Open-Plan Living Is Bad For Your Cat, According To Animal Expert

It may be the epitome of modern design, but open-plan living is bad for your cat. One expert explains just why this is a problem for your pet.

open-plan living is bad for your cat
Robert Tortorelli / Flickr

These days, many people opt for the ultra modern open-plan look in their homes. This minimal style is super popular these days and looks incredible. Still, when you’re designing your home, do you consider the needs of your pet? The truth of the matter may be that open-plan living is bad for your cat. Here’s what you need to know.

Animal experts recently spoke out about just this issue at an Animal Welfare Foundation seminar based in London, UK. The core idea was that open-plan homes mean extreme socialization for our cats. While that may not sound like such a bad thing at first, it could cause your pet to become anxious.

“While we may consider we are one big family, with our husbands and wives and our children, those cats might not consider those other cats or dogs as part of their same social group,” explained Sarah Ellis, of International Cat Care, at the seminar.

The fact that open-plan designs don’t allow for much privacy is the crux of the issue. You see, felines tend to prefer time alone. Unlike humans, they are not particularly social animals, spending much of their time in isolation or hunting by themselves. In an open living environment, though, there’s not much space for them to have some alone time.

That means that our cats can get seriously stressed out when forced to be around people or, indeed, other animals for too long. “Humans often like physical interactions that are high intensity and for longer durations,” explained Ellis. “Many of our pet cats find this need for high social interaction distressing.”

Oh, and it gets worse! While we all know that looking after your cat is key, Ellis had a warning for those with pets living in an open-plan home. She claimed that failing to meet the needs of your pet could quickly lead to what she termed ‘chronic negative emotions, chronic negative stress, human directed aggression and house soiling’. Yikes.

Needless to say that the last thing any of us want is for our cats to be stressed or depressed. So, what should you do to make sure that you tackle this issue? Well, even if you already have an open-plan living space, there are some hacks that may well help. Here are a few things that you may want to try for yourself and your cat:

  • Invest in boxes and cat houses

Your kitty may not be able to hide away in a room, and so you need to give them another option. You can get plain old cardboard boxes or even a cat house for your pet. As you know, cats love to sit in boxes! These small things may just make all the difference because they give your pet a space of their own.

  • Use room dividers

We know that open-plan living is bad for your cat, so making things a tad less open could be the answer. Most home stores sell affordable room dividers that you can put anywhere in your home. Simply sectioning off some of the areas could be the answer.

  • Use the height of your home

If you’re lucky enough to have high ceilings in your home, you have to make use of them for the good of your cat. You may want to get some shelves that your kitty can climb on or even just a tall cat tree. If your pet feels that they can escape above the room, the open-plan living will stress them less. Genius!

Do Cats Like When You Talk To Them? We Look at the Facts

When you’re home with your cat, nothing seems more natural than to have a good old chat to your kitty. So, do cats like when you talk to them?

When you’re home with your cat, nothing seems more natural than to have a good old chat to your kitty. So, do cats like when you talk to them
Frankieleon / Flickr

Whether we like to admit it or not, many of us love talking to our cats. When there’s no one else at home but your beloved pet, it makes sense that you would confide in them. One thing that all too many people wonder, though, is do cats like when you talk to them? Well, let’s take a look at the facts and see what we can find out right now.

First of all, before you worry that you’re the only one having full-blown chats with your kitty, there’s something you should know — we all do it. According to a 2015 study, a whopping 88% of people talk to their pet owners as though they are human. That’s an awful lot of us who sit around nattering to our animals. Weird, right?

Cats can identify their owner’s voice

While you’re talking, though, do you ever wonder whether your cat really cares? While they might not love you talking to them, they can certainly distinguish the sound of your voice from that of other people. Research from the University of Tokyo found that cats reacted differently when they heard their owner’s voice than they did when it was the sound of a stranger speaking.

There were actually small biological signs of recognition, such as the kitties’ eyes dilating and the like. That means that when you speak aloud, your cat knows that it is you who is talking. This may also explain why some felines get a tad spooked when you have guests; they notice the sound of a stranger’s voice, and so freak out.

