The cat is adorable domesticated species of small carnivorous mammal found throughout many parts of the world. It’s the only fully domesticated animal in the feline family and is frequently called the house cat to differentiate it from its wild forefathers. While generally considered docile, a cat can be stubborn and these temperaments can sometimes cause issues with the homeowner. When you see a cat that’s either completely uncooperative or appears to be ignoring you and your home, contact your local animal control service immediately. In some cities, like Philadelphia, for example, there are actually designated pet cats that can be contacted in this situation.
The most common reason why cats get into trouble is because they are either escaping or trying to return to their owners, and often the latter will not realize that the cat has simply returned through the use of air currents. Many cats learn how to maneuver through these “foggy” layers of dense foliage and trees and can maneuver through brush and even walls to get back to their owners. However, when you have a feline with a particularly short hair growth cycle (i.e. short whiskers), this is harder to train.
Short-haired cats (i.e. kittens) are the easiest kittens to catch, especially because females tend to abandon their babies if they are not nurseed regularly. A quick snatch and a firm “no” from the kitten’s mother will usually prevent the mother from returning and leaving her kittens again. Kittens can easily climb into vents, brush, and can even slip through openings created by blocked fallopian tubes and intestines. As soon as you spot the kitten, take her straight to the vet.
Female cats that haven’t been weaned can often be pregnant, so you should be alert for any signs of pregnancy. A cat that is unusually quiet, hesitant or fearful may be pregnant. In these instances, your veterinarian will need to check the cat more carefully to make sure it is not having a reaction to a particular drug or substance. In many cases, pregnant cats are calm and gentle and do not normally have any medical issues.
Feral cats are typically born with inferior quality fur. Even purebred cats may have problems with their hair, because they spend less time grooming and because they rarely receive regular veterinary checkups. They can suffer from a variety of health issues, including hair loss and matted hairs (tangle weave). You can avoid this problem by spaying or neutering your feral cat and providing her with an annual examination.
Cat owners generally don’t notice major problems until the kitten becomes one-year-old, at which time major behavioral changes might occur. By then, most of your cats’ problems will have corrected themselves. Note that kittens that have never been indoors should not be allowed to stay in a house with other cats, because they might try to fight and get away. If your kittens are house cats, you might also consider providing them with a cat condo to give them a sense of independence.