5 common cues any cat owner should know
By the Get Leashed Health Team
There are dog people and then there are cat people. There are dog cues that let you know how your dog is feeling and what they want–tail wagging, barking, growling–and then there are cat cues. What are the cat cues you should be aware of? Whether you currently own a cat or are thinking about getting one, here are 5 tips for helping you decipher the subtle mood and health cues your cat is giving you.
Stop looking at me
You’ve seen it before. Your cat naturally gravitates to the one person in the room who is ignoring her. Why you ask? Because cats dislike eye contact—to them it signals aggression and dominance. Want your cat to come to you? Play hard to get.
A cat’s tail can tell you lot. An upright tail is a sign of general contentedness. If it’s slowly swaying, that means they want you to keep doing whatever it is you are doing. A low tail with a sporadic twitch means they are on the hunt, and a low tail that is frantically swishing means they are unhappy with the situation and are likely to attack. Watch for claws!
A fountain please
Is your cat’s water bowl perpetually full, even when you refresh it several times a day? Cats prefer running water because it is a natural sign of healthy, fresh water instead of still, possibly stagnant, water. That’s why many cats fall in love with the sound of the toilet flushing, or hop on counters to drink from the tap. If your cat isn’t drinking from their bowl, it might be time to invest in a cat fountain.
Dogs pant, cats do not. If your cat is panting it could be a medical emergency, likely indicating respiratory or cardiovascular problems. Get to your vet.
Cats, the independent souls that they are, are masters at masking their own pain. A dog will yelp, a cat will pretend like nothing is wrong. If you notice your cat has become hesitant with day-to-day activity—jumping, climbing, unable to groom—this could be a sign they are hurting.
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