Results 1 to 11 of 11
Like Tree7Likes
  • 1 Post By CornFlakegrl
  • 1 Post By Froogy
  • 3 Post By Kittylady
  • 1 Post By gas_chick
  • 1 Post By Sleuth

Thread: What's Mittens Thinking? Make 'Sense' Of Your Cat's Behavior

  1. #1
    Elite Member sputnik's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Location
    fellow traveller
    Posts
    51,154

    Default What's Mittens Thinking? Make 'Sense' Of Your Cat's Behavior

    What's Mittens Thinking? Make 'Sense' Of Your Cat's Behavior
    September 05, 2013 1:36 PM



    Cats have come a long way from being animals charged with catching mice to treasured, adorable creatures that snuggle with us in our beds. But this relatively new arrangement is creating issues for cats and the people who live with them.


    John Bradshaw has studied the history of domesticated cats and how the relationship between people and cats has changed. He's the author of the new book Cat Sense: How the New Feline Science Can Make You a Better Friend to Your Pet, which is a follow-up to his book Dog Sense.


    Bradshaw is the foundation director of the Anthrozoology Institute at the University of Bristol in England. As an anthrozoologist, he studies the interactions between people and animals. He's also the former science chairman of the International Association of Human-Animal Interaction Organizations. He joins Fresh Air's Terry Gross to talk about how our relationship with cats has evolved over time and how toning down cats' hunting instincts will ensure them a future on an increasingly crowded planet.


    Interview Highlights


    On cats' social behavior


    "I think cats are much less demonstrative animals than dogs are. It's kind of not their fault; they evolved from a solitary animal that has never had the need for a sophisticated social repertoire in the way that the dog having evolved from the wolf had that ready-made. So their faces are just not terribly expressive, and some people read into that, that they're kind of cynical and aloof and those sorts of things. But I don't believe that for a moment. I think cats show, by their behavior, even if it's a bit more subtle than a dog's, that they really are fond of their owners."


    On purpose of purring


    "The purr is popularly thought of as ... indicating comfort and contentment. And it can be that, but signals like the purr because it is a signal, it's giving out a message and it's trying to get you to do something. They don't evolve just to convey emotions, not in the animal world, anyway. What we think cats are doing here is just trying to reassure their person or [another] cat who is hearing the purr that they are no threat, and ideally they'd like them to stand still and help them do something. So it starts off with kittens purring to get their mother to lie still while they're suckling, and it goes on into adulthood. ... It's a signal to the animals, [and] the people around them to pay attention and try to help them."


    On how our relationship with cats has changed


    "There are so many cats around the world that are kept for their mousing abilities, their abilities to keep farmyards free of mice and rats. And then, suddenly, in the last 50 or 60 years or so ... we've started having our own methods of keeping mice and rats out of cities. We don't need the cat to do it anymore."


    On the connection between playing and hunting


    "The research that we've done suggests that it's almost indistinguishable, that everything that a cat does when it's playing seems to be a part of its normal hunting behavior.


    "You kind of see dogs do this a little bit, but a lot of dog play and a lot of play between dogs and people is a much more social thing. ... The dog is using a toy as a way of interacting with a person and the toy in some sense is irrelevant it's just a piece of equipment that the dog uses.


    "In the case of a cat, we've never really found any particular significance to the human being. If you're holding a piece of string with a mouse on the end, the cat isn't so much interested in you (which the dog probably would be), but interested in the mouse on the end. So, for example, cats prefer to play with toys that in some way look like prey: They've got feathers on them or they're furry or they're about the right size for the kind of thing that a cat would safely be able to prey on. ... And cats play more intensely when they get hungry."

    On toning down cats' hunting instincts


    "Nobody has really focused on the idea of breeding a cat [to be] a good companion. Some of that has happened in dogs, but most of our cats are descended from hunters and animals that we encouraged to hunt, that we kept for their very hunting ability.


    "So we need to, somehow, tone that down a little bit. Some of it can happen by ... giving them other outlets for their hunting. But ultimately I suspect that the cat will only be ensured a future in an increasingly crowded planet if we can generate an animal [that] really doesn't feel the need to hunt. ...






    "In a way, we almost have to start again. We have to think about the cat in the 21st century. What do we want cats for? What kind of cats do we want?"


    On declawing


    "The operation involves essentially taking the ends of what we would call our fingers off. I had a personal experience of this. I had the end of one of my fingers crushed in an accident many, many years ago, and for years afterwards ... I got phantom pains in that finger. I'm a human being and I could look at my finger and say, 'That's a phantom pain. I know it's not real pain. It's annoying and distracting, but I can live with it.' ...


    "I think [if I had] eight of those going and I was a cat and I couldn't really understand what had happened to me, I suspect I would have not been happy about it. ...


    "Surgically, it's more than [just taking out the nail] because you have to take out the whole bit where the nail grows from. ... There's an ethical issue as well, I suspect, which is reflected in the codes of practice over here in Europe where declawing is illegal. ... It's regarded as being a mutilation of the animal."




    Interview: John Bradshaw, Author Of 'Cat Sense' : NPR
    I'm open to everything. When you start to criticise the times you live in, your time is over. - Karl Lagerfeld

  2. #2
    Elite Member CornFlakegrl's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2008
    Location
    Hanging with the raisin girls
    Posts
    12,188

    Default

    I think cats show, by their behavior, even if it's a bit more subtle than a dog's, that they really are fond of their owners.
    Well if her behavior is anything to go on, my cat still hates my guts.
    Bluebonnet likes this.

