Don’t you just hate it when you “meow” at a cat and they don’t “meow” back? To be honest, it’s not their fault. Cat Whisperer, Jackson Galaxy, explains that meowing is the cat’s way of trying to communicate with us in our own language but it’s not their natural method. We’ve been trying to introduce ourselves wrong the whole time! Here are the 10 cat introduction etiquette rules:
1. Bond while they’re young.
The cat is capable of social interactions and forming relationships as early as 2 weeks of age. Let the cat feel safe and loved. Avoid letting them feel any negativity and protect them from painful situations.
2. Observe the cat’s body language.
Tail up means they feel like socializing while tail down means they’re disinterested or in hunting mode. If they stare it at you, they’re uncomfortable while blinking indicates the opposite.
3. Make yourself small.
Cats are very sensitive to the body language of humans and other animals. They observe even the smallest shifts. Allowing yourself to seem smaller makes you less intimidating to them. Experts like Dr. Marci Koski, Ph.D., crouch when meeting a cat for the first time.
4. No direct eye contact.
This can come as intimidating to a cat or even aggressive. You can look at it briefly but then pretend to turn your attention elsewhere. Keep eye contact to glancing. Staring is even worse. It’s considered a threat among felines. Blink a few times when they make eye contact with you before looking away.
5. Don’t pay attention to the cat.
When it wants to bond, it’ll approach you and try to get your attention. Sit or lay down on the floor to make yourself seem less daunting. The cat will become more relaxed and will consider you less of a danger.
6. Let the cat sniff or lick you.
Sniffing is how cats say hi for the first time. They have special glands and acute sense of smell that allows them to identify people as well as other animals by their scent. A cat would also lick you as a way of getting to know you.
7. Give treats/food.
Place them on the ground between the two of you until they’re comfortable enough to take it from your hand. Opt for those that emit strong smells of fish, catnip, and other feline favourites.
8. Offer toys.
Playtime is a great way to bond but remember cats like their space. Don’t force them to play if they don’t want to and keep it short.
9. Pet only when they let you.
If they lay on their side or stretch in front of you, it means they’re comfortable enough that they can relax and let you touch them. They can also try to get your attention by lightly holding you with their claws. Avoid trying to pet a cat that’s scared. You’ll know when they lie with their ears back and stiff. Any attempt of physical contact would invite aggression from the cat.
10. ve them their space.
Cats are very independent and like doing things at their own pace. It needs a place where it feels safe, an area they can escape to when they start to become overwhelmed. When approaching the space, never make the cat feel cornered.
Meow for now… Kristian
Nope, not the dinosaur with wings. What we’re talking about is Polydactyl. These are cats that have more toes than usual. The average cats have 18 toes – five on each of the front paws and four on both of the back ones. But some have more than these, they are what we call polydactyl cats.
At first glance, it may just seem extra toes or to some, it may not be that interesting, but there definitely is more to these than meets the eye. Here are 11 things that most people are not familiar with polydactyl cats.
They aren’t members of the X Men or something like that. It’s just that being polydactyl for cats is a genetic mutation. It is passed down through a dominant gene. Depending on the parents of these kitties, if one is polydactyl, there is a huge chance that one of their kittens will be polydactyl as well.
Some might be alarmed of this as it is not usual for cats to have extra toes, but worry not, it is usually harmless, although, it might give you a bit of trouble when it comes to trimming their nails. Just be wary about their forelegs, as in rare cases, being polydactyl can lead to twisted or underdeveloped forelegs.
Ever seen a cat with thumbs? There are cases where the extra toes of polydactyl cats are positioned in a way that they would look like thumbs, commonly known as, “Mitten paws”. But they’re not opposable, so it wouldn’t be able to function like our human thumbs.
For kitties that don’t have thumbs or “Mitten paws”, they get the nicknames “Bigfoot” or “pancake feet” because it generally makes their feet look bigger.
Admit it, kitties with huge paws are cute. With polydactyl cats, it just makes them a little cuter than they already are. Now that’s an asset.
- Rare for others, common for some
It may not be seen that much in each of our regions, but there are countries where polydactyl cats are quite common. These are; England, Wales, and the eastern parts of USA and Canada.
- Good Luck!
Sailors used to believe that these kinds of cats are good luck. They were given the title of “Gypsy cats”. Because of their large feet, they were thought to make them better at catching mice and have better balance.
- Polydactyl Breeds
American polydactyl and Maine Coon Polydactyl are considered polydactyl breeds. But some don’t consider them as legit breeds.
