feline behavior

Who Gets Custody of the Cat in a Divorce

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Divorce is an emotional minefield, and custody issues make a difficult time even more challenging. Most cat guardians consider cats family members, and cat custody can turn into a battle very much like child custody.

Even though pets are considered property in most jurisdictions, courts are starting to recognize the relationship with a pet is different than the relationship with other property. Since a pet isn’t something that can easily be replaced or have a monetary value assigned, courts may be more open to considering custody arrangements for pets.Continue Reading

Will the Solar Eclipse Affect Your Cat?

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On Monday, August 21, 2017, a total solar eclipse will be visible in totality within a band across the entire contiguous United States. And while there are some things you’ll need to do to prepare if you want to watch the eclipse, even if you’re not in the area of totality, there are a lot of things you don’t need to worry about, and that includes your cats.Continue Reading

How to Help Your Shy Cat Deal with Visitors

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Does your cat run and hide when the doorbell rings? Do your friends not believe that you actually have a cat? It’s not unusual for cats to pull a disappearing act when strangers visit. While some cats are naturally gregarious, others may be cautious with strangers, especially if they haven’t been introduced to many different people during a cat’s prime socialization period (between three to nine weeks of age.) Some cats are  just naturally shy. And it’s not helping that visitors often come with other “scary” experiences such as loud voices, large boxes or suitcases being brought into the house, and a general disruption of a cat’s routine.Continue Reading

Review: The Inner Life of Cats

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In The Inner Life of Cats: The Science and Secrets of Our Mysterious Feline Companions, Thomas McNamee provides fascinating insights into the complicated world of our mysterious cats. Science is finally beginning to understand just how complex feline communication and emotions may be, and the author provides information from past and current studies that will have you nod your head in recognition, but also cause plenty of “aha” moments. But  best of all, the author illustrates the scientific findings with anecdotes of his own beloved cat Augusta, from the time he and his wife rescued the little black kitten on a snowy night in Montana to her final days fifteen years later.Continue Reading

How Cats Communicate Through Marking Behavior

cat-marking-behavior

Do you speak cat? Even though cats express themselves vocally, they primarily use their face, tail and body to communicate with each other and with the humans in their lives. Another important way cats communicate is through marking behavior. Understanding this behavior will not only enhance the relationship between you and your cat, it will also help you prevent potential problems in your household, especially when you have multiple cats.Continue Reading

Ask the Cat Behaviorist with Mikel Delgado

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We’re super excited to introduce a new regular feature on The Conscious Cat: Ask the Cat Behaviorist with Mikel Delgado! We introduced you to Mikel last week. She is a Certified Cat Behavior Consultant at Feline Minds, offering on-site consultations for cat guardians, shelters, and pet-related businesses in the San Francisco Bay Area, and remote consultations around the world. She is currently completing her PhD in Psychology at UC Berkeley, where she studies animal behavior and human-pet relationships.Continue Reading

Interview With Cat Behaviorist Mikel Delgado

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Mikel Delgado is a Certified Cat Behavior Consultant at Feline Minds, offering on-site consultations for cat guardians, shelters, and pet-related businesses in the San Francisco Bay Area. She is currently completing her PhD in Psychology at UC Berkeley, where she studies animal behavior and human-pet relationships. Mikel also blogs about animal behavior at catsandsquirrels.com. Mikel lives in Berkeley with her boyfriend, Scott, and their two rescue cats. Continue Reading

Review: Making’ Biscuits: Weird Cat Habits and the Even Weirder Habits of the Humans Who Love Them

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No matter how much any of us think we know about cats, they will always remain just a little mysterious. And while there are explanations based on behavioral science for many of their habits that we may think of as odd, I would be that for every weird feline habit explained, there’s another quirky one that defies logic. In Making’ Biscuits: Weird Cat Habits and the Even Weirder Habits of the Humans Who Love Them, Deborah Barnes explores the lighter side of feline behavior.Continue Reading

Behavior Study Wants to Learn More About Cats, and You Can Help

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When I was at the American Association of Feline Practitioners annual conference last month, I heard Theresa DePorter, BS, DVM, DECAWBM, DACVB, a veterinarian at Oakland Veterinary Referral Services in Bloomfield Hills, MI, speak on longterm behavior modification strategies for cats (more on this topic to come soon.) Dr. Porter was one of the veterinarians involved in helping create the new Feliway Multicat pheromone product, which is designed to reduce conflict and tension between cats in the same household.

Dr. DePorter is conducting a new study that is designed to help researchers understand more about cats.Continue Reading

Is There a Connection Between Cat Breed, Coat Color and Behavior?