National Answer Your
Cat's Question Day

at mercer and hughes veterinary surgeons

7 Things Your Cat Would Love You To Know!

1. Why wont my human feed me when I constantly meow around their feet in the kitchen! Don't they realise I'm starving - I havn't eaten for an hour!

No, you are almost certainly not starving and your human knows that. What you are doing is demonstrating perfectly the signs of being an OPPORTUNISTIC FEEDER. Its not your fault, its genetic. This is a bit of a throw back to when your ancestors were true wildcats a couple of thousand years ago. Then they had to take every opportunity to eat because they never knew when their next successful hunt and meal would be. Now as a domestic moggy your human feeds you regularly at least twice a day a good quality and correct amount of food. We know you are not starving, you are simply taking the opportunity to ask for food even though you are not actually hungry. We wont fall for it, no amount of those huge cute eyes will make us feed you more otherwise you may never fit through the catflap again.

2. Why does my human insist on touching my belly then get cross when I bite them and run away!

I know, they cant help it, you are just so cute when you roll on the floor and show them your belly. But they need to understand that you do this as a sign that you trust them and feel comfortable in their company, not because you want to be belly rubbed or tickled. In fact i know that is the last thing you want them to do because its an invasion of your trust and privacy which is why you get cross with them and run away. I know lots of cats do not like to be picked up for the same reason, and some even don’t like being stroked too much. I promise they wont do this again now they understand how you feel, instead they will be content knowing that you really enjoy being around them and trust them to be near you.

3. Why am I not allowed to scratch the furniture or carpet?

They should make sure you have something more appropriate to scratch. Some cats prefer vertical scratching like a post but often humans just don’t buy the right type. It needs to be big enough for you to stretch to your full height, and wide enough to give a nice flat surface. Other cats prefer horizontal scratching in which case those lovely big cardboard box scratchers can be more attractive than a carpet. Make sure your human puts them in the right place though, usually by doorways or at the end of furniture (like the end of a sofa) Humans think you only scratch things to sharpen your nails but i know you also do it to help yourself feel calm and to mark your smell around the house. Sometimes all the smells and different places in the house can be very confusing so to help you know where the correct place to scratch is your human could buy some FELISCRATCH and put it on the appropriate scratcher.

4. My human thinks I need a kitten to keep me company! I don't need a friend do i?

Your human is probably very worried that you might get bored and lonely while they are out at work all day and think a kitten will keep you company. What they may not realise is that cats are very solitary creatures and actually prefer living by their self rather than with other cats. They could provide you with lots of enrichment toys and puzzle feeders to give you something to do while they are out instead. Some cats can tolerate living with other cats but for some cats its terribly stressful and can lead to lots of behavioural challenges. They shouldn’t worry you will be lonely, you will be fine by yourself. If they insist on getting another cat then make sure they call us for advise on the best way to introduce you to each other and plug in a FELIWAY FRIEND.

5. My human keeps me indoors all the time and there isn't much to do. Help!

Lots of cats are kept as house cats and what your human needs to think about how to enrich your environment to make it more exciting. There are lots of different types of puzzle feeders they could put your biccies in to make you have to work for your food and provide lots of places to climb and hide in. They could grow you some cat grass and make natural toys to chase and chew like bird feathers. There are now lots of toys that move randomly on their own to get your attention and tunnels to jump in and out of. Some house cats can become bored, which leads to frustration which can lead to stress! Get them to look at these websites for inspiration!

6. Do I need to wear a collar?

So long as its a safety collar (one that breaks open easily if its caught) then wearing a collar is fine. Some humans prefer not to put collars on their cats in which case its really important you have a microchip implanted. This is a very quick, virtually painless procedure that only takes a few seconds as its injected into the scruff of your neck. That way if you ever got lost or injured and was taken into a vets we would be able to reunite you quickly with your human.

7. Why do I like eating grass if it makes me sick?

Hmmm, this is something we are not really sure of. We think its an inherited behaviour from when your ancestors were wild and had to eat all sorts of things like bones, feathers, gristle etc which could be really hard to digest. We think that eating grass was a way of helping them to throw up anything that was hard to digest. It seems our domesticated moggies still like to do this so it can be a good idea to make sure some cat grass is available especially if you are a house cat otherwise you may start eating house plants that could be toxic to you!

National Answer Your Cat’s Question Day!