Cats behavior often seems like an unsolvable mystery. You may have heard things like, “You can’t train a cat” or “cats are the owners and we are the servants” or “cats rule and dogs drool” and the list goes on.
How you interpret your cat behavior has a lot to do with understanding your cat and whether you’ll be able to bring consistent change to any behavior that are causing problems.
Until you understand your cats behavior, you will be left with lots of questions and few answers. Cat characteristics are very different from dogs or other animals and require a totally different approach.
Does you your feline have cat behavior problems. Below are some of the most common questions about cat behavior.
Why does the cat sharpen claws?
It is natural for the cat to sharpen claws, by doing that it removes the old outside of the claw, and a new claw and sharper claw will grow out. They need their claws to fight, hunt and climb trees. The cat also leaves a scent mark, that lets other cats know that this is your cat’s territory. Remember to get a scratching tree or it will scratch your furniture.
Why does the cat rub head against everything?
The cat leaves fragrances when it rubs its face against thing, animals and humans. The fragrance it leaves is called pheromones, and it is a crucial part of the communication between cats, the smell lets the other cat knows that this item or human belong time your cat. If it marks you it is a sign of trust and it feels secure around you. It is also a greeting ritual, between both cat and cat, and cat and human.
Can you educate your cat?
Yes, but cat is not a gregarious, it won’t be like a horse or dog who want to obey you to please you. It is wise to train your cat. Training your cat builds a strong relationship between you and your cat and you can remove cat behavior problems with cat training. The best and almost only motivation is food. But remember a cat is not a dog.
Why is my cat licking of all the hair on its belly and inner thighs?
It can be an itchy skin problem, like fleas or a allergy reaction, which is the most normal reason. But it is seen that some cats begin doing it when they get stressed because of territorial situations. It could be because of a new child, a new pet or even the neighbor’s new dog.
Why is cat peeing outside the cat tray?
Uncleanliness is the most common cat behavior problem. There can be many reasons for this problem but the most common problem is that the cat is suffering from a urinary tract disease, like cystitis or urinary crystals. Is is very important to get the cat examined by a vet.
Why won’t our new cat use the cat tray?
If it won’t use the cat tray it could be due to lack of confidence or it doesn’t like the cat tray or cat litter. It is a good idea to place a second cat tray in another room for the new cat, because it know that it is on foreign territory and it is rude to pee on other cats scent marks. Try calling the previous owner to ask for what kind of litter he used.
What can I use to clean up were the cat has urinated?
The most important thing is that you do not use ammonia containing products. Use a feliway, which is a synthetic fragrance, we can’t smell it, but the cat believes that it has already marked the place.
Why does a cat bites when we pet our cat on the stomach?
It is called overstimulation, and it happens often when you pet your cat on the stomach, even though they might have invited you to do it. Normally the cat will give you small signs, learn these signs to avoid getting bitten. If it begins with small movements in the tail, it is probably time for you to stop.
Why does our cat hide when we have visitors?
If the cat or a kitten haven’t been in contact and socialized with many people it will become a shy cat. Never try to catch or hold the cat, it will just make the problem worse. Instead let it hide, or let it run to high places where it feels safe.
We have taken a wildcat, and it won’t let us pet it or hold it, will we be able to do that in the future?
Cats behavior is often determent by hereditary properties and how the kitten is socialized. If the kitten is not socialized with people, it will be hard to build trust with it in the future. It will maybe allow you to feed and touch it a bit, but it will never be like a normal house cat. Try slowly to build a bond with the cat. Use food as a way to connect with the cat.
Why does the kitten suck on our clothes and fingers?
Cats who have been taken from the mother before 12 weeks, will begin to suck on you when you are petting it. This behavior will always be there, but it happens less and less as older the cat becomes.
My Siamese sucks on things that contains wool?
Wool eating is common at Siamese and other Oriental races. Some will only suck while others will eat it. To prevent this you can give your cat a more high fiber diet. If the cat has fallen in love with a furniture containing wool, try to spray it with perfume.
Our cat behaves like it is on drugs when we are dripping with valerian drops?
Some plants like the valerian contain essential oils that seems appealing to the cat. The cat will only be in the buzz for 10 min, and it is not addictive and totally harmless.
How can we make the cat stop using our neighbor vegetable garden as a toilet?
It is only following its instincts, but to prevent it from doing it in your neighbors or your own you can give it a nice alternative, like quiet place in the garden with loose soil were it can do its business. Or you can go the other way around and making the vegetable garden unattractive, by spraying it with citrus, peppermint or the commercial “Stop the cat” product.
We are getting a baby, what should we think about concerning the cat?
