by Nomi Berger
People like to talk about the funny quirks that cats have, but did you know that cat owners have a lot of quirks too? Yes, it’s true! You are likely doing a few things that are driving your cat absolutely crazy. Are you guilty of any of these?
- Taking Your Cat For Car Rides
Sure, dogs love riding in cars. They love to hang their heads out the window and they get excited about going for a walk. But although you will sometimes find cats who love walking outside on a harness, you won’t find many cats who love riding in cars. You see, cats are very territorial and they love routine. When you change things up, it can freak them out. They also can get motion sickness really easily. So you may end up with a poor cat who’s vomiting or even defecating out of sickness and anxiety! Don’t take your cat for a car ride unless it’s a necessity.
- Going On Play Dates
This is another huge way in which cats are very different from dogs. You can take dogs to dog parks where they’ll play with stranger dogs and have a great time. But not cats. Cats like to stake their claim, so unless you have a super friendly cat, she probably won’t want to visit your friend’s house or meet your friend’s cats. Felines are very territorial and typically don’t like meeting new cats or smelling strange cat scents. So introducing them to a cat for just a few hours can be a sure way to invite hissing and flying fur. (This is also why cats don’t like seeing themselves in a mirror.)
- Bathing Your Cat
Most cats are just fine with bathing themselves – without water. On rare occasions they may need a bath, but this could be painful for both of you. Don’t do it unless absolutely necessary. If you must, read this article for tips.
- Not Cleaning The Litter Box Enough
Just because your cat covers her poop and pee doesn’t mean she won’t need the litter box changed frequently. In fact, even if you think the litter box is fine, kitty might think differently. A cat has a sense of smell that is 14 times stronger than yours. If she’s pooping right outside the box instead of using it, she might be trying to tell you something. Make sure you clean the box at least once a day.
- Petting Your Cat Too Much
Cats can get overstimulated with very little warning. That’s why you may be petting your cat and she’s purring one minute and suddenly hissing or scratching you the next. Figure out your cat’s personality and learn from your mistakes. Some cats need to be petted gently or only on the head, neck, and upper back. This may also mean that you need to teach your children how to play gently with your cat too.
- Fighting Loudly Or Playing Loud Music
Sure, no one loves to fight, but your cat may hate your fights even more than you do! Many cats are very sensitive to loud noises. Thunderstorms, doorbells, loud music, and even yelling can get them really scared. Try to keep things as calm as you can and don’t blast the TV or the stereo too much. If your cat seems too sensitive or anxious, try buying a diffuser that emits a scent that mimics a cat’s calming pheromones. This can sometimes help.
- Leaving Food Out For Too Long Or Serving It Cold
If you feed your cat wet food in addition to dry food, don’t leave the wet food out for so long that it gets stale. Dangerous bacteria can grow in food that’s left out for even a day. So put out small portions that you only leave around for 30 minutes. In addition, some cats hate cold food. If you’ve got some canned food in the refrigerator, let it “thaw” to room temperature before you give it to kitty.
- Ignoring Her
Cats may fend for themselves well, but they don’t like being alone or ignored. Take time to play with your cat every day. She likely has a lot of pent up energy from being in the house all the time. This means she needs some engaging play time with you to get exercise. Play time can also be a great way to bond with your cat and build her trust in you.