1-Don’t interrupt my nap on your computer or keyboard.
You keep saying you have a lot of work to do on the computer, then you wake us up and kick us out, but we know what you’re really planning on doing on the internet: watching cat videos . Weird, don’t humans realize that cats need an average of 12-16 hours of sleep per day? Also, our delicate cat bodies need the warmth of your computers: our ideal temperature is a few degrees warmer than you humans.
2-Stop taking pictures of me
Humans can’t seem to resist snapping photos with their phones when they’re near us, but they resort to sneaky tactics like waving fun toys around to get our attention, only to drop them as soon as we turn away . It’s cruel. If we cats are willing to let you film us, the least you can do is let us play back a little. There’s one thing you don’t have to worry about when it comes to photography: camera flashes won’t hurt cats’ eyes. But they often produce an eerie glow caused by the tapetum lucidum, a layer of ultra-reflective cells in feline eyes that helps us see in low light conditions.
3-Get your hands off my belly, okay?
You assume that when we show you our stomachs, we are friendly. Yes, in some cases this is normal cat behavior that signifies friendliness. But at other times, it’s the opposite: it’s the feline language to say “Do you want to fight? Let’s go. Showing the belly is a defensive move that shows potential enemies that all of our limbs and claws are ready to go into attack mode. And there’s another common reason we show our bellies: we’re just trying to stretch out. And please keep me well fed.
4-I am a cat… let me scratch myself.
Just like you trim and file your nails so they don’t reach the Guinness World Record, we cats need to maintain our claws. One of the behaviors of cats is scratching, which helps to remove the growth of dead nails. Two other important explanations explain why we scratch: we do it to mark our territory (we have scent glands in our paws, how cool, right?) or to stretch (how do you think we stay so good form ?). Unfortunately, when a couch or rug becomes our favorite place to scratch, some of you end up cutting your nails. Please don’t do this, it would be like having your fingertips cut off. Instead, buy us a nice scratching post (you may have to try different designs until you find one we like), rub it with catnip, and give us a treat. every time we use it.
5-I am perfectly capable of taking a bath, thank you.
Some scientists assume that today’s cats don’t like to swim or get wet because since we were domesticated around 5,000 to 10,000 years ago, we’ve been protected from rain and snow. by human companions. Also, it’s true that cats’ fur doesn’t dry out quickly and it’s just uncomfortable to get wet. Who needs baths and showers anyway? Cats are born with the essential grooming tools: paws, rough and barbed tongue, and saliva. But even though we hate being doused with water, you need to make sure we have enough to drink, especially if our diet consists of dry foods (canned foods are about 78% water). Whatever the feed, always provide your cat with a separate water bowl and change and clean it daily.
6-Don’t panic when I bring you “gifts” of dead insects or animals.
Animal behavior scientists have discovered some reasons why we do this. We may imitate what our mother cats have done for us. You fill our plates every day, and since we are not ungrateful, we return the favor. Or, we may have caught, say, more crickets than we can consume, so we thought you’d like to have the leftovers. Finally, we could give you our catches so that you can help us save them for later.
7-I meow to tell you something specific, but when you meow me, you are not speaking in feline language.
Scientists have identified more than a dozen different meows emitted by cats, each with its own meaning. In general, kittens use meows to communicate with their mothers, but adult cats only use them to communicate with humans. We use hisses, growls, squeaks and other sounds to talk to us. Discerning owners can probably distinguish an “I’m hungry” cat’s meow from an “I’m bored” cat or discern “I’m hurt” from an “I’m scared” cat. When you meow, we recognize your voice, but nothing you say makes sense.
Humans are inhabited by the incessant need to inflict upon themselves hats, ties, dresses, and other items of clothing. But what are we to you…dogs? We hate feeling enclosed or confined, and if you see us kneading one of your sweaters, we just enjoy the texture of the fabric under our paws; that doesn’t mean we want to wear it, and we certainly don’t want to wear it to be the star of cat memes. We don’t need clothes to cover us: our coat contains up to 45,000 hairs per square centimeter.
8-Stop blaming my hair for your allergies.