  3. #3
    Elite Member sputnik's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Location
    fellow traveller
    Posts
    51,154

    Default

    ^^^^
    lol
    mine's a siamese-tabby mix and his temperament is all siamese so he's a needy mama's boy, nothing subtle about him. i don't think i've ever had a dog follow me around as much as my kitty does.
    I'm open to everything. When you start to criticise the times you live in, your time is over. - Karl Lagerfeld

  4. #4
    Gold Member Froogy's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
    Posts
    1,211

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by CornFlakegrl View Post
    Well if her behavior is anything to go on, my cat still hates my guts.
    Same here! I still havent learned my lesson. I want to pet her because she is so adorable and I get bit every time!!!
    funky_chicken likes this.

  5. #5
    Elite Member Sassiness's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
    Location
    Land Down Under
    Posts
    2,939

    Default

    Cats are very expressive, in their own ways. I've been away overseas for over a month - Mum is catsitting for me. Apparently when she got home from the airport without me when I left, Alice the cat was quite perturbed. Kept meowing at the door, then coming over to her and meowing, then going back to the door, as if to say 'Yes, but where is MY mum?!" Then she sooked for a few days.

    Which is hilarious, because last time mum visited for a while and then went back home, *i* was in the bad books for coming back from the airport without nanny!

    Alice has made herself quite at home on Mum's lap now, to the point that Mum can't sit down anywhere without having a furry lapwarmer to accompany her. She still won't sleep on the bed though - I suspect it's because Mum snores like crazy, and the sound probably frightens my scardeycat a bit.

  6. #6
    Elite Member Kittylady's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2008
    Location
    Somewhere been 'General Confusion' and 'Total WTF?'
    Posts
    17,080

    Default

    My cat with the Bloke isn't a lap cat at all. I don't know whether it is because she had a rough start before we got her (three or four different homes while still a kitten) or if it is just her. I miss having a lap cat and love it when I go back to see my other girls and end up with one of them on my knee the second I sit down.

    Sassiness, when my OH works away for a few days the cat gets a sulk on with me, like I've chased him away! Then she calms down and decides that the Nom Lady isn't so bad after all, and when he gets back she tries her best to ignore him as punishment for leaving her. Thinking about it, the next time he goes away he can take her with him as she's in a climbing phase right now. She's constantly trying to run up the curtains and scale the doors to sit on top, before giving me a heart attack in case she hurts herself jumping down.

    Finally the article missed out the most important reason for anything cats do:

    shedevilang, gas_chick and Quazar like this.
    I hate to advocate drugs, alcohol, violence or insanity to anyone, but they've always worked for me. Hunter S Thompson

    How big would a T-Rex wang be?! - Karistiona


  7. #7
    Elite Member gas_chick's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Posts
    35,112

    Default

    I saw a book that we all should read last night it was called How to Tell if Your Cat is Trying to Kill You! I have three and none are lap cats usually but my oldest girl will sit on the top of the couch and groom me. I read it means she thinks I'm a big cat.
    McJag likes this.
    I am going to come and burn the fucking house down... but you will blow me first."

  8. #8
    Elite Member Bluebonnet's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2009
    Location
    Texas
    Posts
    7,737

    Default

    I used to have a co-worker whose cat would try to pull her out of the bathtub everytime she took a bath. He would totally freak out and grab her arms with his paws. She asked the vet about it and he said because cats think we are cats, they don't understand why we don't think like they do. Cats hate water, therefore, we should too.
    Cats are really just land based sharks in fur coats. - Kittylady

  9. #9
    Elite Member sputnik's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Location
    fellow traveller
    Posts
    51,154

    Default

    ^^^^
    lol

    my cat is fascinated by water, can't help but get close to it, touch it, but can't quite make the plunge. he'll sit on the edge of the tub in between the two layers of the shower curtain and play with me, paw at me, stick his paws and his head in the shower, get a little wet but not too much. every once in a while he gets up enough courage to step into the shower, and then the water hits him and he freaks out and jumps out and it starts all over again...
    if i'm taking a bath he'll lean in and chew on my wet hair. he fucking loves wet people hair for some reason.
    I'm open to everything. When you start to criticise the times you live in, your time is over. - Karl Lagerfeld

  10. #10
    Elite Member Bluebonnet's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2009
    Location
    Texas
    Posts
    7,737

    Default

    Maine Coons love water. I think some other breeds out there may, too.

    OK, here's a list of cat breeds that love to play in water:

    6 Cat Breeds That Love Water Play
    Cats are really just land based sharks in fur coats. - Kittylady

  11. #11
    Elite Member Sleuth's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Location
    Vegemite Land
    Posts
    5,324

    Default

    I have given up trying to understand my ragdoll. She follows me around like a puppy, we have meowing conversations, she is in my face staring at me when I wake up in the mornings and grooms my face and hair as soon as she knows that I'm awake, appears to adore me and yet she attacks me at random.
    Brookie likes this.
    Alicia Silverstone: "I think that the film Clueless was very deep. I think it was deep in the way that it was very light. I think lightness has to come from a very deep place if it's true lightness."

Thread Information

Users Browsing this Thread

There are currently 1 users browsing this thread. (0 members and 1 guests)

Similar Threads

  1. Random pictures that make no sense
    By Wiseguy in forum Laughs and Oddities
    Replies: 12
    Last Post: July 9th, 2009, 03:34 PM
  2. Composting toilets make cottage sense
    By Tati in forum Home and Garden
    Replies: 3
    Last Post: July 3rd, 2008, 06:03 PM
  3. Uma Thurman's big mittens
    By mrs.v in forum Famous Style
    Replies: 15
    Last Post: December 28th, 2007, 09:13 AM

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •