Admit it, we feel very privileged and flattered when our cats choose to sit with us. They know just the way to our hearts, but do you know the way to your cat’s heart?
I really can’t think of a more soothing, pleasurable sound than that of my cat’s super-contented purr. So here are 7 ways to your cat’s heart:
It goes without saying that high quality nutrition and proper vet care are essential in caring for our cats, but how do we show them how much we love them in a way that they will appreciate and understand?
It’s really all about getting to know your own cat. By building a trusting and respectful relationship and providing them with an environment where they feel safe and loved.
Here are six ways to show cats how much they mean to you.
1. BE AVAILABLE
- Simply by being in the same room gives them the opportunity to come to you for some attention.
- Gently talking to cats is also a great way to bond. They may even begin to recognise certain words, but even if they don’t, it gives them the chance to respond in their own way.
- If you’re out the house for most of the day, make sure you spend a few minutes playing together before you go out and shortly after getting home.
- Leave some toys out while you’re away and somewhere high to perch on and look out the window. Most cats love to watch the world go by.
2. LET YOURSELF BE CLAIMED
Although cats may appear to be solitary creatures, they generally do enjoy company and like to feel accepted and loved.
- The smarming (bunting) behaviour of cats, gently rubbing their cheek or head to tail along your ankles or outstretched hand, is their way of showing you affection and marking you as their own. By simply allowing this is a sign of your acceptance and love.
- To encourage this behaviour, hold out your index finger at your cat’s eye level a short distance away and if your cat feels so inclined, you will surely be claimed.
3. BUILD THEIR TRUST
- Cats feel vulnerable when asleep. When they choose to sleep next to or on you, it’s a sure sign of affection and trust. Letting your cat sleep close to you, no matter how uncomfortable it is, is your way of showing your affection.
- While sleeping they may expose their tummies without realising it. Some cats are OK with us petting their tummies but most aren’t, so proceed with caution before doing so.
4. MAKE THE FIRST MOVE
Your cat may appear distant and aloof but could actually be waiting for you to make the first move.
- Some cats run away when you approach. If that happens, leave them to it and wait for them to come to you when they’re ready. When they do decide to show an interest, come down to their level and let them sniff your hand first. Once they’ve relaxed try and touch them on their back. If you’re presented with flattened ears you can take that as a sign that your technique needs some work.
- If a gentle purr or rubbing your hand is the response then you’ve got it just right and keep going.
5. PLAY TIME
Cats love to play. Find out what kinds of things your cat likes to play with. They do tend to bore quickly, however, so split your playtimes into short, frequent sessions, but never force play time.
- Cats instinctively like to hunt so chasing games are fun for both of you. Watch your cat fly up walls trying to pin down the little red dot of a LASER POINTER or hunt the feathers of a WAND TOY.
- It doesn’t have to be shop bought, home-made toys like a ping pong ball threaded onto string or a scrunched up ball of paper can be just as entertaining.
- SCRATCHING POSTS are a sure winner for the cat that likes to climb and sharpen their claws on your spotless furniture. A multi-level scratcher with a toy attached will be just the ticket to keep them entertained and claws sharpened to their liking.
- For the cat that likes to hide and pounce, a cardboard box on its side and a moving toy pulled along in front of it will do the trick.
- Sprinkle some catnip on her favourite toy or scratch post for added enjoyment or plant a catnip plant in the garden for her to roll in and chew on.
6. PERSONAL SPACE
Even the most sociable of cats will enjoy having some ‘me time’ in a peaceful and quiet spot.
- Make up a quiet area for sleeping and lounging. There are lovely CAT BEDS available to buy or simply re-purpose your old blankets, bedding and pillows.
- The LITTER BOX should be in a quiet, private but accessible place. If you have more than one cat, add one extra litter box i.e. 3 boxes for 2 cats, to help prevent any “turf wars.”
- Set up feeding and drinking stations in quiet places where your cat will feel safe. For multi-cat households, have an extra bowl of food and water out to avoid competition and bullying.
7. EDIBLE TREATS
This is more for us humans that love to show our love through giving edible treats. We get a kick out of watching our cat’s excitement for meal times. There are healthy options, but feed with a frugal hand.
- Feed a treat that is healthy and well balanced and is specifically made for CATS. No human treats here!
- Try a treat that offers a health benefit like DENTAL CARE.
- If your cat eats a dry food then you can treat her with a taste of premium WET FOOD.
- Remember to adjust her daily feeding amount though to avoid her becoming too cuddly.
Every cat is different and some are more affectionate than others but most do love to be at the receiving end of our love and affection, as long as it’s on their terms. More importantly, though, by giving them a home where they are well cared for, feel safe, loved and respected is the ticket to your cat’s heart.
Tell us what you do for your kitties that they love, we’d love more ideas.