Most cat owners consider catfights as something natural and hard to avoid.
In the case of repetitive attacks by an aggressive cat, though, the victim's owner can go further with a legal dispute.
The attacker's owner can be found guilty of "nuisance" if his feline deals damage to property and injures people.
In that case, the local authorities will issue him an abatement notice where he has the obligation to stop his cat from causing further damage to the victim's property.
However, talking with the owner and making mutual decisions, and prevention actions, as we have outlined in this article, is the route we would definitely recommend taking.
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