When it comes to human communication, there are loads of “tells” that inform us (consciously and subconsciously) about another’s moods, feelings, opinions, and perspectives. Of course we’re not always aware that we’re giving cues, or even picking up ones from others.
Cats, on the other hand, are expert communicators. We just have to know what to look for. Their eyes, ears, and posture all give telling clues, but to really have a handle on cat body language, it is the tail that is arguably the most precise.Continue…
If you’ve been stumped by feline behaviors in the past, join the club. Cats have some endearing but also quirky tendencies that just beg to be explained – such as curling up tightly to take a nap, or grooming fastidiously after a meal.
One such tendency is the habit of “making biscuits” or kneading. But what exactly is this? And why do cats knead? Godspeed Animal Care explores this question, here.
What is Cat Kneading?
Before we get into why cats knead, let’s talk about what exactly it is. Cat kneading is a pushing motion cats make with their paws, alternating between left and right. It often occurs on a soft surface such as a bed, pillow, blanket, or your lap. Some cats knead with claws completely retracted, and others extend their claws as they push out and retract them as they pull back.
The behavior is called “kneading” because it resembles how a baker works bread dough.Continue…
As if we needed another reason to detest fleas, they are responsible for spreading a bacterium called Bartonella henselae to approximately 40% of cats.
Found in flea dirt (droppings) and also deposited via direct bites on the skin, B. henselae can also be spread from one infected cat to another during a fight, and to humans, as well.
If you have a cat that likes to use their claws, we recommend this quick refresher on the dangers of cat scratch disease.
Cat scratch disease is a bacterial infection. If an infected cat bites or scratches you and breaks the skin, or simply licks at an existing open wound, a mild infection can develop at the site of the injury in about 3-14 days. Signs of cat scratch disease include:
Cats are pretty self sufficient. They are also good at covering up when they are not happy or experiencing stress. Many cat owners feel that things are hunky-dory in the kitty happiness department. After all, they have a warm place to snuggle, a bowl of food, and a clean litter box. What’s to be sad about?
Many cats are not as content with life as their owners may believe. In honor of Happy Cat Month, Godspeed Animal Care wants to share with you a few ways to assess if have a happy cat (or if you have some work to do). Continue…
The movie Homeward Bound depicts the harrowing journey made by three courageous pets. Chance and Shadow are two canines who appreciate their feline friend, Sassy, although they bicker like most cats and dogs. Sassy says, “Like I said all along, poopsie, cats rule and dogs drool!”
Antagonistic or not, Sassy’s got a point. Certain breeds of dogs are known to drool more than others. However, there are reasons why some cats drool, too – and they aren’t always good.
Many cats drool when blissed out. This usually occurs after kneading, snuggling their owners, or even just dreaming. A sign of great happiness, most cat owners will look upon a puddle of drool with a sigh or a shrug.
The important thing to remember is that, while cat drooling can be a benign behavior, it can also signify disease, medical problems, or pain that shouldn’t be ignored.
There’s irrefutable proof that humans have coexisted with cats for nearly 10,000 years, a solid amount of time to really get to know a species. However, anecdotal evidence collected over millennia and contemporary scientific research support what we intrinsically already knew: there’s still much to learn about the mysterious cat! We love them because they keep us guessing, but also because of the following feline facts we know to be true.
A grave in Cyprus revealed human and kitten remains, proving a relationship between our two species that possibly began 9,500 years ago. Cats were a non-native species to this Mediterranean island, so the humans that brought this cat (or his or her relative) did so purposely.
While a cat on a rudimentary boat or raft seems unbelievable, consider the feline fact that cats can drink seawater! Unlike humans, healthy feline kidneys can efficiently filter out the salt and not become dehydrated.
10 Feline Facts
With quirky characteristics and puzzling skills, we adore and admire cats for these feline facts (and so many more!):
Although cats are the most popular pets in the U.S. (they outnumber dogs by almost 15 million), cats visit the veterinarian far less frequently than their canine counterparts. While there are certainly a variety of factors at play in why pet owners take cats to the vet less often, one reason may be that the signs of illness in cats are often subtle and hard to recognize.
Too often, by the time a pet owner realizes his or her cat is ill, the cat is very, very ill. Medical problems are often best treated when they are caught early, making it critically important to learn how to tell if your cat is sick.
Figuring out if Your Cat Is Sick
Cats have evolved to hide signs of illness and injury, but an astute pet owner can determine if his or her cat should take a trip to the veterinarian by paying attention to the following:
Of all the illnesses we vaccinate your cat against, heartworm disease is not one of them. While it’s true that felines are considered resistant to the growing worms, both indoor and outdoor cats are at risk for developing heartworm disease. Limiting exposure and taking a preventive approach are the best weapons to defend against heartworm in cats.
A Proactive Approach
Commonly viewed as a disease that only affects dogs, heartworm in cats occurs nationwide, causing painful symptoms and early mortality. Because of this (and to avoid emergency care), we advise routine screening and monthly preventive medication to protect your cat. Continue…
No one likes mosquitoes. They whine in your ear, create itchy welts, and carry dreadful diseases. Not surprisingly, mosquitoes aren’t just bothersome to humans; they will feed on virtually all mammals, including our pets.
No matter where you live, your beloved pet is at risk for the mosquito-borne parasites, heartworms. While dry regions have a much lower incidence than warm, wet regions, this deadly roundworm has been reported in all 50 states.
The spookiest season of the year is upon us, and that means tricks, treats, and costumes galore. But are you and your pet are ready to enjoy this night of ghouls and goblins, superheroes and villains? If the decorations are up, the candy bought, and the pumpkins carved, the only left to do is take the necessary precautions to keep your pet safe and comfortable on what could be a very distressing night for your four-legged trickster.
The Tricks, the Treats, and Everything in Between
Many aspects of Halloween can be incredibly enjoyable for both you and your pet, but as with every holiday, there are potential dangers that could threaten both your pet’s health and safety. As All Hallows Eve draws nearer, here are a few things to remember when it comes to Halloween safety for pets: Continue…