For some cat owners, there is one other reason why picking up and cuddling cats feels so wonderful. It is a feeling of pride. It is a feeling of empowerment. It is a feeling of conquest.
It is feeling like a super villain!
It is very hard to deny the appeal of a calm and collected mastermind as he strokes his beloved, cat companion. Whether it is the Godfather Vito Corleone or James Bond’s #1 nemesis Ernst Stavro Blofeld, villains make a fine art out of stroking cats.
Fortunately, you do not really have to plan global domination to be as skillful as them. Here are five steps you can take to keep your cat content and comfortable in your own arms.
#1. Assess your cat’s trust in you.
If a cat is still getting accustomed to you as its owner, picking it up is not advised until it has developed a good amount of trust in your care. And even if it already has, always pay attention to how long it wants to be in your arms. Some cats have more independent personalities than others and wouldn’t want to stay held up too long. (That is, unless you give them good reason to.)
#2. Read its mood.
Just because a cat trusts you doesn’t mean you can pick it up more carelessly. Always check for signs of agitation and avoid touching it altogether if it looks like it is in a really bad mood. Be patient and do what you can to improve its demeanor. If villains themselves require appeasement, their feline friend demands no less!
#3. Remember your cat’s sweet spots.
All cats share a common set of areas that make them feel really good when stroked. These include the usual spots like the back of the ears, the chin and the base of the tail. Stroking these correctly can be a good way to keep a kitty content in your arms and less likely to squirm out of them.
#4. Determine a signature posture.
This goes both for you and your cat. Start by knowing the basics of holding it (such as supporting its bottom and hind legs). Patiently figure out when your cat is feeling most comfortable in your arms and adjust your posture accordingly. Sometimes it can be when you are sitting or when you are standing up right. Either way, it can feel really classy when you do it correctly.
#5. Let it know that you still have its attention.
Cats are naturally demanding and will obviously dislike it if they can no longer sense your attention when you are cuddling them. Occasionally make eye contact and know what part of its body you are rubbing at all times. Much like classic villains, it is crucial to avoid carelessness at all costs.
Lastly, remember that a cat is not a mere accessory. Ever notice that a villain’s cat is possibly the only thing they would never harm? You could say that they too acknowledge a cat as a living creature. It deserves to be treated as a faithful companion and your highest ranked accomplice!
A lot of people love cats no matter how messy or moody they can get. Most don’t mind because they simply adore their feline friends and they’re willing to accept the good and bad that’s hidden beneath their pretty furs. However, it wouldn’t hurt to know more about them.
There are some truly interesting facts that most of us don’t know about and we are truly missing out on all the fun. It’s best that we know more about our furry pals because this would let us understand them better. With that being said, here are some interesting facts about cats.
Number of Toes
You may, or may not, have noticed this, but cats have a different number of toes on their front and back paws. The front paws have five toes, while the back has four. However, there are polydactyl cats, which are cats who have extra toes on both of their paws.
Cats Don’t Have a Sweet Tooth
Cats have pretty much the same taste buds as ours, but some of their taste receptors aren’t as reactive and one of them are for sweets. Cats are obligate carnivores, which means they are compelled to consume meat. Since they’re inherently meat eaters, cats have no need for sweets and are unable to enjoy the sugary delights of cupcakes and other treats.
Years and Years of Bonding
You ever get that feeling that you’ve known your cat for a long time? The kind of feeling that you’ve somehow bonded years before? If you do, then it’s probably due to the fact that we have associated ourselves with cats for nearly 10,000 years now. This practically makes them a part of our social group.
Natural Born Hunters
A cats physiology is specifically designed for hunting. Their flexible bodies can squeeze through tiny spaces. Their teeth are also adapted for such, none of them having grinding surfaces, a clear indication that cats clearly evolved to eat meat. They also walk in a certain way that their back paws step almost exactly in the same place where did front paws landed. This minimizes the volume of noise their steps make, as well as the visible tracks they leave.
Quick on Their Feet
We have a general idea that cats are indeed agile creatures and are pretty fast. However, we don’t exactly know “how fast” they can get. To put this into perspective, the fastest man in the world, Usain Bolt, runs at 27 miles per hour. Your cat can actually run faster, as they can reach speeds of up to 30 miles per hour, easily grabbing the gold medal away from Bolt’s hands.
Although we already know that cats are indeed beautiful and amazing creatures, these facts remind us of how astonishing our purring pets are. This makes us appreciate them even more and be wowed by the fact that our usually sleepaholic companions are more than what meets the eyes. However, it’s kinda sad that they can’t taste sweet foods and that could be their kitty kryptonite.
Car rides for cats can be stressful. Imagine what it feels like to be taken away from a place you find familiar and comfortable and be transported in a big moving metal box. Car rides don’t have to feel traumatic for your cat, though. Here’s how you can train your kitty for car rides and make the overall experience relaxing and peaceful for both of you.
