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December 10, 2018

Best Cat Carriers for Veterinarian Visits

01.25.15 Vet visits are notoriously stressful for cats and people. The best cat carriers for veterinarian visits are hard shelled with detachable tops. Tops are easily removed, allowing veterinarians to do partial and sometimes complete exams while the cats are still in their carriers.

For lively discussions about cat behavior, please check out The Cat Coach on Facebook.

Make Cat Carriers Fun for Cats

Cats can be persuaded without being stressed or traumatized to willingly go into their carriers. Start by keeping the carrier out at all times—your cat will become used to it. Than encourage her to hang out in it by giving her treats and playing with her in it. Place an article of clothing with your scent on it in the carrier to help reassure her that it is not a scary place. Make cat carriers fun for cats.

Leave cat carriers out.

Leave cat carriers out. by Marilyn Krieger, CCBC.

For lively discussions about cats and behavior, please check out The Cat Coach on Facebook.

Jacobson Organ

01.11.15 Cats have a couple of organs that allow them to smell odors. One is the nose. The other is the Jacobson organ, also referred to as the vomeronasal organ, located in the hard palates of mouths. It is used for primarily smelling pheromones as well as other odors. Your cat isn’t just making a funny face when she is grimacing, wrinkling her muzzle and opening her mouth—she is flehmening, opening the passage that leads to the organ in order to sample specific odors.

Cat flehmening

Cat Flehmening by Shutterstock.

For lively discussions about cats and behavior, please check out The Cat Coach on Facebook.

Some Cats Eat and Drink with Their Paws

01.04.15  Some cats eat and drink with their paws; scooping food and water from their bowls before eating. The bowls may be too narrow and deep or in poor locations. Whiskers, with their own nerves and blood supply, are sensitive. Some cats are bothered by the sensation of their whiskers touching the sides. It is also difficult for cats to see possible threats when they are eating out of deep bowls. Bowls should be shallow and wide so that whiskers don’t touch the sides and views aren’t obstructed. Locations matter too. Cats need to feel safe while eating. Place bowls in quiet areas, away from other resident animals and threats; in places kitties can see and escape possible threats.

For lively discussions about cat behavior, please check out The Cat Coach on Facebook.

The Right Way to Greet Cats

12.28.14  The right way to greet cats. Instead of approaching or cornering the cat, position your index finger about 8” above the ground and point it towards her. She may be as close as a couple of feet from you or across the street. If she wants to socialize, she’ll approach you and touch your finger with her nose. Then she’ll turn her head until your finger is on her cheek. She will probably rub your finger and hand, marking you with pheromones produced by scent glands located on her cheeks. This is your invitation to pet her.

Maulee, the author’s cat, greeting her.

Maulee, the author’s cat, greeting her. by Marilyn Krieger.

For lively discussions about cat behavior, please check out The Cat Coach on Facebook.

Opening Holiday Presents with Cats

12.21.14 Opening holiday presents are fun for everyone—including the family cats. Keep an eye on your cats and kittens during the festivities. Make sure they do not become tangled in ribbons or other wrappings. Don’t let them play with fragile ornaments or small objects that can easily be chewed up or swallowed. Place candy, cookies and other food in areas that are inaccessible to your cats.

Are Cats Good Christmas Presents?

Not everyone can provide good homes for cats and other pets. In addition to the costs for food and vet care, they need daily attention, clean litter boxes, love and a safe environment. Instead of surprising someone with a cat for Christmas, get their feedback. Not everyone is ready for the responsibilities that comes with living with cats. If they are good candidates, take them to the shelter or a responsible breeder and let them meet and choose the cat they connect with. Many cats and dogs are abandoned and surrendered to shelters after the holidays because people thought they’d make good presents.

 

Christmas Tree Pet Safety Tip

12.07.14 It is common for people to keep Christmas trees fresh during the holiday season by placing them in stands filled with water. Christmas tree water is toxic for animals. It contains phenols from the tree, fire retardants as well as preservatives. Help keep your pets safe by investing in a Christmas tree stand that has a covered reservoir which makes the water 100% inaccessible to all of your resident animals. Keep this Christmas tree pet safety tip in mind when trimming your tree.

Holiday Plants and Cats

11.30.14  Most holiday plants are toxic to cats. They can kill or cause painful intestinal upsets if swallowed. Poisonous plants include: Mistletoe, Poinsettia, Holly, Bittersweet, Boxwood, Lilies and Christmas trees. In addition to commercial Xmas trees being sprayed with poisonous fire retardant, pine is toxic and the needles can pierce intestines and cause other injuries. Always monitor cats around live holiday plants and Xmas trees. Or, invest in fake. Fake plants last for years, don’t need to be watered and most are safe for cats.

Cat Kisses

11.23.14  Cats often show trust, relaxation and affection to their people and other cats through slowly blinking with half closed eyes. This action is referred to as cat kisses. People, mimicking cat kisses can also communicate to felines that they feel relaxed and trusting around them. Depending on the circumstances and the individual cats, their messages of contentment can elicit similar responses from kitties.

Asia, a happy, contented cat

Asia, a happy, contented cat