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What Nuisance Behaviors Do Cat Owners Face? And what to do about it!

Posted by Mélanie De Nobile on

We all love our kitty, but sometime they do get a little bit on our nerves with some behaviours. We want to help you stop these behaviors and live a happy life with your cat!

Here are a few common behavior problems and some tips for managing them.


1. Scratching Your Furniture

    Scratching is a normal cat behavior, it serves a marking function as well as providing the cat with stretching opportunities. If you supply your cat with many different types of scratching posts, pads and trees and spread them throughout your house, chances are he will stop to scratch your furniture. Cats do have texture preferences for scratching surfaces so be sure that your posts are covered in the right material (rope, sisal, cardboard, or wood). Scratching items should be vertical and horizontal surfaces, sturdy, well constructed, and tall enough for your cat to get a full body stretch. If your cat is already scratching the furniture, temporarily cover the area with a blanket or plastic and place a scratching post near to it to introduce new habits. Discover our scratching outlets here.



    2. Excessive meowing

      Excessive vocalization may be an attention-seeking behavior, but it also may indicate that your cat suffers from a medical problem, especially in elderly cats or cats that vocalize primarily at night. If your cat suddenly has this kind of behavior and fits these criteria, be sure to take him to the veterinarian. 

      Instead of rewarding your cat’s vocal demands to be let outside, fed or petted, try to ignore your cat’s excessive meowing. Try engaging your cat with daily play sessions and feeding him before your cat starts to meow. Environmental enrichment helps constructively occupy your cat and aid in reducing boredom. You may also want to try interactive pet bowls (find our collection here) or food-dispenser toys (find our variety of toys here) to engage your cat’s natural hunting instinct.


      3. Jumping On Counters Or Tables

        Cats generally like to climb and sleep in high places. In order to avoid this undesirable behavior on certain surfaces (like dining table!), give your cat appropriate options for acceptable high perches (very tall cat trees, cat condos, or cat shelves). You can also make being on the floor rewarding by providing a wide variety of enrichment toys, activities and hiding places.


         4. Your Cat Bites Or Scratches You During Play

          All cats need to play and it is a normal behavior. Unfortunately, problems can sometimes arise when cat play is directed toward people. Despite the playful intentions of a cat, he can cause injury to his human playmates. Cat scratches and bites are painful and can easily become infected.


          Here are some tips to Reduce Your Cat's Rough Play Behavior.

          • Frequently give your cat new objects to discover, such as cardboard boxes, grocery bags, straws, etc.
          • Provide a variety of toys for your cat so you can determine his preferences.
          • Twice a day, spend at least 5 to 10 minutes playing with your cat. During playtime, direct the play away from you by using a long dangly toy or throwing your cat’s favorite toys.

          Here are some things you must avoid in order to eliminate the bites or scratches behaviour.

          • Never allow your cat to play with your hands, feet or any other body part.
          • Do not use toys that teach your cat to play with your hands, such as gloves with balls hanging from the fingers.
          • Do not physically punish your cat for rough play. If you hit or slap your cat, he may perceive your actions as play and become even rougher. Alternatively, he might become fearful of your hands and respond by avoiding you or changing from play to real aggression.


          5. Eating/Destroying House Plants

            Plant eating is another normal cat behavior. However, some house plants are poisonous for cats (Christmas trees, day lilies, hydrangea, irises, mistletoe, poinsettia, etc.). To resolve the problem, you can provide your cat with cat grass, which can be purchased from your local pet store.  Put the pots of cat grass in multiple locations around your house so that your cat always has easy access. Move the remaining house plants to areas where your cat cannot access them.

            We hope these tips will be helpful to enjoy life with your cat!

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