- Maine Coon
40 percent of Maine Coons once had extra toes. Since Maine is a state that gets more than a hundred inches of snow annually, the large paws turn into feline snowshoes.
- Twenty – Eight
28, that’s the Guinness’ World Record for the cat with the most number of toes. It was given to a Canadian cat named Jake.
- Hemingway Cats
Stanley Dexter, a captain in 1930 gives a polydactyl cat to Ernest Hemingway. He named it Snow White and that gave a start to many more polydactyl kittens. Today, 40 to 50 polydactyl cats, some of which are Snow White’s descendants, are considered as a historical treasure at Hemingway’s Key West, Florida, the home of Ernest Hemingway.
So, there you have it! Now that you know more about polydactyl cats, you may want to look into your kitty’s paws. You never know, maybe your precious feline companion is a descendant of Hemingway’s Snow White.
Meow for now… Kristian
We know you pet owners can’t wait to get your paws—er, hands—on them from reading the title alone and are struggling to contain yourselves. If you’re looking for reasons to justify not buying at least one or two pieces, this isn’t that kind of article. Though we’re not lobbying for you to go out and buy them right away, but we really should, you’ll find this collection more tantalizing than you imagined. That’s without us even trying to convince you. Did we mention there are accessories too? Insert knowing nod here.
Made to Integrate with Your Current Living
The good news is you don’t have to throw out any IKEA furniture you have. The bad news is, if you’re fighting off the urge to splurge on your pet, we can feel your resolve slowly slipping. This collection of special pet items called “Lurvig,” which is Swedish for hairy, are designed, not just to stand on their own, but are suited to go together with the rest of your home, particularly IKEA furniture.
Tired of seeing frays of wood on your table legs from your cat’s scratching? Now, you can compromise. The scratching mat was made to wrap around them perfectly. Also, the cat house can easily fit in your furniture to look almost like another compartment on a shelf. You can also have it raised with its own set of legs to give it some height, just the way your cat loves it. Then use it as another table or stand and place a decor on top like a potted plant, a lamp or books. It can also fit perfectly into its namesake shelf, Kallax. The play tunnel is compact and can easily fit under your dining table so it doesn’t get in the way…
You won’t need to compete with space on your couch anymore. Your pets can have their own. Yep, you read that right. It’s stylish and minimalist, too. If you feel it’s spoiling them a bit too much, just go straight to the pet bed. It’s comfy and attractive enough to look great in any part of your home whether next to your couch or by your bed. One pet owner even bought it for their bunny and posted it on Instagram. Think about it, if their bunny looked adorable on it, imagine how your cat would look lounging there.
IKEA pretty much got everything covered. They have leashes, beds, sofa covers, blankets, travel bags and a cat toy. Before you take that trip down to your IKEA store, you need to muster every ounce of self-control or put yourself in danger of going on a big shopping trip for your pet. Then there are the usual tempting furniture you can buy for yourself, too.
For pet parents living outside of Japan, US, Canada, Portugal, and France, you won’t have the same struggle as the collection is only available in the aforementioned countries. For now. In the meantime, here’s to a more pet-loving, pet-welcoming business community, the ingenuity of a few who started what looks to soon be a revolution and to the day when this collection is global.
Meow for now… Kristian
As cat lovers, nothing beats getting home after a long day of work with your kitty welcoming you back to your house with purrs and with tails held high. But that’s not the only thing a cat’s tail does. We see and enjoy the company of our kitties every single day, but have we asked ourselves if we really know every single corner, joint, or part of our kitty’s body? Let’s start getting to know our kitties more! And one part that most people are not that much aware of is the purrty tail of kitties. Keep reading and you’ll find that a cat’s tail is more than just an elegant, furry swerving part of a kitty.
First, let’s get a bit scientific. Before we get to know what it’s for, we have to know what it’s made of and how it is able to move. An average cat’s tail measures 11 inches long for males and 9.9 inches long for females. It has 19 to 23 bones called vertebrae. That’s about 10 percent of the total number of bones in a kitty’s body, wrapped by a group of muscles, tendons, and ligaments which explains that elusive and magnificent movement that cats do with their tails.
Now, let’s start with the different uses and facts of this magnificent tail. Here are five of the primary use and facts of a cat’s tail.
Sure we’ve heard that a cat’s tail is used primarily for balance. But how is it able to balance kitties? The answer, Counterweight! It provides a bit more weight at the back parts of your kitty making walking along narrow areas such as fences or the backrest of your chair very easy for them. Because of this counterweight, felines are also able to dash or run fast and quickly make a sharp turn when chasing down a favorite toy or perhaps, dinner.
