Intro: What affects your cats’ behaviour?
Sarah Heath, leading cat behaviourist, believes that diet/nutrition and environmental influences are the main influencing factors of cat behaviour.
It is therefore important not to feed our cats dog food because cats and dogs have different nutritional requirements. In some situations where cats are fed inappropriate food, making them incapable of synthesizing some food nutrients, cats’ health may be affected (a common example is what is known as taurine deficiency, vital nutrient for your cats’ sight). A less obvious example, is when cats are fed cat food which once again is not suitable for the specific cat, something that it can irritate your cat and you will notice changes in its behaviour through the course of the day. To give you an example, my cat Kenza cannot stand chicken or tuna pouches, whilst Mya will never eat Whiskas dry food.
Your cats behaviour can be affected from the environment around it but also by its breed. For example Burmese cats tend to be more demanding. Furthermore, lack of challenge, aggression, other pet’s behaviour (around the cat), change of environment/owner, lack of affection, and the like, can also affect our cats’ behaviour.
Why does my cat bite me?
It can be very distressing and upsetting when our cat becomes aggressive towards us. It is even strange when our cat comes close to us asking to be stroked and then all of the sudden it turns to bite us. I read a lot about this issue as my cat Kenza reacted in the same way for many months. Some experts say that cats can have attention deficiency disorders (meaning they asked to be pet and then they get annoyed or bored) or they don’t like to be touched on a particular part of their body.
You will also notice that after the attack even if the owner does not react, the cat will jump off your lap or sofa in a panic and then it will start grooming itself. This is known as the ‘petting and biting syndrome’. Different cats have a different tolerance threshold, which make them react aggressively when they feel vulnerable or trapped. This is usually associated with the cat’s past or early associations with humans. It took Kenza a year to be able to trust me to pick her up and enjoy being pet without reacting aggressively.
Another reason would be the way be stroke our cat, because grooming is an important and a calming factor in their lives. It is therefore important to stroke your cat calmly and also try to slowly increase their tolerance threshold.
Why does my cat bite me when I groom her?
This can be pain associated aggression that can be caused if your cats has knots or matted fur or the cat may associate the comb with a painful experience. One solution is to take your cat to a vet so that its fur can be de-matted under anesthetic and then continue grooming it on a daily basis. Don’t wait until your cat associates grooming with a painful experience as this can lead into a stressful experience both for the owner and for the cat. Another solution would be to have your cat clipped in the case of long haired cats. In all cases always make sure that you make your cat feel safe at all times when you interact with it.
Why does my cat rub its chin on different objects in the house?
You will notice your cat rubbing itself on the leg of the table, end of a wall, against our feet and hands or even on the floor. This partly to satisfy its need for touch but also to leave a mark of its scent and thus territory and friends.
Why does my cat eat our house plants?
Cats enjoy eating plants and grass for two main reasons. Plants contain some minerals and vitamins not available in other foods and also have emetic properties that can aid the cat to get rid of hairballs from their digestive track. If you want to discourage this behaviour you can either spray the plants with a safe pet repellent or use aversion techniques such as spray your cat with some water to associate eating a specific plant with an unpleasant experience.
Why does my cat vomit continuously?
Even though it is not uncommon for a cat to vomit occasionally, (especially since this is a way for them to get rid of unwanted hairballs) but it can be alarming if this is a continuous or regular happening. If your cat vomits occasionally it could be an indication that the cat is under a lot of stress (this could be caused by another animal, situation) and by vomiting the cat can relieve some of the pressures or tensions. However, visit your vet immediately if your cats is sick regularly as it could be a health disorder or even a symptom of consumption of a poisonous substance.
Why does my cat scratch my furniture?
When a cat scratches the sofa, door, tree it removes the old nails from its claws and sharpens the new tips. By doing so it also secretes a scent that marks the cat’s territory. When other cats are around then the cat is signaling their self confidence and dominance
Why does my cat spray on my new carpet?
Cats don’t like change so bringing something new into their lives, makes them look for ways to bring things back to normal. By spraying their smell on the new carpet or furniture it offers them some sort of familiarity.
