snrein1016
Hi all. I have a question I'd like some feedback on. I lost my beloved James a few weeks ago and my other male cat has not been the same since. This really surprises me because they were not well bonded. As a matter of fact, James hated Ryan. They never spent time together or cuddled together. But ever since James has been gone, Ryan has been crying a lot and getting irritated when I try to pet him. It sounds like grief to me, but they didn't like each other, so I'm a bit confused. Is this type of grief common for cats who didn't like each other? Ryan doesn't like change so perhaps it's just anxiety about the change in our household? Thoughts are appreciated. Blessings to all.
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Lynn_E
I'm not an expert but definitely sounds like he's grieving. I lost my little boy Peter just a little over 2 weeks now. Still grieving here. I have Olivia and her and Peter were not too close either. They sometimes wrestled each other and instigate each other. A lot of the time Olivia didn't want to be where Peter was because he was the dominant cat.  But when Peter passed, she became extra needy and clingy. It broke my heart. I was grieving but I had to help her with her loss as well. She was meowing a lot and would look for Peter. I got his carrier out and she smelled his scent and was all excited; thought he was in his carrier :(  She was poking for him to come out of the carrier. I think Ryan has a sense of loss; even though they didn't get on, he was used to having him around.  Even though they didn't cuddle, they were still brothers, and he senses that he's gone and I'm sure he misses him now.  So sorry for your loss about James. I hope this helps. 
Lynn, Peter’s mom 
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snrein1016
Thanks Lynn. That is helpful. I appreciate you sharing that because I've been quite confused. I'm so sorry for your loss too. My heart is just totally broken, as I'm sure yours is.
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Jan_H
When cancer took my boy Jag last year my other boy, Tiger, was very clingy to me also. They never seemed to get along that well and I had assumed that either one would be happier as the only cat. But Tiger definitely missed Jag. Maybe they were company for each other, maybe they enjoyed wrestling or maybe Tiger just enjoyed annoying Jag. I don't know but I know Tiger and I grieved together and helped each other through the pain.

Jan
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Memories_of_Marmalade
Dear snrein1016,

First I send you my sincerest condolences for your loss of your cat "James."

As I've shared here, my cat "Marmalade" was the leader of a colony of feral and stray cats, in the high desert country of New Mexico, on the dusty streets of a Barrio. There were 7 cats in the colony including: "Marmalade", "Tommy", "Big Boy", "Figaro", "Tabby Hunter", "Mouse" and "Baby." Even though the males were not close per say, you could tell that they knew and fully understood that they were all part of a cat colony together. Like a dog pack.

None of the males had been fixed (yet, I moved out of state before having the chance to do so) but they would not fight one another. Nor would they challenge "Marmalade." He would raise a paw slowly like a King and the much bigger males would always stand down. Even though he was scrawny, smaller then them, in ill health and near completely deaf.

If and when a rival Tom Cat would come onto the property where we lived (and the cat colony hung out around) one of the males (the majority of the time "Marmalade") would immediately attack and/or drive the intruding male out off the property. It was like seeing a little pack of lions all on watch. With "Marmalade" willing to fight to the death to drive the intruder out. From what I have researched and read, cats even think they are protecting us humans from intruders, as they feel that we are part of their cat colony too.

So most likely even though your cat "James" and "Ryan" were not close, they still saw each other as fellow members of your colony (your family.) And that your colony has suffered the loss of a member. 

"Ryan" may also be a bit concerned that whatever happened to James may now happen to him. Like being put out. So just be patient with him obviously and he will eventually come to terms with either his grief and/or concern(s) and stabilize.  

Kind regards,
James







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