Most of the communication that is being used by kitties depends on a lot of body language. The tail plays a major role in that, especially when communicating with a human. If you know “tail talk”, then you know how your kitty feels right away. If not, here are a few things that may get you started.
A happy kitty walks with the tail held high, for some cases, when your kitty is really happy, apart from the tail being held high, a quiver will also be formed at the tip of the tail.
When stalking prey or toy, the tail is being held low, not only to conceal the kitty’s presence but also to maintain balance while slowly making silent footsteps towards the prey…or toy. There are also instances that the tail may be twitching a little bit at the tip as a form of controlling kitty’s excitement.
An annoyed kitty will have the tip of the tail twitching. If the tail is moving back and forth like a whip, step away from that very instant, because what comes next is a sharp claw that’s ready to scratch.
The spinal cord of a kitty, which controls all movement and function of the body, does not extend all the way to the tip of the tail. But at the very tip of that spinal cord which is also where the tail starts, is what primarily controls the lower functions of the cat, namely, the tail, hind legs, bladder anus, and large intestine. Pulling a cat’s tail may cause partial paralysis, incontinence, or chronic pain. The same happens if extensive damage is done to the tail as this may cause serious nerve damage.
Cats can live without tails. They are very adaptable creatures and even if the tail is being surgically removed due to health reasons, they can easily compensate for the difference and change.
Proof that cats don’t always need their tails is that there are certain breeds that are born without tails. The Manx, for example, is famous for the unique tailless look.
With tail or no tail, what matters most is how we look after our kitties and how we get to know them. Your feline companion is a companion for life. Get to know them little by little and taking care of them will follow smoothly.
Meow for now… Kristian
As cat lovers, we tend to have feline instincts ourselves as well. Feline instincts to take photos of our feline friends and show the world just how cute and adorable our kitties are. I bet you’ve tried taking a picture of your kitty once or twice and noticed that it can be quite difficult, right? Cats have nothing to do with photo shoots and cameras. They just want to live their lives as they please. But fear not, here are a few things that you can bear in mind for you to be able to get that prized shot.
That is the number one virtue that you need to have when you think about taking pictures of your kitty. Patience! Sure, cats may just lounge around your house the entire day, but once the camera or phone is spotted, your feline friend may suddenly seem to be camera shy. Changing positions, covering the face with their paws, or even just walking away. But with patience, you will find that it truly is worth the wait.
Your kitty is the director of this photoshoot. Don’t choose the spots or scenery; let your feline friend do it. It’s a photo of her, so let her choose where she wants the picture taken. Snap a stealthy photo while kitty is comfortable, that way, by the time she notices the camera, you would have had an adorable picture of her already.
Bear in mind that great photographers would go through different positions to get that perfect snap shot. The same applies to this scenario. Drop on the floor and take a picture at your kitty’s eye level. Not only will this attract your kitty, but also, looking down on your kitty might distort the photo that you are trying to capture. Unless if that is your original intention.
Keep an Eye on the Background
Background changes everything. Sure, your kitty may be striking an awesome pose, but what about the dirty laundry behind that pose? Not all background stuff can be cropped or edited. Check online and you’ll see what I mean. An awesome feline doing an awesome pose deserves an awesome background.
Bribery is a Good Policy
Bribery can come in different forms for a cat. From treats to catnip, use anything within your arsenal that can catch the attention of your kitty and make her go the direction that you want her to. Just make sure that nothing can harm your kitty while doing this.
Two Heads are Better than One
It’s no easy task to dive into cat photography. So call a friend and two of you can work on it. One can distract kitty, while the other takes snaps of photos.
The use of flash photography can go two different ways. And none of them are easy. First, it may startle your cat which would leave a scar in your feline companion’s memory to avoid cameras. The other would be triggering your cat’s curiosity. When your cute ball of fur sees the flash, they can be attracted to it and once they get curious, it is really hard to stop them from investigating. This may get you good close up pics, but it would make lounging or portrait photos a tad more difficult. So avoid flash photography.
One of a Kind
Every cat is one of a kind. All are unique and have different preferences. For some cats, treats may work and get them to do cute poses, but it may not work for others. So don’t hesitate to experiment. Get to know your cat more while doing a photo shoot. This will draw both of you closer.
You know your cute furball better than anyone else. Doing a photoshoot will let the world know the beauty of the relationship you have with your kitty. Don’t be afraid to look weird. Cats do weird things to grab our attention, why don’t we do the same to grab theirs?
Meow for now… Kristian