They also respond to the pitch of your voice

Have you ever noticed the fact that cats seem to respond better to female voices than male ones? Well, the reason is simple. Felines can hear high-pitched voices much more easily than they can lower ones. That is to say that when a woman speaks, they are much more likely to react simply because they can hear the sound more clearly.

If you happen to have trouble getting your pet to acknowledge you when you speak to them, try speaking in a higher pitch. You may just find that this small, yet significant change to the way you talk makes all the difference.

Do cats like when you talk to them?

Once you’ve got your cat to respond to you, you may wonder whether they like it. Well, one interesting fact is that cats only meow to humans — this is not the way in which they communicate with one another. What that suggests is that, yes, they do enjoy us talking to them on some level. After all, why else would they attempt to communicate back with us?

Since our pets form an unbreakable bond with us from the moment we get them, it’s only natural that they would crave this form of interaction. Speaking to your cat is a way of acknowledging their existence and showing them that you really do care about them in a deep and meaningful way. What’s more, it’s a whole load of fun too!

Here’s Why Cats Always Love to Sit in Boxes, According to Science

Forget fancy cat treats, posts, or toys, there’s one thing that our feline friends love more than anything else. Boxes — cats just can’t resist them.

why do cats sit in boxes
Stephen Woods / Flickr

If you’ve ever got a delivery or moved home, you will have noticed just one simple thing. Your cat is obsessed with boxes. When they see them, they just can’t help themselves. Within the space of a few seconds, they will have jumped right in the box and there’s just no way you can get them out. Have you ever wondered why that is? Maybe you haven’t given it all that much thought in the past, but there’s a genuine reason that cats do this. Their love of cardboard boxes is no accident — it’s entirely innate to them.

So, why do cats love boxes so much?

It’s something that’s troubled many cat lovers for quite some time now. The very moment you bring a box into your home, your cat just cannot resist sitting in it. You may imagine that they are playing pretend like kids do, but that’s not the case at all. In fact, according to a recent study published in Applied Animal Behaviour Science, there’s a scientific reason that felines are attracted to boxes.

It all has a little something to do with stress. (Because, yes, cats do tend to get rather anxious and stressed out from time to time!) The researchers looked at cats that live in shelters. These creatures tend to be particularly stressed out much of the time since they have to share their environment with other felines.

The results were quite clear — when these cats had boxes to hide inside, their stress levels decreased at a dramatic rate. That suggests that our kitties use boxes a a way to escape the world and de-stress in a private place. Just like us humans need space from time to time, it’s logical that felines would need the same thing.

It’s all about evolution, baby!

Also, when you think about this from an evolutionary standpoint, it makes an awful lot of sense. When felines in the wild feel threatened (or stressed out), the best thing for them to do is find a hiding place. It’s an innate urge; something they just know they have to do. When it comes to domesticated cats, it’s only logical that they would mimic the same behavior. As the saying goes, you can take the cat out of the wild, but you can’t take the wild out of the cat!

Should you get your cat a box?

Well, the short answer is ‘yes’. Creating an environment in which your pet can be comfortable is essential to their happiness and well-being. That’s why you should absolutely make sure that your home is fit for them. You may want to include some cardboard boxes in your cat’s play area, for example. Failing that, there are many other things you could get for your cat.

If you don’t want to litter your home with a load of cardboard boxes, getting some cat furniture that allows them to hide away may be the answer. For example, you could invest in a cat home that offers them some space. There are loads of fantastic accessories you can get for your feline online so why not take a look and see what you can find? You know it makes sense! After all, this little extra could be just what your kitty needs to feel right at home.

Do Cats See In Color? We Look At How Our Kitty Cats See The World

We like to think our kitty cats see the world just as we do, but is that true? The one big question on everyone’s mind: Do cats see in color?

do cats see in color
Emilio Küffer / Flickr

How does your cat see the world? It may be something that you’ve never thought about before now, but perhaps you should. One of the things that many cat owners wonder about is do cats see in color? Well, it’s not actually a very simple question to answer, although it may sound it. The truth of the matter is that kitties see some colors but their vision is not exactly like ours is.

While that may sound a little complex right now, we will explain. You see, it’s all about how certain nerves in our eyes (and, indeed, the eyes of our felines) compute the information that they get from the outside world. When you look at something in front of you, you instantly take in a wealth of information. So, in theory, to understand this area, we first need to consider how our own eyes work on a day to day basis.

