Cat eating grasses in garden

Sorry I wasn't sure where to post this. I cat sit for a friend's indoor cat. I am going to adopt her soon as he can't take care of her properly. I am a bit worried about the re-homing process. She's nervous, had some bad people experiences, and won't let me pick her up :-(

In the meanwhile I visit her almost everyday, play with her, feed her and let her out the back garden for a bit of fresh air and exercise. His garden is weed-ridden, especially the lawn.  The last couple of times she has been nibbling on what I think might be dandelion or more likely cat's ear stalks (- I think they're the latter because more than one stalk from the base?) - which I read are okay for cats (can anyone confirm?),

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and grass (I think?)....

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Also she has been nibbling on the following brown spiky grass. Does anyone know what it is?I have been worried if it is okay.

imageimage

Thanks in advance.

Posts

  • ObelixxObelixx Vendée, Western FrancePosts: 16,741

    The bronze grass looks like one of the carex family.

    Cats eat greenery to help them eject fur balls as they can digest neither and they swallow lots of fur in the grooming process.  Nothing to worry about but, if you can start to groom her it will help.  You can get gloves with rough palms for grooming dogs which will help initially and then, if she settles to it, progress to a proper cat brush.  

    There are plants that can harm cats - pollen from lilies and hemerocallis can be fatal if they get it on their fur and then lick it off.  I've had cats for decades and grow lilies in pots - higher than a cat will brush past - and also hemerocallis and have never had a problem but if you do have them as cut flowers indoors, remove the pollen.

    "We don't stop playing because we grow old; we grow old because we stop playing." - George Bernard Shaw
  • DovefromaboveDovefromabove Central Norfolk UKPosts: 54,430

    The last picture looks like Soft Rush ... Juncus effusus (hollow stems with a white pith).   It did me no harm when I nibbled on it as a youngster ... don't think it'll do the cat any harm.  

    Pretty sure Cats' ear is ok too ...  cats often eat grass ... it often makes them sick and they bring up fur balls ... it does't mean that anything is wrong so don't panic if that happens.  

    image

    Last edited: 25 August 2017 11:10:41

    “I am not lost, for I know where I am. But however, where I am may be lost.” Winnie the Pooh







  • wakeshinewakeshine Posts: 951

    Thanks Obelix for the help. At the moment she won't let me pick her up so I don't know how I'll groom her. I will maybe have to see about it later. I know I really need to as she is semi-long haired. Someone has mishandled her and she just runs away if I try to pick up up so I have stopped trying. She was okay about 6 months ago, I am worried the rehoming will upset her further rather than build her confidence.

    So this carex grass and other weeds okay for her? He has lillies in his garden but so far she has not gone near them and they have finished flowering. When she comes to mine I have lillies aswell. I will try to put them at the back of the border or get rid of them completely. She seems to be quite clever and very selective about what she touches/chews.

  • DovefromaboveDovefromabove Central Norfolk UKPosts: 54,430

    If you think the cat is likely to be anxious when she comes to your home, get some of the Feliway products ... they worked very well when Wonky adopted a very nervous Harrie image

    Last edited: 25 August 2017 11:13:18

    “I am not lost, for I know where I am. But however, where I am may be lost.” Winnie the Pooh







  • ObelixxObelixx Vendée, Western FrancePosts: 16,741

    You don't have to pick her up to groom her .  Stroking will lead you gently to stroking with a grooming glove and/or a brush.    

    When you do take her to your home, let her have some peace in one room where she can hide under a bed until she feels safe to come out.   Make sure she has water and cat biscuits available and offer small treats to tempt her.  Go in and chat and just sit or lie quietly till she gets used to her new human. Having one of those covered litter trays will help her feel safe too until she's settled enough to go out and come back in.

    After 2 or 3 days - or more if you think she needs it - let her explore the rest of your home and all the new smells and safe or comfy places.  try and stroke her but don't insist.  Let her get used to you.   Don't let her out for at least a couple of weeks.

    Try the Feliway pehromones too.  They didn't work for us on one adopted cat but the doggy ones have helped with our nervous adopted Lab so worth a go.

    We adopted a cat a few years ago - found abandoned and starving in an out building and very fearful of people.  After making her a safe and cosy bed and feeding her up for a couple of months and talking to her so she knew my voice, I managed to catch her and get her to the vets for check up and sterilisation.  Kept her in a bedroom for 3 days to recover after which she stayed upstairs for 3 months before venturing out for a whole 5 minutes.   It took a while but she eventually learned to enjoy cuddles and trust us.   She even learned to tolerate vets for her annual check up and jabs.

    "We don't stop playing because we grow old; we grow old because we stop playing." - George Bernard Shaw
  • wakeshinewakeshine Posts: 951

    This is lovely to know Obelixx. Really great advice, thank you so much. At the moment I have the study I can put her in, it's the converted garage. It's nice and warm. Is it okay to put her litter tray in the same room as her food station but at the other side? It's a big room. Eventually I really haven't figured out where to put her litter tray. I don't want to have it in the same room as where her food is, I don't think she'll like that. She has a basic open tray. Is it easy to train them to use a hooded tray or to go outside? At the moment she goes to use a litter tray in the bathroom upstairs...it would be good if she can have a simmilar system at my place but other people in the house might not agree to putting the litter tray in the bathroom upstairs...I don't have a cat flap.

  • ObelixxObelixx Vendée, Western FrancePosts: 16,741

    OK in the same room but well away from the food.   Litter tray with no cover OK too but the lidded ones are more private so she'll feel safer and also less litter gets scattered about for you to clean up.

    The study sounds fine.  We've always used a bedroom as we tend to have doors to outside open a lot and they do, sooner or later, find comfort in sleeping on the bed snuggled up to a warm human but I do see that not everyone wants a bedtime pussycat.

    Our current pair of rescue kittens share a sheepskin I had for lining Possum's buggy when she was a tot - kept the winter cold off her back.  If she doesn't already have her own bed or cushion, you can buy fake fur basket liners for travelling baskets at the pet store or good garden centres.  They have a slight rim which also adds to security.

    "We don't stop playing because we grow old; we grow old because we stop playing." - George Bernard Shaw
  • raisingirlraisingirl East Devon, on the Edge of Exmoor.Posts: 3,496

    If you're just sitting in a room with her and not touching her, see if she's watching you. If she is, very briefly meet her eye then immediately shut your eyes and turn your head away. Do the same anytime you catch her eye. As Ob says, she'll need a place that she can go to where she can see out, but feel protected. When she goes there, wherever it is, no one - you included - should approach her or try to touch her, so she has an absolutely safe retreat and can chose to face the world on her own terms.

    She will, in time. image

    It's hard to love, there's so much to hate
    Hanging on to hope when there is no hope to speak of
  • TootlesTootles Posts: 1,469

    Wakeshine

    what a wonderfully kind thing you are doing. That's one lucky kitty to have met you. 

    I hope kitty settles and you have a lovely time together.

  • ObelixxObelixx Vendée, Western FrancePosts: 16,741

    RG is right.  Staring at a cat is a sign of non acceptance verging on aggression so always glance away.

    "We don't stop playing because we grow old; we grow old because we stop playing." - George Bernard Shaw
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