Aggressive Oregon kitty to get help from cat whisperer

Hold on, Lux - the Cat Daddy is coming.

Jackson Galaxy, star of Animal Planet's "My Cat from Hell," will be traveling to Portland, Ore., to work with the 22-pound house cat who became a worldwide phenomenon after he trapped his owners, their baby and the family dog in a bedroom.

Lee Palmer called 911 on March 9, saying Lux was on the rampage. Palmer said his 7-month-old son, Jesse, had pulled the cat's tail. Lux responded by scratching the baby's forehead. The baby was not seriously hurt, but Palmer said he kicked the cat, and that set Lux off into a paroxysm of anger.

Palmer and his girlfriend, Teresa Barker, snatched up Jesse and their dog, a Pomeranian named Smokey, and barricaded themselves in a bedroom while Lux howled and yowled outside. Police arrived and caught the cat in a snare.

Although Palmer and Barker said they wanted to keep Lux, the part-Himalayan was brought to the Multnomah County Animal Services shelter on Monday. Shelter officials said the family had not yet decided whether to give up the cat and they would work with the family to find the best solution for Lux.

And now they will be getting some help from Galaxy. The feline behaviorist's visit will be filmed for his show's fifth season, which kicks off April 26.

Galaxy says he wants to find out what's behind Lux's aggressive behavior.

"Every parental site on the Internet blames the cat for this confrontation. Every pet site blames the family," he said, adding that something is wrong if the cat is acting out. "We need to step away from the hysteria. There is a story behind all this. Don't assume anything."

Lux, a 22-pound part-Himalayan cat, trapped his owners inside their bedroom.
Lee Palmer, AP
Galaxy said there are many reasons a cat may behave aggressively, including health reasons.
"I've known cats who acted out similarly to Lux because of an abscessed tooth, a brain tumor, hyperthyroidism or diabetes," he said.

Galaxy said he was going to Portland to act as Lux's advocate and find out what's wrong.

"I have no idea what made Lux aggressive," he said. It could be a chemical imbalance, a history of stressful environments or because he was kicked."

The behaviorist, who has worked with tens of thousands of cats, said the thing that bothered him most about Lux was his continued aggression the day Palmer called 911, including the animal's ongoing assault on the door even though the threat was gone.

But the word "attack" doesn't sit well with Galaxy because 75 percent of the time, it's tied to a grouchy mood or a warning, he said.

"If I have a headache, I won't be the nicest guy in the world. I may snap at you," he said. "This may have been Lux's way of snapping. Hypothetically speaking, someone pulling his tail may have been the last straw."