You wake up late, once again, and rush around the house to get ready for work. As you dress in a hurry, your cat brings a mangled catnip mouse and drops it at your feet as if to say, Its time for my favorite game! Lets go! Already late, you halfheartedly toss the mouse once - mostly to distract your cat for a moment - before you dash out the door a few minutes later.
Any cat is apt to display alarming behavior now and then - gnawing at her fur with a vengeance, for example, or racing madly from room to room with no apparent objective. Such fleeting episodes are normal and should be of no concern to her owner. But if the behavior is observed several times a day or, more alarmingly, several times an hour, it is possible that the cat is manifesting an obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD).
When two cats who were formerly tolerant of each other or even mutually bonded suddenly start fighting with each other, the diagnosis is almost certainly redirected aggression. A typical scenario, sometimes witnessed by the owner, is that two friendly cats are sitting next to each other on a windowsill, looking at the wide world outside, when all of a sudden something scary - perhaps another cat or a dog - comes into their view.
A team of researchers at the NC Museum of Natural Sciences and NC State University has launched an ambitious effort to analyze the secret lives of outdoor cats with the help of tiny satellite tracking harnesses, a 3-D printer and daily feces analysis. This could eventually include miniature cat-mounted video cameras to detail behavior of outdoor cats.
Cats can be really good friends, says Nicholas H. Dodman, BVMS, DACVB, Animal Behavior Clinic Director at the Cummings School of Veterinary Medicine at Tufts University. Two is company, and even three or more can get on.
The tendency of cats to scratch rugs and furniture often frustrates their owners. Cats do need to scratch, but they dont have to ruin the household furniture in the process.
Most people think of heartworm disease (HWD) as a disease that only impacts dogs. While its true that heartworm infection is much less common in cats than in dogs (the feline prevalence is approximately five percent as compared to 20 percent of the canine prevalence), cats most certainly do get heartworm disease.
Already under the lethal threat of poaching and habitat loss, tigers, lions and other wild carnivores are now falling victim to the canine distemper virus - which could eventually drive endangered populations to extinction.
Each year, thousands upon thousands of cats are relinquished - turned over to local humane societies or other feline-friendly organizations - because their owners are no longer willing or able to keep them. Some of these abandoned cats will find new owners. But sadly, the less fortunate will eventually be euthanized.
A kitten is born with all the brain cells it will ever have, but the brain grows in two ways: It gets bigger and it changes shape. Dendrites are specialized brain nerve cell structures that reach out to form contacts with other nerve cells. The more connections the dendrites make, the more the brain grows. Therefore, that growth is determined in large part by the types of environmental stimulation a kitten receives during the first six months of life, especially during the critical first seven weeks.