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One tenant girl had bought a huge teddy bear and came to show it.

Bhutu, my cat, reacted as if she has seen a ghost and ran for her life.

She is usually a very cheerful girl always trying to play with me and my family. She shows all shorts of circus the whole day.

But then as the tenant girl went away, she even forgot to meow for 4 to 5 hours.

Now, whenever Bhutu sees that girl she gets terrified and runs for cover.

That tenant girl loves Bhutu very much and comes to play with her everyday. Bhutu seemed to like the girl. She has known this girl for about 6 months now.

Now, how to make Bhutu comfortable with that girl again?

Also is it possible to remove Bhutu's fear towards teddy bears?

  • We have a bunch of related questions, but most of them have only one answer, so I'm reluctant to choose which one this is a duplicate of. Use the search terms "cat terrified" and you'll find a lot of similar questions. Since I'm currently using the SE app (which sucks) I cannot list them as related. – Elmy Dec 30 '18 at 9:47
  • Giving food to the cat. I think the tenant girl might gain Bhutu's confidence if she feed her. This works with dogs so might work with cats too. And of course ask the tenant girl to not to bring the huge teddy again so that your cat doesn't freak out again. – I likeThatMeow Dec 30 '18 at 18:24
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The trick is not to let the girl approach the cat, but to let the cat approach the girl. You need to get the cat to consent to interacting with someone she currently does not want to interact with.

A simple solution can be found via treats. If the girl holds treats, without being too forward towards your cat, the cat has two choices:

  • Face her apprehension and get treats
  • Refuse to interact and get no treats

It's probable that she'll refuse to engage the first few times. However, every time nothing happens, is also a (silent) interaction between the girl and the cat which does not end negatively for the cat. Over time, the cat is going to realize that this girl has not harmed her the last 10 times she saw her, so why would she now?

You'll see that she'll inch closer, and eventually will take the bait and go for the treats.

Note: It's also possible that the cat refuses to interact with the girl, end of discussion. Some bad memories stay bad memories; and you're not going to fix it by forcing the cat into an interaction she does not want. Sad as it may be, if she does not want to reconsider interacting with the girl, then you should respect that decision. All you can do it give her a benefit to voluntarily interacting such as treats.

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  • And is it possible to make the irrational fear of cat towards teddy bears go away? – Sonevol Jan 21 '19 at 12:57
  • @Sonevol: The approach is the same: let the cat decide to go near the teddy bear. Put a teddy in a room with some treats on it - but make sure it's a room she can avoid if she wants to. If you want to measure your cat's progress, put a line of treats down, leading to the teddy bear, and see how close she is willing to go. You may see progress over time. You may not. – Flater Jan 21 '19 at 13:00

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