How do we see color?

To really understand what cats see when they look at the world around them, you need to know how we see color. It’s not merely enough to ask the question ‘do cats see color’, you need to think about what it really means to see and, indeed, understand what different colors are. So, how do we actually see color then?

Well, here’s the science. We humans have nerves in our eyes called ‘cones’. It is these nerves which allow us to see color and interpret what it actually is. When we look at something, different sensors inside the cones allow us to decipher which color each is.

Humans have three types of cone which means that we can see red, green, and blue with ease. Since we have many of these cones in our eyes, we can also see wide variations of these colors as well.

So, what is different about cats?

It may surprise you to find that cats also have three different types of cones. However, they have much less than we do in each eye. What that realistically means is that while they can see color, they don’t get as wide an array of colors as we might. That means that they see differences between the likes of red, blue, and green, but they don’t see the intrinsic differences between different tones and the like.

There’s another difference between cats’ vision and our eyesight. You may have noticed before now that your kitty has trouble seeing things that are particularly far away. There’s a good reason for that. Most cats are actually ‘near sighted’. That means that they can make out crisp, clear images when they are close to something, but not when they are far away from it. That can be tricky, especially when it comes to warding off predators and even hunting.

Cats see better in the dark!

While cats tend to lack color perception and struggle to see things that are far away, there’s one area of vision where they truly excel. When it comes to seeing in dim or darkly lit rooms or spaces, cats really are the masters. Their eyes have evolved to see a great deal in the dark, which means that they are able to hunt at night.

In this instant, color is not so important. The reason that cats have developed in this way is because they never needed to decipher different colors. Instead, they just needed to make out objects in the dark spaces around their home. In doing so, they can use their exceptional eyesight to win the upper hand at night time. In short, what they lack in color vision, they make up with their super cool night vision! Awesome.

Dogs Cost Twice As Much As Cats, According to Recent Study

If you’re a tad money-conscious, here’s another reason that being a ‘cat person’ is awesome — research shows it’s way cheaper to have a feline friend.

Dogs cost twice as much as cats
OTA Photos / Flickr

Since the dawn of time (um, probably) men and women have fought over just one fundamental question — are cats or dogs better pets? While we know the answer to that question without missing a beat (it’s 100% cats), we now have some proof to back that up. You see, if you happen to be conscious of your cash, there’s only one pet you ought to be investing in anytime soon.

According to a recent survey by UK-based Nationwide Home Insurance, the cost of owning a cat is just over half the cost of owning a dog in the first year. What that means is that people who own cats will save around £2,000 on their pet costs over the first 12 months of owning them. It might sound too good to be true, but here are the figure to prove it:

How much do dogs cost their owners?

As you may imagine, there are a whole load of costs associated with owning a dog. Pet lovers have to pay for everything from insurance and medical care to food and accessories. All of the above were taken into consideration in the Nationwide study and the results found that dog owners forked out a whopping average of £4,791 in the first year of getting the pet. Yikes. That’s a whole load of cash for a pup!

How much do cats cost their owners?

While, of course, there are similar costs associated with being a cat owner, it seems that our feline friends are far cheaper than dogs. In fact, according to the survey, cat owners spend around £2,445 on their kitties in the first year. Yes, you read that right. It costs UK cat owners about half the amount it costs dog owners to look after their pets.

So, why is that? Well, one of the reasons may be simply that cats are smaller. In general terms, felines eat less than dogs, their insurance is lower, and they need less than hounds do. It may sound overly-simplified, but sometimes, the most straightforward answer just so happens to be the right one too.

The verdict: Cats are the best pet!

What does all this information mean then? Well, when you look at the facts, it’s much more financially viable to own a cat than it is to own a dog. Not only are these pets beautiful, affectionate, and mysterious, but they also cost much less than yappy hounds. Brilliant!

Of course, before you rush out and buy a pet of any sort, you need to consider whether you can afford it. “Owning an animal can be extremely rewarding, but a very expensive experience,” explains Rob Angus, Nationwide’s head of general insurance. “Given a pet is for life, it’s important to plan ahead and budget for the potential costs involved, otherwise animal ownership could turn into a financial headache.”