Why does my cat sit on my book while i’m reading/ Why does my cat rub its chin on my laptop screen while i’m working?
Cats react this way when they want to grab your attention in a need to share affection. This is for example another way to come closer to you. I am sure you noticed your cat lying on your bed, pillow, freshly ironed and cleaned clothes.
Why does my cat spray? Cats Spraying and What You Must Avoid at All Costs
But, what do you do when your cat sprays inappropriately? Especially when they have never had trouble with spraying before?
This is a tough question because the cause for spraying can occur for different reasons, perhaps your cat has an infection or she (or he) does not like a change that has occurred in your home. Before you get desperate over your cats spraying your carpets, shoes and clothing, perhaps you should ensure that you have avoided all of these things first.
One of the most common reason for cats spraying all of a sudden, is the fact that you have moved their litter box. Perhaps you only intended on moving it for a day or two because you didn’t want guests tripping over it in the bathroom, or maybe you thought a different place would simply be better, but the bottom line is that cats love consistency.
As such, if you have moved the litter box, it is entirely possible that you have changed it to a place that is not agreeable with your cat. If it is necessary to make the move, then ensure you don’t place the litter box in a room that the cat is uncomfortable with and also ensure that it is not near your cats food and water.
Another thing to avoid is changing your cat’s kitty litter. Now, this may seem like a small thing to you, but again, cats prefer consistency and will not like it if you make a change. Cats particularly do not like the smell of citrus and cats may not use the litter box if you use a kitty litter that has a citrus base to eliminate smells.
Lastly, at all costs you should not ignore the possibility that this is a medical problem. Cats may spray because they have an infection of some kind.
Take your cat to the vet, especially if you have not made any other changes in your home to ensure that he or she is healthy. You do not want to ignore this problem only to find out a simple treatment could have stopped your cat from spraying.
There, you’ll discover many easy ways to stop cat from spraying for good, without expensive training aids.
Your cat chewing away all your plants.
These are all things that can happen, and most likely WILL if you are living with an untrained cat in your house. The damage a cat can make can raise to thousands of dollars! You wouldn’t imagine what a little furry thing can do left home alone.
Unfortunately this is what many people can go through. Not many people know how to train their cat properly, and there is lot of mis-information on the Internet. It’s unfortunate that the right information about cat training hasn’t spread enough on the internet and this makes not only cat owners suffer, but also their beloved cat.
Fortunately for you I’m about to share a secret about cats, that can completely change the way you view them. Yes, actually it’s very basic, and any good cat trainer ought to know this, but not many do.
The secret is: Reward-Response Training.
You see, not many people know that their cats won’t respond to punishment, the way dogs do. Cats have no idea why you are punishing them for. That little difference, is actually a big difference if you think about it. It changes the whole training dynamic.
What you need to do now, is only reward your cat WHEN he does what you want him to do, and never punish him when he doesn’t do what you want him to do.
So how do you reward your cat? Well, every time he does something positive, like using the litter box, staying with the leash on, coming when you’re calling him give him a special treat and pet him for good behavior.
You see cats can be very pleasant pets, and living with a cat under the same roof peacefully doesn’t have to be a fantasy or something you see on TV. Many people see how cute cats are, on TV, and when they try to get one they struggle with his training and allow their cat to actually dominate their life. Actually that is why some people don’t like cats, it’s because they don’t understand them. They think cats are aloof and not-trainable, but that isn’t necessarily true. While it may be true that cats are independent creatures and can be aloof at times, they are certainly trainable, but only with the RIGHT information.
You can train your cat, if you have the right information. Most people don’t know this, and those who do know, try to train their cat with punishment, which is a very bad choice, for you and your cat. It can make kitty fear you and run away from you. Then when you try to pet him, he might scratch you. So don’t even think of punishing you cat. Get the right information about training cats and start applying what you learn as soon as possible. But also make sure you have the respect of your cat. Without the respect of your cat your cat training attempts are done in vain. This can be done by avoiding most mistakes that most cat owners do, but also you can find a special technique for doing this at my website.