A cat’s behavior is often predictable and can be quite predictable if the cat has a regular pattern of behavior. After all, cats are very predictable and you can usually recognize a typical behavior pattern on the first attempt. Unfortunately, humans don’t have the same “natural intuition” regarding cats that we have about dogs. Here are some common characteristics and tips for recognizing the more obvious cat behavioral problems and recognizing when your cat is misbehaving:
territoriality – Cats mark their territory by urine or leaving scents of their own. They will do this in areas where they live (this means anywhere there are humans) and also in areas that they consider theirs in a “proper” sense – such as in the front lawn of your house or your garden. It is not uncommon for cats to urinate on furniture, leave behind scents of urine, or scratch objects which are close to their territory.
Separation anxiety – Your cat could be anxious because it is separated from you or from other members of its litter. For example, if you have two cats and one has been altered, then the altered cat may be withdrawn and unwilling to be handled. In this case, you might notice that your cat starts scratching more and prefers to be on its own or is rather aggressive towards other cats and children. Note: kittens are less likely to exhibit these behaviors until they are a bit older, generally by two months of age.
Hunting – felis catus, or feral cats, are accustomed to living in and hunting for their own food and the food of other felines in the area. This natural condition has been modified through human intervention. When these cats were originally bred, they were bred for a specific purpose – to kill other cats. Today, these cats often live in abandoned homes or orphanages, and they hunt in parks, gardens and abandoned areas. Note: feral cats are less aggressive towards humans and usually only attack when threatened.
Grooming – Your domestic cat may be suffering from excessive grooming. Note: these cats usually only groom themselves. As an alternative to combing, your cat may be using clippers, especially if your pet is indoor. Clippers are not necessarily cruel instruments; on the contrary, most owners find clipping interesting. When these cats are clipped regularly, it helps to remove hair from under the cat’s tail. Note: regular grooming does not only help with shedding, but it helps to reduce the risks of infection and disease.
Excessive barking – You may have observed that in homes where domestic cats are kept, the number of barking at cars and other loud noises is very high. Domestic cats hunt prey as their main source of food, so they will often bark to attract their prey. Note: barking does not necessarily mean that the animal is hungry or trying to communicate. If you keep your cat inside all day, the noise can be due to stress, which will eventually lower the cats’ intelligence and make them less sociable.