So, what do you think? Are you pleased your kitty is super affordable to care for? Let us know in the comments section!

Forget ‘Crazy Cat Ladies’! Men Love Kitties Just As Much, According To UK Study

Cats are truly ‘man’s best friend’!

Men Love Kitty Cats
MaxPixel

We all know that cats are the cutest, most adorable pets on the planet. No one is denying that cold, hard fact anytime soon. The whole ‘crazy cat lady’ trope is that women are the ones that are obsessed with kitties. Well, that may not be the case. According to a new study, men like them just as much.

If you happen to be a cat owner, you will 100% get why people love these animals so very much. Throughout history, felines have been worshiped by virtually every civilization. From the Egyptians (who did literally worship them!) to people in the modern world who spend hours looking at pictures of them on the net, we’re all guilty of cat-loving.

Still, there’s one nasty little rumour that people love to throw about. Many people seem to be under the impression that having a cat as a pet is a solely feminine trait. After all, that’s where the whole ‘crazy cat lady’ idea comes from. But wait just a minute! Who says that men can’t love cats just as much as we do, eh? It just does not make any sense.

When you really think about it, there’s no real reason that men shouldn’t adore kitties as much as us women. They might say that a dog is a man’s best friend, but cats can be just as loyal, loving, and cuter than puppies. When you really think about it, there’s no reason that the saying shouldn’t be ‘cats are a man’s best friend’. Frankly, it has a smoother ring to it, if you ask us.

The results are in and, of course, cat ownership is on the up right now. But, rather surprisingly, it’s the men who are driving up the statistics. According to a study by the Pet Food Manufacturers’ Association, a whopping 17% of UK men now own a cat. You might not think that that percentage is all that high, but it’s rising at a fast rate.

In fact, just last year, the same survey found that a mere 13% of men had cats. What these new stats suggest is that, yes, more men than ever before are getting kitties as pets. Honestly, we could not be more excited about this news! The fact that more men are getting cats than ever is seriously exciting!

The Complete Guide To Moving Long Distance With Cats

Moving home can be a massive stress, not least for your cat. If you’re about to take the leap, here are some tips on moving long distance with cats.

moving long distance with cats
Jorbasa Fotografie / Flickr

Aside from divorce and death, moving home is one of the most stressful things that any of us will have to endure. From packing up all your worldly belongings to hiring a truck, there are a million little things that you just can’t forget. But wait just a minute. How on earth does this all affect your pet? Moving long distance with cats is anything but easy!

For one thing, many felines tend to suffer from anxiety when it comes to traveling. Remember, to them, this is something completely alien and new. It’s really no wonder that this strange experience will make them uncomfortable. What’s more, the last thing cats like is to be confined for long periods of time.

Basically, you’re in a lose-lose situation. It’s unlikely that this process will be easy, but if you have no other choice, you’ve come to the right place. Here’s the complete guide to moving long distance with cats. We honestly hope that it helps you along the way.

Do cats really like traveling?

First of all, let’s address the burning question on everyone’s mind. Do cats really like traveling? The short answer is no. If you’ve ever had to take your pet to a cattery or the vets, you will know that they don’t love going in vehicles or the like. The reason is simple; they hate being controlled. When you pop your cat in a carry case and then in the car, you have all the control and they know it.

So, with that in mind, you need to make this entire journey more comfortable for your cat. Consider their feelings at every feat. In doing so, you will ensure that they have as relaxed journey as they possibly can. Sure, it won’t be perfect (nothing ever is), but if you take note of our advice, you just may make things a little easier on you and your feline friend.

How to plan for the big move!

There will be a whole load of things that you need to plan for the move, as we’ve already mentioned. Taking your cat with you shouldn’t cause you too much extra stress, but you will need to factor them into your plans. Getting your feline checked over and seeing that they have all the right paperwork is absolutely essential. Here’s what you need to do:

  • Take a quick trip to the vet

You absolutely need to make sure that everything is up to date when it comes to your cat’s health. Head to the vet and talk to them about this issue. Be 100% transparent about what’s happening. Explain that you’re moving and want the full works for your kitty.

