Beautiful – but approach with caution!
Like so many cats, Jobie came to us because of peeing problems. It’s likely that she was always highly-strung, but added stresses tipped things over the edge for this poor girl.
She was a gift to the owner from a friend, and we don’t know what the background was. Ragdoll cats are frequently very cuddly – typically they go limp when picked up. Jobie was not hardwired for this; being picked up or petted was not a happy experience for her and she acted out with aggression and peeing. It’s quite possible that she was mishandled at some point, and many owners don’t know how to give a nervous cat the time and space to come to terms with their surroundings. The final straw was the arrival of a baby in the household; the peeing and swatting became too much, and Jobie found herself living at the Sanctuary.
Like all new cats, Jobie was given her own large cage in which to come to terms with the fact that life had changed. Initially she spent a lot of her time in her carrier, hidden from sight, but finally emerged and showed us her not-so-sunny disposition. Her cage was the first in the double-wide, with a lot of traffic, human and feline, passing by; we shielded her cage with a drape to give her some privacy.
Eventually we felt she was as ready as she could be, and opened the cage up. Jobie was NOT happy; this was her space, and she didn’t want any of these other cats coming into it! She rarely came out, and when she did, it was usually in order to find another corner where she wouldn’t be bothered. She would accept human attention with wariness, growls and swats; the Kitty Comforters spent regular time with her, but always very carefully.
It became obvious that she wasn’t happy, so we tried a move, and shifted her to one of the cages in the Tea-Room. Here she found there was less traffic, occasional human attention, but quite a lot more quietness. When that cage was opened, it was clear that the location shift was a good one for her; though there are still growls and swats, she is more accepting of attention, and has now started to investigate the gardens (though she still doesn’t like to use the cat-door, preferring instead to wait for a human servant).
I don’t think we’ll ever make a happy camper of Jobie – she has the typical Grumpy Cat outlook on life. But she’s gradually reconciling to her new situation, and even tolerating the occasional cat that trespasses in her space.