1. Get her in a carrier
First, you have to use her carrier to take her inside the car. It will keep you and your kitty safe from possible resistance that could happen.
2. Let her visit the inside of the car and let her mark it
Open the carrier inside the car and let her explore the car at her own pace. Don’t turn on the engine yet and definitely don’t force kitty to get out.
It will take time before she gets comfortable being inside the strange and unfamiliar vehicle. But, you have to wait until she does and eventually marks it. Then you’re done for the day.
3. Put something of hers in the car
To ease up the stress and speed up the process, put something of hers in the car overnight. When the next visit to the car comes, it will be less strange to her which can make her more relaxed compared to the first one.
4. Spend a little time with your kitty inside the car
By now your kitty has probably gotten used to the fact that a car isn’t necessarily dangerous or traumatising. Now, you start petting her (not too much) or talking to her. It helps to interact, but make sure to observe your kitty for near signs of aggression. Keep the environment relaxed and calm. Don’t put her in too long. About 5 minutes will do. And, you can do it again in the afternoon or the day after.
5. Meal time and car time
Now you top it up a notch. Try bringing your kitty in the car along with her favorite treats or catnip. The goal here is to make your kitty feel that cars aren’t about the bad stuff but also the good stuff. Food and toys are the best motivation for kitties to feel calm and relaxed. In this, your kitty will learn that happiness can be found inside the car too.
6. Take that first slow drive in the neighborhood
Now, that she feels good about getting inside the car. Try to start the engine. Initially, you’ll get a bit stressful reaction from your kitty but it’s fine. It’s part of the entire process. Don’t let the move yet. Just let the engine run for awhile and turn it off. Do this for about a week until she feels it’s normal.
After that feeding and playing, while the engine is on, it’s time to take your kitty to the neighborhood. Start with a slow speed and just show her what it’s like to be in a moving vehicle.
Now, that you have a kitty who’s interested in car rides. Next question is: where to?
Life is full of unexpected twists and turns. Despite our best efforts to plan, control and anticipate, we still get surprises and not all of them are pleasant. If you are going through a rough patch in your life right now, fret not! Take a cue from your feline friends who are equipped with superb survival skills:
Survival Tip #1: Always land on your feet.
One of the most remarkable things about cats is their ability to land on their feet. You’ve probably seen kitty do this trick after climbing up a tall shelf. Their unique physiological structure makes this possible (they have no collarbone and have an unusually flexible backbone).
What we can learn from this:
Of course, it is physically impossible for humans to follow this death-defying act but by principle to land on your feet means you are ready to rise after you fall. It doesn’t matter how many times you fall or fail as long as you get back up and keep moving forward.
Survival Tip #2: Enjoy every bite of your food.
Cats love eating fish and if you’ve seen your pet eat fish then you’ve seen that they take their precious time cleaning the meat off those tiny fishbones. Hyper focused and quiet, cats look like they are really enjoying every bite of their food.
What we can learn from this:
Enjoy the simple things. Don’t be so busy that you forget to enjoy the smell of your morning coffee or no longer have time to connect with your friends. Focus on the moment and enjoy what’s in front of you. Our cats show us that there is great joy to be found in the small things.
Survival Tip #3: Take care of your health and looks.
We all know cats spend hours licking their fur and grooming themselves. Naturally equipped to be master groomers, cats have a barbed tongue that cleans out dirt from their fur, paws to clean hard-to-reach areas and tiny teeth that can dig out smaller debris. Their knack for personal hygiene has earned them quite a reputation in the animal world.
What we can learn from this:
Invest in yourself. Eat healthy food, exercise and take care of your appearance. The way you feel about yourself impacts your self-confidence and your self-confidence is your best accessory.
Survival Tip #4: Don’t sacrifice sleep.
Cats sleep an average of 12 to 16 hours per day. That’s a lot of time spent snoozing! Don’t mistake them for lazy, though. Cats are crepuscular meaning they are most active in the hours between dusk and dawn so they sleep knowing they need energy for hunting, playing and moving around. Cats may sleep a lot but they definitely make the most of their time when they are awake!
What we can learn from this:
Follow your cat’s example and prioritise your sleep. Like cats you have a lot of things to do when you are awake so take time to rest. Don’t feel bad for taking a 15-minute power nap during the day or sleeping in during the weekend. Sleep is precious, it lets you recharge your cognitive batteries and helps your body recover from the daily demands of life.
You don’t need nine lives to overcome difficult situations. Get inspiration from our favorite furry friends and you’ll be able to get back on your feet in no time. If cats can do it, so can you!
“Every rose has its thorn.” And it’s important for us kitty owners to deal with these torn our cute and furry roses have.
A lot of owners turn to websites googling all these cat attacks. Before antagonizing these cute little creatures, it is important to know why they lashed out in the first place and learn to correct their bad behaviour.