You will need to ensure that your cat’s shots are up to date and that they have the proper health certificates from the vet. If you happen to be flying with your pet, you will need these certificates before your animal can board the plane.

Not sure what your flying rights are? Here’s some information on the import and export rules: aphis.usda.gov/aphis/ourfocus/importexport

  • Take some cat supplies with you

It’s time to stock up on all the things that you will need for the journey. If you’re flying long haul or traveling across the country, you will be on your journey for a really long time. You may already have thought about what you will eat, but what about your cat?

When moving long distance with cats, you need to ensure that you have some snacks and food for them along the way. Take a bowl for food and one for water with you. You should also take cat treats and dry food for the trip. Water is seriously important to your cat’s health so make sure that they stay hydrated.

  • Consider your cat’s comfort

Think about it. How would you like to be cooped up in a box for hours on end? Well, you wouldn’t, would you? That’s why you want to make your cat’s carry case as comfortable as you can. Invest in quality blankets and cushions that will ensure that they are warm and cozy. Those extras will make the whole journey a little less stressful for your pet.

You should also think about your carry case itself. How long have you had it? Is it looking a little worse for wear? If it’s old and tatty, it may well be time to invest in a new one. The more spacious the carry case is, the happier your kitty will be on the trip. It really is that simple!

  • Make sure your cat is microchipped

It’s not that your cat’s going to run away during the trip, but you really do have to prepare for every eventuality. Getting the vet to microchip your kitty ahead of time means that your cat will be extra safe when it comes to traveling. Easy!

Flying across country with cats

Are you planning to fly with your cat? Well, then you’ve come to the right place. Moving long distance with cats is hard enough. When you put a flight into the equation, it can quickly turn into a seemingly impossible mission. Well, never fear. There are some easy things that you can do which will make the entire process much easier than you imagine.

  • Check what the airline regulations say

While there are many airlines that allow you to travel with pets, you need to make sure that you understand the rules. Most of the time, each airline will publish their own set of regulations when it comes to importing and exporting animals. You should be able to easily find this information on the company’s site.

If by chance, you are not able to find what you need online, a simple phone call is all it takes. Calling the airline ahead of time (even if you think you know what to do) could make all the difference. They will be able to tell you what size the carry case should be, what documents your pet needs, and what you need to do as well.

  • Make sure that you get a direct flight

The very last thing you want is to have to change flights with your pet. Heading from plane to plane is nothing short of a nightmare. Your cat will find these changes distressing and it will most likely make them anxious for the rest of the journey.

Whenever possible, you should try to make sure that you book a direct flight for your move. Sure, it may cost you a little more when you buy the tickets, but you honestly cannot put a price on your cat’s happiness… and your sanity!

  • Get your carry case ready

Sadly, your cat will not be sitting with you on the plane. Nope, they will be in the luggage section. You need to make sure that you label the carry case with a large, bold note that says ‘Live Animal’ on it. You should also be sure to tape some food to the case so that the airline staff can feed your cat should there be a long stopover somewhere.

  • Don’t put a lock on the case

While your instinct may be to lock the case, it’s the last thing you should do. When moving long distance with cats, you need to prepare for every eventuality. If there’s an emergency on the plane, the staff will need to get your kitty out of their case. Sure, you should close the case, but avoid putting a lock on it at all costs.

  • Try to relax

Traveling with your cat can be stressful, but the more you worry, the worse it will be. Try to stay calm during the flight. The airline staff deal with live animals on board all the time and they will know just what to do. All you need to do right now is relax and enjoy the flight.

Moving long distance with cats by car

Flying is one thing, but what if you plan to drive to your new home? Well, car travel can actually be very stressful for your cat, and so you need to take precautions. Here are just a few things that you need to ensure you do:

  • Make sure your cat has what they need

We’ve already talked about taking things like food and blankets for your cat. Unfortunately, there’s one other little thing your cat will need. You should line the case with some newspaper in case your cat has any little ‘accidents’ on the journey.

It may also be a good idea to take a cat leash along with you. That way, when you stop the car to stretch your legs a little, you can let your kitty do the same. This will give them a chance to relieve themselves and stretch out.

If your cat seems distressed when you first put them on the leash, don’t try again. It may be that all the moving around is causing them anxiety and you don’t want to make it worse.

