Human behaviours that can cause cats undue stress

I just chanced upon this article and I agree with everything in it: https://www.freemalaysiatoday.com/category/leisure/2024/01/03/dressing-cats-up-can-cause-them-undue-stress-experts-say/

The contents of this article has inspired me to share these, below:

  1. Dressing up pets – I do not understand why some parents must dress up their pets (dogs and cats). Some claim that their pets like it. I do not know what to say to this. But I’ve never dressed up our cats UNLESS it was a tshirt for a purpose – to cover up a wound on the chest for Indy and for Tiger, to prevent him from biting himself too deeply when he had the biting seizures. If you remember, we sewed those tshirts ourselves too.
  2. Pet collars – I have never put a collar on our dogs or cats. I remember a scene from Jungle Book where Bagheera (I think) told Mowgli about the bald line around his neck which was due to being collared as a captive animal. But even before that, I have never put on a collar for any of our pets UNLESS again, for Ginger so that my husband could hear him approaching the door to make his grand escapes, but even that trick did not work because my husband could not hear the bell! So that plan was a total failure. Some people put collars on their free roaming cats so that people would know the cat has a home. But dogs should actually wear collars with tags that contain the contact number of their parents so that in case they escape, good samaritans who find them can contact the parent. So yes, there is a purpose for that. But not cats, please. If a cat is free roaming, the collar might cause entanglement and even death. There are, however, detachable cat collars. You could try that, but I have tried and our cats always broke it open…haha.
  3. Putting dogs into prams and taking them for “walks” – Granted, some places may only allow pet prams as they do not want dogs walking on their floors, but for those people who take their dogs for “walks” in the park by pushing them around in prams? Goodness… As my dog-friend always says, “Dogs for four legs, people! It’s meant for walking!” Yes, all pets need to walk, that’s the least of exercises for them.
  4. Visiting other people’s pets – I once had an acquaintance who said that if I allowed his children to visit our cats (kind of like a zoo visit), he would make a donation to AnimalCare. I said “No, I’m sorry, my cats will be totally stressed out with strangers, so no, thanks.” Our cats, have, time and again, demonstrated that they are ONLY comfortable with certain people. And these would be people who genuinely like them. Cats and dogs have a sixth sense to identify genuine animal lovers. Or rather, to be fair, people who have a genuine affinity or affection for them. My cats will go hide in the furthest corners if someone who is not an animal lover comes to visit. So yes, putting pets up for exhibition might just stress the pets up unnecessarily.
  5. Forcing a pet to be litter box-trained or toilet-trained – No, please do not do this. Try, by all means, to litter box or toilet-train them. Try, but if you fail, let it be. A part of having a pet is to also be able to put up with their untrainable ways. Look at all my male alphas – they spray urine even when they have already been neutered at the right age. They spray because ours is a multi-cat household, so they spray not to mate but to mark their territory. It’s a natural behaviour for them. The article talks about cats developing kidney stones when they were sent to a shelter because they did not know how to use the litter boxes. This is why I give all our cats a choice of litter boxes as well as sandpits and the soil and grass. They usually prefer the soil and grass. It’s just more natural.
  6. Forcing a pet to eat a particular food – I know some people do this, but I don’t. I believe that just like us humans, pets need variety in their diet too. And it might be a good thing to let them eat all kinds of foods to train their stomach’s digestibility. The other day I wrote a famous pet food company to ask about a certain product and their advice was to use just one product and stick to it. Do not cross brands and do not even choose another product from that same company! What kind of horrible marketing advice is that??

So the article above prompted me to share all these with you. You may disagree, which is completely fine, but these are my thoughts and it is what I practise. If you wish to share you thoughts, please feel free to leave a comment. I might learn a thing or two from you too!

Let me be. I just want to be lazy…

We are waiting for Gerald to come visit us. Don’t disturb us, please.

Why are you taking my photo? Your hand isn’t steady, it will just turn out blur, do you know? 

I’m moving so fast, you’re just wasting your time. 

I’ll be good. I will stay still for you to take my photo…I’m a good cat. 

Thank you, Lynx!

 


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