Few companion animals are as captivating as the wonderfully delightful housecat. Their beauty, grace, and mysterious nature draws us to them, even if they don’t always return our affection when or how we want them to. Cat behavior is certainly perplexing, but by making a concerted effort to deepen our understanding of their instincts and desires, we can improve our relationships with them and create happier, more harmonious lives together.
Cat Behavior: Body Language
Cat behavior can range from cute to puzzling to downright annoying. It can be challenging to interpret what our cats want, but paying attention to their body language can give us clues as to what they’re thinking. Cats tend to show their affection for humans through head butting, twitching their tails, or rubbing their cheeks or bodies against us. Meowing is generally reserved for communication with humans and may signal hunger, happiness, or a desire to play. Continue…
Traveling with pets can be challenging, requiring a whole new set of preparations and safety precautions. Yet, on the other hand, the thought of leaving a beloved friend in the care of someone else can stir up feelings of worry, fear, and guilt.
In an ideal world, we’d never have to leave our pets behind when we have to travel, and many cat owners struggle with what to do with their beloved felines when they have to be away from home.
For the Love of Cats
Here at Lone Tree Veterinary Medical Center, with our beautiful, new Cat Boarding Lodge, we’ve created a very special place for cats, so you don’t have to worry about your feline friend while you’re away. Whether you’re leaving your special companion for a short or long stay, you can rest assured that your sweet kitty will be receiving the absolute best care with us. Continue…
When people see our new, beautiful Cat Lodge, they’re pretty impressed! With its sleek condo spaces, stunning wall murals reflecting Colorado mountainscapes, custom built cat trees made from real aspen and spruce, and a colorful and entertaining fish tank, we couldn’t be happier to show it off!
Whether cats should be declawed or not has become a hot-button issue in recent years. As a result, the declawing of cats has been banned in more than a dozen countries and in several California cities, and a bill is currently being considered that would make New York the first state to outlaw the procedure. The surgery is currently legal in Colorado, although attempts have been made to introduce legislation that would ban the procedure to declaw a cat.
The American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA) has taken the stance that declawing is not a medically necessary procedure, but that it can be beneficial in instances where the cat would otherwise be given up for adoption, or when the owners are immunocompromised and cannot risk being scratched.
The AVMA and the staff here at Lone Tree Veterinary Medical Center agree that, before making a decision, cat owners should be fully educated on normal cat scratching behavior and alternatives to the declaw procedure, as well as the risks involved. Our medical team works diligently to help cat owners with these alternatives. In the rare situation where all alternatives have been tried over time and have failed, in order to keep a cat in its forever home or avoid euthanasia, our veterinarians will provide the procedure.
Anyone who has witnessed an indoor cat looking out the window or lying in wait near the front door for any chance to slip outside, knows that cats are curious about the outdoors. Many pet owners would love to give their cats the outdoor experience, but a cat’s safety and well-being generally depends on staying indoors at all times.
Is it possible to safely leash train your cat and give your cat an outdoor experience?
Anyone who has ever observed a cat fastidiously grooming herself, or carefully covering waste in the litter box, knows that cats are, by nature, very clean animals. Most kittens learn how to use a litter box from their mother before they come to live with you, but if you adopt an orphaned kitten or older cat, you may have to show her the ropes. Our litter box training tips will get you started off on the right paw!
Although we have been sharing our lives with cats for thousands of years, which may have originated with their rodent control abilities, our modern day house cats are still considered to be semi-domesticated. This characteristic is quite different from dogs, which are considered fully domesticated and probably have been since caveman times.
While we know that the kitty curled up in front of your fireplace is obviously different from a lion stalking the Serengeti, the similarities between the two may actually surprise you.
Hairballs are an unfortunate part of life for most cat owners. That low, hacking sound you can hear from anywhere in the house is the telltale sign that kitty is about to deposit hairballs in the least convenient place possible.
While it’s easy to assume that coughing or vomiting in cats is caused by a hairball, this isn’t always the case. Frequent coughing or vomiting in cats is not normal, and may indicate an underlying health problem.
Hairballs are the result of undigested hair left over from our cats’ fastidious grooming habits. Hairballs (also known by their scientific name “trichobezoars”) are not actually ball shaped; rather they are cylindrical, taking the shape of the cat’s esophagus as they are regurgitated. No cat is immune to hairballs, but longhaired varieties are certainly more prone. Continue…
It’s a common scenario: One minute your sweet kitty is snuggled in your lap, purring away as you absentmindedly stroke his or her soft fur, and the next thing you know your little buddy has turned on you and is now ferociously biting the hand that was petting it so gently just seconds before. You shout, leap to your feet, knock over your beverage. Kitty darts off your lap and out of the room, leaving both of you shaken and annoyed.
This strange behavior is certainly perplexing, but by focusing on a variety of cat bite prevention techniques you may be able to mitigate your cat’s aggression, and create a calmer, more peaceful environment that both you and kitty can enjoy. Continue…
Most cat owners are aware of their cat’s love of hiding…boxes, paper bags, cupboards, under the bed; it seems that no place is off limits to a curious feline. For their survival in the wild, cats have also evolved to hide signs of illness and injury from other animals. Unfortunately for modern cats, those “other animals” are often their human companions.
Because cats are so stoic when it comes to illness, and often don’t display obvious signs that something is wrong until the condition has become advanced, it’s up to us cat owners to do the detective work necessary in order to figure out if our cat is sick. Continue…