  • Book pet-friendly hotels along the way

If you plan on driving right across the country, it’s sensible to take breaks and even stay somewhere overnight. Before your trip, take a look at stop-off points along the way where you, your family, and your cat can relax. Instead of driving for hours and hours on end, try this handy tip! It’s well worth looking for some pet-friendly hotels where you can all get some much-needed sleep.

Looking for a pet-friendly hotel when considering moving long distance with cats? Take a look at this site where you can find cat friendly hotels: hotels.petswelcome.com

  • Keep the car as quiet as possible

It’s not enough that your cat is traveling somewhere new; everything around them could make them anxious. If you’re talking loudly in the car or have the radio on full blast, that will only add to the problem in more ways than you realize right now.

When you’re in the car, you always have to be conscious of how your cat is feeling. Any loud or excessive noise is certain to make them more stressed out than ever. Of course, you can’t control how noisy the car is, but you can control how noisy you are.

  • Pay attention to your cat

The best case scenario is that your cat falls right asleep when you put them in the case and stays that way for the entire journey. But, let’s be honest here, that’s so not going to happen. It’s far more likely that they will demand your attention throughout the journey. Give it them.

Remember, your cat is feeling worried and doesn’t know what’s going on here. They need comfort, love, and support right now. They need assurance that everything is going to be okay in the end. If you’re the one that’s driving, have someone else comfort your cat.

  • Avoid leaving your cat on their own

Finally, when you stop-off for a break, don’t leave your cat by themselves. As we’ve already mentioned, your cat will likely be anxious and worried right now. If you leave them alone, they could well panic! Have one member of the family stay with your cat (and reassure them) at all times. This little trick should help keep your kitty calm and content. Phew!

So, what do you think? Are these tips helpful for moving long distance with cats? Have you got any you’d like to share with us? We’d love to hear them! Leave us a COMMENT below and let us know.

The Complete Guide To Caring for Newborn Kittens and their Mother

Congrats! You’ve got a family of kittens! It’s an exciting time. Here’s everything you should know about caring for newborn kittens and their mother.

caring for newborn kittens and their mother
Jeanne Menjoulet / Flickr

There’s nothing like the pure joy you feel when your cat becomes a mother. At this special time, it’s all very new and exciting. Suddenly, your home is overrun with baby kittens everywhere. Frankly, it can be a whole load to take in. You might find that the change in lifestyle is a bit much when you first start out. Don’t worry. Caring for newborn kittens and their mother doesn’t have to be a chore. If anything, it should be nothing short of a true pleasure. Yep, you get to look after some of the cutest little animals ever! Here’s what you need to know.

Make sure the cats have privacy!

As any mother would be, your cat is likely to be kind of protective over her young. These kittens are her babies, and so she’s going to want to look after them on her own. That means that you need to give her and the little ones some privacy now and then. Give them the space that they need so that they can nurse and relax. You might want to give them a room of their own where they can all be together as a family. Failing that, set up a quiet corner in one of the rooms in your home. Leave the kitten and momma alone whenever you can so as not to hassle them. Trust us, doing so will make a world of difference.

Keep everything as clean as possible

Sadly, newborn kittens are prone to infection and the like. They are still very young and in their developmental stages. That’s why germs and bacteria can be so very harmful to them right now. The last thing you want or need is for them to catch a virus or the like. So, how can you avoid this awful problem? Well, one of the things that you should try is keeping the home environment as clean as can be. That means regularly washing things that the cats come into contact with on a regular basis. From their baskets to the carpet, you want to ensure that everything is in tip-top condition. When you’re caring for newborn kittens and their mother, this is rule number one, after all.

Make sure that there is plenty of fresh water

While the kittens will be getting their nutrients from the momma cat, you need to provide them with one vital thing; water. They need fresh water as often as possible. You should never underestimate the thirst of these little cats. They are full of energy and life right now. That means that they also need as much water as they can possible drink. You may need to change their water bowl about two or three times per day. This may seem time-consuming and, frankly, a little over the top, but you have to do it. You see, water can get dirty very fast, especially when there are loads of animals around. The fresher the drinking water is, the healthier your newborn kittens will be. If you remember that golden rule, you should be just fine.

