When Cats Don’t Like Your Holiday Visitors

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There are a lot of exciting things that take place during the holidays. A common example for many people is hosting guests at their home. Some guests may only come over for a few hours to enjoy a holiday meal with you. Others may stay for a longer period of time. Although you probably enjoy having these kinds of guests in your home a lot, your cat may not feel the same way.

If you know you’re going to have guests over this holiday season but you’re worried about how your cat is going to respond to having new people in your home, we have several strategies to help take care of both your visitors and cat:

1. Avoid Pressuring Your Cat

Even though it comes with good intentions, a common mistake cat owners make is trying to get their cat excited about interacting with a visitor. While that’s fine if you have an especially social cat or a kitten that you want to help get used to new people, for a cat that’s already set in its ways, you’re better off letting it hang out wherever it wants to be and eventually coming out on its own if it chooses.

2. Give Your Visitors Helpful Tips

While you can’t really tell your cat how to act around visitors, you can give anyone who comes over for the holidays a few tips for interacting with your cat. First, let them know that your cat takes awhile to warm up, so they shouldn’t feel pressured to engage. Another very helpful tip is to let visitors know that if your cat does start coming around them, they can maximize the likelihood of a successful interaction by using eye kisses. In case you aren’t familiar with this term, it’s done through slow blinking and avoiding direct eye contact. This lets a cat know that someone is in no way a threat to them.

3. Focus on Positive Associations

One way you can help minimize your cat’s stress about visitors and build momentum towards successful future interactions is to focus on positive associations whenever someone comes into your house. This can include managing your own energy, along with exposing your cat to something it really likes whenever a visitor first comes inside.

4. Create a Safe Space

A simple but very effective way to keep both your cat and guests comfortable during holiday visits is to create a safe space for your cat. This should be an area in your home where your cat doesn’t feel pressured and can enjoy activities like scratching. By giving your cat this space, which should include a bowl of tasty cat food, you can minimize the likelihood of your cat having any bad experiences while guests are over.

How Do Cats Always Land On Their Feet?

 

photo-1452873867668-7325bd9f4438For people who don’t have a cat, the type of smooth landings portrayed by cats in movies and TV shows may seem like an exaggeration. But for anyone who has a cat, chances are you’ve seen your cat pull off a landing that seemed nearly impossible. A cat’s ability to always land on its feet is directly tied to the old saying that cats have nine lives.

While cat owners have seen this type of landing in action, they still may not have an explanation for it. So if you’re wondering how cats actually pull off this feat, keeping reading to find out! Read More

How Cats Keep Cool in the Dog Days of Summer

cat in the garden

Summer Cat

In our last post, we talked about dogs sweating (or their lack of), how to avoid overheating and what you need to know about the glands in a dog’s paw. But as we all know, dogs aren’t the only ones who can be affected by the summer heat. Since we’re probably going to have at least a few more scorchers (if not more) this year, we want to use this post to focus on what cats do to manage their temperature during the summer.

Cats, Sweating and Panting

Like dogs, cats don’t do their sweating out of their brow. Instead, the area where you’ll find sweat glands on a cat is their paws. If a cat gets scared, there’s a chance they’ll sweat so much that they end up leaving wet paw prints wherever they walk. But in normal cases, cats just do a little sweating through their paws. However, since these glands are small, they’re often not enough to fully cool a cat.

Needing other ways to cool down brings up the subject of panting. Although this behavior is very common in dogs, cat owners probably don’t notice this action as often. However, cats can and do pant. When this happens, it means they’re very hot, so it’s a good idea to provide water and a cooler environment if possible.

Cats are vulnerable to heat stroke or overheating, so watch out for signs like drooling, heavy panting or staggering. In the event you see these signs, use a damp cloth on your cat’s belly that’s cool but not cold and seek veterinary care as soon as possible.

Other Ways Cats Beat the Heat

Because sweating through the paws is only a minor part of cat’s cooling down and panting is reserved for especially hot situations, you’re probably still wondering what they do to stay cool. One of the strategies cats use is finding the coolest spot available. That may be under the bed or on cool tile floor. So while it may look like a cat is hiding, there’s a good chance they’re just trying to beat the heat.

Another very interesting way cats stay cool is by mimicking the process of sweating. They do this by licking their coats even more than normal when it’s hot. By getting their saliva all over their coat, they can enjoy a cooling effect when it evaporates. You can help your cat stay cool by being sure to consistently brush during the hottest months. Some cats also enjoy playing with ice cubes, so you should definitely try that out as well.

By providing your cat with a comfortable environment throughout the summer, along with a daily diet of great cat food, you can help your cat continue to feel its best even when the weather is absolutely scorching outside.