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Posts Tagged ‘cat advice column

In December 2013, my husband and I adopted a one-year-old tortoiseshell from Hearts United for Animals. Cinder has taught us so much about cats that it seemed proper for her to have her own advice column.

QUESTION: How can one bond with a new cat?

Zoom! Zoom! That’s me racing from one part of the library to another. The library is the room where my pet parents restricted me during my first week with them. My owner was laughing as she chased me. When I ducked under a computer desk, she dropped to her knees and crawled after me. Next, I hid under a printer stand. Ha! She was too big to follow me. My owner tilted her head one way and then the other, calling my name and acting as if she didn’t know where I was. I peeked out at her, in case she really didn’t know where I was. Then I dashed past her again, ready for another game of chase.

Purr! Purr! On one of her visits to see me, my owner brought me a white furry mouse. She put it in front of me. Was it real? I gave it a sniff. Ah, it’s just a toy. I batted it with my paws. Then I rolled over on my back. The toy still in my paws, I pulled it to my face and then wrestled with it. The toy fell. I bounded to my feet and batted it again. My owner threw the mouse across the room and I raced after it. I flicked it away and then chased it down, over and over, until I grew tired. My owner embraced me in a hug, and I let her, briefly. Then I squirmed away. I needed space. Then I rubbed my nose to hers to thank her. What a wonderful world I have!

You might think that cats don’t bond with their owners, but we really do, and here are ways you can encourage your cat to bond with you:

  • Share your scent: Smells define a cat’s life! It shouldn’t surprise you that we want to know your unique scent.
  • Get down on our level: The lower you are, the more comfortable cats will feel with you. If you sit quietly and allow us to approach you when we choose, we’ll appreciate this action.
  • Spend time with us: One of my sisters likes to go for stroller rides with our owners. I don’t. My other sister likes to lay on their laps. I don’t. But I do like to wrestle my owners. We’re all different in the type of attention we want, but we also all want it.
  • Play with us: Each time my owners spend time with me in the library, they bring food or they come to play. The food lets me know they care for me; the toys let me know life with them will be fun.
  • Pet us: Even if I don’t like being hugged, I do like being stroked. Also, petting is the best way to get cats used to grooming, which is one of our most social behaviors.
  • Let us hear you: There are many ways to communicate with us. Say hello. Meow when we do. Sing to us. Just talk—about anything and everything. We like to hear your voice!
  • Watch us: Even though my sisters and I have our unique mannerisms, we also have a lot in common. Take time to watch us and soon everyone will think you’re a cat whisperer. 😉
  • Let us sleep with you: Cats enjoy love the warmth of our owners. We also love beds—whether our own, the dog’s, or yours!

Reprinted with permission from Lincoln Animal Ambassadors Pet Talk. This article is original in content and not to be reproduced without permission. Copyright 2017.

 

In December 2013, my husband and I adopted a one-year-old tortoiseshell from Hearts United for Animals. Cinder has taught us so much about cats that it seemed proper for her to have her own advice column.

QUESTION: How does one clip a cat’s nails?

Meow! Meow! After I got adopted, I felt so happy to have a new home. I also felt so grateful to my new owners. In that first week, I wanted to check out my new home and to thank my new family—both at the same time.

I tried to knead the scratchy carpet, the way I used to knead on my mom when I was just a kitten. But my claws got caught in the loops of carpet fibers. I tugged to free my nail. Then tried again to knead. But I got stuck again.

Never mind, I figured, I’ll just climb on my owners. Except this time my claws got hooked on the man’s jacket. He gently worked my claws free. I thought maybe I should just stop, so that I didn’t upset my new owners. But I couldn’t! I just felt so excited! But then my nails got hooked into the lady’s jeans.

When she put me down, I retreated to my bed. All I wanted to do was show my appreciation, but instead I felt as if I were making a mess of everything. I took a nap to figure out what to do.

When my owners woke me, they surprised me by making a fuss over my paws. I wanted to do whatever they wanted. But I also kind of felt embarrassed. Was there something wrong with me? Why were they checking out my paws?

Eventually, I found out that they were just helping me. once I got used to having my paws touched, they trimmed my nails. After that, I had a lot of fun scratching things over the next few weeks without getting stuck!

Here is how to clip a cat’s nails:

  • Most cats are nervous of having their paws touched the first time. To help us adjust to the experience, pet our paws while simultaneously petting us in our favorite spots. Sweeten the deal by rewarding us with treats for letting you handle our paws.
  • Once we’ll let you rest your hand on our paws without pulling away, this means we’re comfortable. Now you can start to hold and massage our paws.
  • Eventually, you should be able to gently apply pressure to our paws, which will push out individual claws. When you look at an extended claw, you’ll see a pinkish area close to the toe. This area is called the quick. Be careful not to trim our nails too close to the quick because it’s painful and we’ll bleed. You should clip off only the sharp point.
  • Use a pair of nail clippers specifically designed for cat claws.
  • A good time for nail trimming is after we’ve eaten, when we’re feeling sleepy and content.
  • Please remember to keep reassuring and rewarding us. We like to know we’ve done well!
nail, before

cat nail before being clipped

nail, after

cat nail after being clipped

Reprinted with permission from Lincoln Animal Ambassadors Pet Talk. This article is original in content and not to be reproduced without permission. Copyright 2017.


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Summer Reviews

Books can take connect us with strangers, take us to unique places, and introduce us to new ideas. They can also offer hope in a chaotic world. And so I must share what I read!

Each week, I’ll introduce you to religious books, Advanced Reader Copies, animal books, or diversity books. Some I’ll review as singles and others as part of round-ups. Just ahead, there will be reviews of:

  • Joni: The unforgettable story of a young woman’s struggle against quadriplegia & depression by Joni Eareckson
  • The True Story of the World’s Most Beloved Animal Sanctuary by Samantha Glen
  • Brothers in hope : the story of the Lost Boys of Sudan–refugees by Mary Williams
  • The Inner Life of Cats by Thomas McNamee

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