Sort out fleas as soon as possible

Eek! Unfortunately, kittens are often prone to something called ‘flea anemia’ which is a very serious condition. You should make sure that you get rid of fleas the moment you spot them. If you see them on momma cat or the kittens, you need to get a treatment right away. Your vet will be able to advise you on the best treatment for your cat, and so you should have no problem getting the right one. Remember, you will need to wash all the bedding, rugs, and carpets of your home when your kittens have fleas. Those little bugs (and their eggs!) can get everywhere. You can get flea powder that you sprinkle around your home at most pet stores. That stuff should kill the bugs off in no time at all.

Handle the kittens when they are young

Handling the kittens when they are young is absolutely essential. The truth of the matter is that cats need to be socialized at a very young age or you run the risk of them becoming scared around people. Remember, momma cat will not love you handling the kittens the first time around. You have to be as slow and gentle as possible with the little ones to show that you are not a threat to them. Hold and pet each in turn so that they can see that you are friend not foe. Doing so will mean that they grow up to be calm around people, rather than fearful of them! Good luck, fellow cat lovers.

Hope you think of this guide to caring for newborn kittens and their mother next time you welcome a few new little kitty members to the family!

How to Introduce a Cat to a Dog (Without them Fighting)!

So you’ve got a new cat and can’t wait to bring them home, right? Well, there’s just one problem; your dog. Here’s how to introduce a cat to a dog.

how to introduce a cat to a dog
Katlene Niven / Flickr

If you’re an animal lover, you may want as many pets as you can physically have. There’s a few issues with that, though. You see, not all animals get on. Not by any means. In fact, there’s some truth in that old saying; “fighting like cats and dogs”. If you’re hoping to introduce these two creatures, you’ve thankfully come to the right place. Here’s how to introduce a cat to a dog without them getting upset, anxious, or, indeed, fighting!

Hint: Things you should consider first!

Before you even think about getting another pet, there are a couple of things that you honestly need to consider. First of all, you need to be absolutely certain that you have room for both a cat and dog in your home. If you have a small living space, take the time to really think about how things will pan out. Where will the animals sleep? Will they have their own space in the home? If the answer is no, you may want to reconsider getting an extra pet after all. As sad as it may be, the truth of the matter is that both of your pets’ welfare is the most important thing here.

The second, an equally important thing you should think about is what personality your original pet has. For example, if you already have a pup, are they shy or nervous? Are they angry and aggressive? If you already have a cat, do they like their own space? Before you consider how to introduce a cat to a dog, you need to think about how the animals themselves will react. You know your pets better than anyone else, and so you’re best qualified to answer these burning questions.

Separate the animals for a few days

When you first bring the cat or dog home, you will need to separate them from the other animal. There is just no sense in rocking the boat too soon. Trust us, doing so will lead to disaster and it’s the last thing that you actually need. Instead, you should separate the two animals for just a few days. Keep them in separate rooms and rotate them now and then. That way, they will get used to the scent of one another without actually meeting! That means that when they do come face to face, it won’t be such a massive shock.

Remember, scent is highly important to animals; it’s how they get to know one another. Exposing them to one another’s scent in this simple and straightforward way should make all the difference and mean that the two of them feel comfortable on the initial meeting. The best case scenario is that they both get comfortable with the smell of one another, and so the fear factor goes away. Simple.

Keep your pets on leashes!

Okay, when the actual introduction happens, you should keep both animals on a leash. Doing so means that you have 100% control over the situation. Remember, you have no idea how each of the animals will react here. There’s likely to be a whole load of fear and worry. One (or even both!) of your pets is likely to panic. The fact that you have a hold of them means that they can’t attack or run after one another. Instead, you can keep them at an arm’s length away from each other. That distance should give both of them the space to survey one another without being too threatened.

When it comes to how to introduce a cat to a dog, you need to remember, that these two animals are territorial. Neither one will one to give up their power. Your resident pet may feel highly threatened by the introduction of a new animal. For that reason alone, you can expect a whole load of trouble. Patience is key. The calmer and more patient you are, the smoother this whole thing will be.