They seek attention
If you’ve already been awakened by your cat very early in the morning with scratches and play bites, you already know what I’m talking about.
When you’re occupied, some kitties give a surprise attack. This isn’t because you’ve done them wrong, this is simply saying “notice me hooman!” Because it’s that or they could be doing something crazy in some place in the house.
Give them as much attention as you can because they’d love that. But if they attack, teach them a lesson by giving them the silent treatment. They will learn.
They want to play
Kitties are asleep for almost two-thirds of the day, mustering up great big ball of energy when they wake. And when they do, they will want to use it all up by doing a lot of playful (and weird) things which is why they can be aggressive at times.
The key to avoid their moodiness that can end up as a scratch or bit on your skin is to play with them. Give them a ball to play or that laser light. The key is to use up all their energy.
Cats are basically predators by nature. As they play, they also practice their predatorial tactics in the form of fun that may end up going too far. A study made by The Oatmeal indicated that one out of three kitties will want to hunt twice a week for and 49% tells us that’s the for the sole purpose of fun. Fret not, they don’t have the appetite for owners.
The key is to give them a toy they could play hunt with. May it be a mechanical mouse or a bell tied to a string, kitties always love a good chase.
They redirect aggression (scared and afraid)
When cats are not in the mood, interrupting their solitude may lead to them scratching or biting you. This isn’t because kitty is mad at you, it’s simply because they easily build up a lot of energy and tension that needs to be released.
Be mindful times like this. It is important to keep calm, pick them up wrapped in a towel and leave them in a safe and peaceful spot where they can calm down.
They want to mate
Even though kitties tend to show less aggression when spayed or neutered, their sexual instincts remain. During the tension, males grab females using their paws and females retaliate in the same manner. This reaction can occur when you stroke or hold them.
Dramatically reduce the number of strokes you give them and offer them a treat when this happens.
If you’ve noticed that your kitty is abnormally playful or aggressive, there must be something wrong. When they attack, it may be a good time go to the vet. Infection or aging problems may be the reason why they are so sensitive when touched.
Don’t let it reach an attack. If you notice an aggression that’s unusual to your kitty’s trait, schedule a check-up to a vet.
Meow for now… Kristian
Cats are fluffy balls of cuteness. Cat owners usually observe how much personality their pets have, they can act like aristocrats gracefully grooming themselves all day long or they can behave like the natural born hunters that they are and play with all kinds of moving things. This last one can get out of hand, though, and it’s not uncommon for kitty owners to feel exasperated when they see a shoe or the sofa in tatters all because their pet cat went full metal scratcher.
Why Does Your Cat Scratch?
Scratching is a natural behaviour of cats. They scratch when they are feeling playful. They scratch when they are stretching out. They scratch when they feel threatened. They scratch in order to mark their territory. Simply put, cats love to scratch. Unfortunately, we don’t love what this scratching does to us and our homes.
Scratching can ruin furniture and clothes. A scratchy kitty could traumatise other household pets and even children. Scratching can leave unsightly marks on our skin and, worst case scenario, the wound could get infected.
But don’t panic! There is a way to properly deal with this common kitty habit. But declawing your pet is not one of the options.
Why You Should Not Declaw Your Cat
Declawing is a permanent surgical procedure that involves amputating the toes of a cat up to the first joint. This method is a harsh and unacceptable way of treating or scratcher. These are the sad things that happen when you declaw your pet cat:
Declawing is irreversible and painful. It is not as simple as trimming a fingernail, it permanently changes the anatomy of your cat. Aside from the physical complications that might result from this procedure, declawing could cause behavioural and emotional problems in your pet. Imagine yourself being permanently injured and unable to function the way you used to. This is how distressing and traumatising this surgical procedure can be to your pet cat.
Balancing and Waking Becomes Difficult
Your cat’s claws are an important part of her anatomy. It helps with balance, movement and her day to day survival. Declawing your cat could lead to secondary contracture of the tendons. In simple terms, being declawed could interfere with her ability to walk and balance herself. Because the last joint of her paws has been removed, your cat might transfer more of her weight on her hindquarters causing her to be out of balance.
Cats rely on her claws to protect herself from threats like bigger animals and declawing leaves her defenceless to these dangers in the environment. Without her claws, your pet will feel insecure and distressed and these emotional disturbances could result in stressful behaviours like peeing in different places around the house and even hostility towards humans.
What You Can Do Instead
There are more effective ways to deal with your cat’s scratchy habits without resorting to declawing. Here are some of them:
- Put up a variety of scratching posts around the house
- Regularly trim your cat’s nails
- Discourage scratching by clapping your hands or squirting your cat with water when he attempts to scratch
- Protect objects and furniture with runners and other covers to discourage scratching
Meow for now… Kristian