Why are so many humans allergic to us (cat allergies are thought to be twice as common as dog allergies). You don’t see cats allergic to humans, do you? And you humans are quick to point to our hair as the culprit. But the real cause of your sneezing and coughing is a stubborn, super-adhesive protein found in cats’ fur called “Fel d 1.” And we are sorry to announce to you, to you who have taken the trouble to buy a so-called “hypoallergenic” cat, that this breed does not exist. Some breeds produce less Fel d 1 than others, but all cats produce it. To keep me healthy, learn how to give a cat a pill.
9-You fill your house with tempting power leads, but yell at me when I chew on them. Unfair!
Most of us cats love the feel of a plastic cord under their teeth. It is therefore best for humans to be careful with electrical cords. Store the ones you don’t use and cover the others with screens (you can find them in pet stores). If your cat persists in chewing on the strings even after applying the tart apple, take him to the vet to rule out any dental issues.
10-We really hope you find yourself another animal to demonize.
If a black cat crosses your path, you will be in bad luck. Don’t let a cat come near a sleeping baby; it will suck the baby’s breath. Cats are the favorite companion of witches and villains. It took us ages of cats to overcome all that negative (and just plain wrong) publicity. Stop spreading these lies, black cats are not bad luck. Humans should instead stick to what their species does best: bashing each other.
11-Can you stop your species from embarrassing the humans who love us?
While people who love dogs are perceived as outgoing, caring and active, people who prefer cats are derided by the offensive expression “crazy cat lady”, meaning an obsessive and antisocial person who encloses itself. It hurts us.
12-Many cats live their lives without cuddling, without learning.
Because we are so soft and cute, humans always want to hug and cuddle us. We say: approach with caution. Some cats accept cuddles, but many don’t like to be confined, even in your arms. Give us a try, but whenever we struggle or protest, put us back (gently!) on the floor. Never, ever take us when we sleep or eat. When it comes to kissing, we cats are frankly confused by your behavior. We want to teach you the feline language of love: we like to show our affection with a head butt, a face rub, a leg rub or a massage of any part of the body.
13-We are early risers, so go with it.
When we meow just before dawn, at a time when you’re probably trying to get some extra sleep before the alarm clock goes off, we’re doing what comes naturally to us. And our circadian rhythms change with the seasons, just like yours. When the days get longer and the birds and squirrels rise and strike earlier, so do we. You could feed us so that we stop meowing, but know that it will reinforce our feline behavior. If you really want to curb our calls for early attention, start by installing blackout curtains or blinds in your bedroom so the sun doesn’t wake us up. Next, stick to strict mealtimes for us: once in the morning (but not right after waking up, as we would then associate getting out of bed with eating) and once shortly before bedtime (to try to delay our hunger). Finally, be patient: you’re trying to undo thousands of years of innate cat behavior. You may have to accept defeat.
14-When you stop, fall and roll, it’s usually not an accident.
Watch when and where we screw up for clues as to why we do it, as it’s often a “hey, look at me” strategy. Does it happen when you’re on the phone, on your computer, when you put on your shoes before you leave the house? Remember that humans come into contact with many people of their own kind every day. Most cats have a much smaller audience, the people who live with us, so be generous in your appreciation.
15-When we meow constantly, it may be our cry for help.
Some cat breeds, such as the Oriental Shorthair or the Siamese, are more talkative than others. But if your cat goes from infrequent conversation to frequent conversation, he may be sick and you need to take him to the vet. Yet there may be another, less ominous reason behind our multitude of meows: attention. You humans have come to generalize that all cats are solitary and aloof creatures. Fake ! Sure, we need quiet, but we love company, especially if you’re out all day.
16-When we defecate outside the litter box, we don’t just behave badly.
When we have a urinary tract infection (UTI), we often have trouble getting to our kitten’s bathroom in time. To find out if this or any other biological issue is to blame, take us to the vet for a check up. And if a UTI isn’t the problem, maybe the box is. Cats like litter to be clean and plentiful. Change the litter box daily and ideally provide us with an open box to use; we prefer it to a closed box.