The cat and the baby should get along just fine. Of course your time will be moved from the cat to the baby, but introduce a daily patting time, so the cats knows that you haven’t forgotten it. Let the cat smell and investigate the baby and its things. If the cat is healthy and vaccinated it will be no risk for the baby. Some cats will be very interested others will ignore it.
Can we get another cat?
All cats are very different and not all cats will accept another cat. The outgoing and trusting cat, will quickly accept the new cat. And they will often be very happy to have another cat in the house. The shy cat will take longer time to accept the new cat, and can develop behavior problems like uncleanliness and aggressiveness.
We are moving from a house to an apartment. How do you think the cat will respond?
The respond is different from cat to cat. For some cats it is very traumatic to move to a small indoor place, especially if you aren’t home much. It is important that you familiarize yourself with the cats needs and mind. Make time for play and petting. And make sure that the new apartment is full of challenges for the cat. It can be a good idea to invest in a new cat.
Our male cat is aggressive against the female cat. Should we try to change the ranking?
No, we do not understand the cats social relations. Make sure that the female cat, can escape at all times. Try to expand the territory by adding more high places to their environment. You could place some cat caves on top of a bookcase. If that doesn’t help you need an expert to help you.
My cat won’t play with any toys. He sleeps or eats all the time?
An indoor cat who is protected at all times, and do not have to patrol its territory will have a lot of spare time. And if the owner isn’t home a lot, you will get an under stimulated cat, who main event of the day is to eat. Try to stimulate your cat as much as possible. Try buying new toys or try getting another cat.
What can we do when our cat digs in the houseplants?
They often dig to find out if it is a good place to go on toilet. To avoid this try to place large rocks, or other obstacles.
My cat is on hunt and attacking me?
If the cat can’t use its hunting skills on natural things, it will use others things, and sometimes that includes you. It is not because your cat is aggressive but it just have to abreact on something. Normally a cat hunts 30 times a day. You can buy toys for it, and play hunting games with it, to stimulate the cat.
Why does the cat lift its upper lip when it smells something?
It is called flehmen and it is a common thing for animals. It is when the cat take the scent to a special organ, which can decipher the scent. This is used when they pick up a scent mark from another cat.
Why does our cat come home with half dead mouse’s?
It see us as hopeless hunters, and it therefore wants to teach us how to hunt. This behavior is common with female cats. This is the same behavior she would have done if she had kittens. Instead of yelling at the cat, because we believe it is disgusting. We should praise it and give it some food, so you in the mean time can get rid of the mouse.
How many hours does a cat sleep?
The cat sleeps almost 16 hours a day. But they only sleep a few hours at a time. Cats can get used to sleeping at night together with the owner.
Why does a cat purr?
Many thinks that the cat purr when it is at ease, but it is not that simple, when a cat is injured is can begin to purr as well, many vets believe that it has a reassuring and calming effect on the cat. People have experienced cats purr after they have been run over.
How does a cat purr?
It has been a mystery for thousands of years and only recently has scientist agreed that the sound is made by two fake vocal cords which are next to the normal vocal cord.
Can big cats like tigers and lions purr?
No, they cannot. But they can make a small greeting sound when they exhale, and not like the cat, who can do it without exhaling.
Why does the cat “tramp” when you are petting it?
When we are petting the cat, it goes back to when it was a kitten, and we are the mother. As kittens they tramped and kneaded the mother cats udder. Take the tramping as it likes you and feel secure around you.
Why does the cat play with its prey and not just kill it?
Domestic cats are not often hungry because we feed them. But its hunting instinct is still there, and it has to stimulate it. The hunting is now more a game and they are doing it for fun. Wild cats will often kill their prey a lot faster.
Does a cat have a territory?
Yes, cats are a territorial animals. Their territories are delimited with scents marks. But territories can overlap each other. The size of a cat’s territory depends on how many cats there are and the possibility to expand.
How big is a normal cat territory?
It all depends on the number of cats in one area, in areas with no cats, the territory can be almost 600.000 m2. Normally the females area is only up to 60.000 m2.
Do cats have a ranking?
Yes, but is it not like dogs. The cat have a so-called relative ranking. The same cat can have different ranking on different places, at different times or in different situations. When a female cat is pregnant they have a high rank. The highest ranked cat does not have to be the strongest, but the most intelligent and the most balanced cat.
My cat eats the houseplants?
It is a part of the cats normal behavior to eat green plants. If it is an indoor cat you should consider removing toxic plants. You can also offer the cat some green supplements, like cat grass.
I hope this helped you answer some of your questions about cat behavior. Cat behavior can be very annoying for your family and cat behavior can ruin the relationship with your cat. Cat training is a great way to get rid of cat behavior problems.
Please share this with your friends, families and their cats, to help them with their cat behavior problems.