We cat owners love our feline friends, but sometimes their behaviour is simply baffling. If you’ve ever been nonplussed by your puss, these top tips could give you invaluable insight…
1. Cats are territorial
Your cat will get very anxious or aggressive if another cat enters its territory – which, unfortunately, could include your neighbour’s garden!
2. Felines like playing with other cats
Many cats benefit from having a pal to play with, but this works best if they meet each other from a young age.
3. Meeting a new cat is scary
Keep your new cat in a separate room until your old cat gets used to the scent – swap out toys and bedding and give treats to build positive associations.
4. Cats take different amounts of attention
Certain breeds need more grooming or stimulation than others – do your research if you have a busy lifestyle.
5. Grooming should start early
If bathing, brushing and claw-clipping is done from kitten stage, cats will be more tolerant – some may even come to enjoy it.
6. Claw clipping should be done gently
Choose a time when your cat is sleepy and relaxed, and take him or her in your lap in a quiet place. Start by massaging paws, and then move on to clipping.
7. Pet insurance is essential
Nobody wants anything bad to happen to their pet, but if the worst does happen, having pet insurance in place is important to cover any care and treatments your cat may need.
8. Withdrawal of attention helps establish discipline
If your cat is doing something you don’t like, do not shout or tell him or her off. Simply disengage by removing the cat from your lap or leaving the room.
9. Indoor cats need extra stimulation
Cat furniture, perching shelves and toys like feather whisks and lasers will reduce boredom and boost fitness.
10. Get a scratching post (unless you want all of your possessions shredded)
Cats need something to scratch to keep their claws sharp, which helps them climb.
11. Suckling and licking can be an embarrassing problem
Cats find this comforting but if it becomes too much, distract your cat, disengage or wear a citrus scent as a deterrent.
12. Adult cats only meow at humans
Kittens meow to tell their mothers they are hungry or cold, but grown cats do not communicate vocally.
13. Some cats meow more than others
You can reduce meowing by removing incentives, for example set an alarm clock for feeding or use an automatic feeder.
14. Prepare your cat for a new baby
Play a tape of baby sounds, wear a little lotion and gradually put out baby bottles and toys. When the baby comes, try to stick to established feeding and petting routines as much as possible.
15. It only seems like cats sleep a lot
Humans sleep at night, cats sleep in the day. Your cat will be most awake in the late evening and early morning, when it’s easiest to hunt for rodents.
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