Something scared my cat and now he won't come out from under the bed or eat and is losing his hair

by Deidre
(Boston, MA)

I have a 4 year old deaf cat that I adopted, along with his sister, as a kitten. He's incredibly friendly and social and very sweet and affectionate with everyone, even people who are over to my house for the first time.

However, a few days ago my sister came in from out of town. I wasn't home when she arrived (I left the keys for her). She said that she entered my apartment (along with her friend) and he ran off and went under the bed to hide. She's a huge animal lover (volunteers at animal shelters) and he's been around her many times before. I've NEVER seen him run and hide from anyone - usually he's in their lap wanting to be petted.

He came out from under the bed once (when my sister left for a few hours) but immediately climbed up to the top of my kitchen cabinents. As soon as she came back, he jumped from the cabinents to the couch (which is a huge distance and which i've never seen him do before). I tried to pick him up but he jumped from my arm (scratching me so badly I was bleeding) and then ran back under the bed, where he's been since. He's not eating (I even put food and water under the bed for him), and he's shedding a ton of hair. I have no idea what is wrong with him and no idea what to do.

The other problem is that I'm leaving the country for two weeks in a few days and my sister is staying at my house to watch my cats!

I desperately need some advice. I don't have time to take him to the vet (I'd have my sister do it but clearly that's not an option) and even if I did, I don't think I could get him out from under my bed (it's too close to the ground for me to get under).

Please help!

Thank you!


Hi this sounds like an extreme reaction to something and i am wondering if it actually has nothing to do with the people scaring him but the fact that something may be causing him some discomfort. This would account for the scatty behavior which can be a little aggressive also the shedding of fur.

I understand your problem about time etc but if you can't get close enough to examine him to see if he has fleas , or mites or a skin issue or something obvious which may be causing him distress then i think that it is kinder to make one big effort to get him to the vets and have him checked over.

You won't be able to enjoy your trip away if you are worrying about your cat.

Perhaps your sister could take him after you go, perhaps she can get a friend to help her. tell her to wear protective gloves in case he goes wild and to cover the cage with a towel so that if is dark this will help to calm him down. There are also some calming sprays you can get which may help. I believe they are called felaway.

The fact that he is not easting as well definitely suggest that he is not feeling himself and it may be something more than just anxiety.

I hope you can find a way to get to him before your trip.

best wishes kate

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