Watch out for the telltale signs

You will likely have to have a fair few ‘leashed’ interactions between these two animals before they can be off the leash together. Be as patient as you can. What you need to do is look for the signs that they are happy with one another before you allow them off the leads. So, what are the things that you need to watch out for?

Well, one of the main signs that the two are content in one another’s company is that they appear relaxed. Rather than being on edge or looking stressed, your animals may sit down and chill out a little. If you see them looking away from one another, it means that they are no longer threatened in a serious way. (Because, as we know, animals focus on those who they feel threaten them!) When your pets can sit in the same room without hissing, growling, or staring intently at one another, they might be ready to be let off the lead!

Warning: If your animals appear anxious, stressed, or indeed aggressive, you should not leave them alone together. These pets are prone to fighting and that’s something you want to avoid at all costs.

Where to Pet Your Cat to Make Them Happy as Larry!

We all want to pet and cuddle our cats now and then, but how can we be sure they actually like it? Here’s where to pet your cat to keep them happy.

Where to Pet Your Cat
Adam Heath / Flickr

When you get home from a long day at work, there’s just one scamp that you look forward to seeing again and again. Having a cat waiting at home for you is one of the best feelings in the world. The very first thing that you’re going to want to do when you walk through the door is go ahead and give them a massive cuddle. After all, they really do deserve it! Still, there are some places that kitties just don’t like to be touched. If you want to make them love you and feel secure, here’s where to pet your cat. You’re welcome.

Under the chin

Around the jawbone area and under your cat’s chin, you will find that there are a whole load of nerves. That means that your cat will really love a cuddle here. You need to make sure that you start off as soft as possible. You don’t know how sensitive your pet is and the very last thing that you want to do is alarm them. Start with one or two fingers and gently rub just beneath the chin area. As you do so, make sure that you watch your cat’s reaction. If they like it, they will likely lift their chin upward so that you can really get in them and give them some love.

Behind their ears

Another place that some cat lovers tend to neglect is just behind the ears. Here, your cat has a whole load of fur which means that they can often get quite itchy from time to time. By stroking this area, you are relieving the itch for your cat and giving them some much needed comfort. Often, you will find that your pet lets you know where they want to be cuddled. They may present a certain area to you or show you where to pet your cat in a way. Be sure to pay close attention to them to see what they do. That way, you can be certain that they will be happy and content with you.

Around the cheek area

You should really be focusing on the head area when it comes to petting your cat. Felines like to know that they are in control and they need to see your hands much of the time. That’s why they feel most comfortable with you scratching around their cheeks and giving them a big old rub there. Again, this area might be quite fluffy, and so you will also help them to relieve any itches that they may have there too. When your pet likes having their cheeks rubbed, they will crane their neck forward to let you know about it. That little sign is one that you want to watch out for when cuddling. It means that you’re doing a seriously great job!

On the forehead

Tracing the line of your cat’s forehead with your fingers is a cute way to show them just a little affection. After that, you might want to move things up a scale and go for the whole hand. Remember, you don’t want to be too rough with your cat. Kitties can be quite precious about the way that you touch them (unlike dogs!), and so the more sensitive you are, the better they will enjoy the attention. When considering where to pet your cat, you should also think about how hard or soft you need to stroke them.

Down their spine

If you want to go in for a big cuddle, this is what you need to do. Cats like a strong hand running down their back or spine. Be sure to be firm but not press down too hard (or you could run the risk of hurting them!). What you really want to do is start from their head and move your hand backward quickly. If your kitty likes this, they will arch their back. Watch out for this telltale sign as it signifies the fact that your cat is enjoying the affection and would like a little more.

Warning! Avoid the tale and tummy

Now that we’ve covered where to pet your cat, there’s one other thing that we need to mention. There are actually a couple of places that your cat will hate you touching. Of course, you need to avoid these areas at all costs, unless you watch to get scratched and hissed at! It’s important that you take note of what your cat likes and dislikes. While all felines are different, you can use these hints as general rules.

You should always avoid the tummy area as this place is often too sensitive to be cuddled at all. Felines tend to want to protect their stomach at all costs and the last thing you want to do is take that away from them. You should also never play with your cat’s tale. As tempting as it may be, this is uncomfortable for your kitty and they will not like it!