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Crafty Cat Behaviour and Feline Psychology forum. A helping hand to understand your pet. The cat behaviour section has a number of resources to help you understand more about your cat. From cat behaviour books, behaviourists and cven cat behaviour courses that will help you understand feline psychology. The reference section will help you find a particular topic and give you a cats instinctive and typical behaviour.

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crafty cat behaviourBehaviour > Reference

Cats make wonderful pets - they are self reliant, self entertaining, independent and clean. However, as they increase in popularity so do their problems.

Until fairly recently, cats were purely outdoor animals who returned home for warmth, security and food. Generally the outdoor cat's preoccupations were natural feline pursuits being - hunting, walking, stalking, patrolling and marking. As a consequence outdoor cats have very few behavioural problems. However, behavioural problems are becoming more and more frequent as the cat adapts to an either partial or total indoor existence and sharing outdoor territory with other cats. Being a very adaptable animal they are increasingly being put into the position of 'fitting in' with their human owner's lifestyle. Therefore these problems are often a result of the owner's lack of fully understanding the cat's natural needs and he often interprets the cat's behaviour as abnormal when it is in fact not.

Humans have a general tendency to misunderstand cause and effect.

The owner will often chastise a cat for something it has done during the day, for example, when the owner has been away. The owner, on arriving home, sees what the cat has done and will punish the animal in what ever way he deems suitable. The cat, next day repeats the 'crime' and the owner upon seeing the damage caused in his absence, again will punish the cat. The cat, who was, pleased to see its human companion is suddenly the recipient, yet again, of a tirade of aggression from the owner, is unable to understand why, becomes frightened of it's owner due to these sudden and inexplicable outbursts. It therefore learns to avoid the owner and his sudden unpredictable outbursts because it has no mental association with the 'crime' it had committed earlier.

The result of this situation leaves the owner feeling unsuccessful as a cat trainer, and with the relationship between the cat and the owner compromised and deteriorating the cat will do its best to avoid its owner in future.

Cat's live in the present and neither reflect on the past nor look forward to the future. Therefore a cat's perception of time and events is dramatically different to that of a human. The cat learns to behave in a very different way to that of a human. Cat's may inherit a certain behavioural capacity, but its normal development is through learning experiences. Many owners therefore consider that their cat is untrainable which is not accurate.

Physical punishment such as, bursts of bad temper, deliberately frightening or smacking is of little value in training cats - at best it will only stop a behaviour when the owner is present, at worst it will lead to the cat avoiding it's owner.

The reason for your cat's behaviour maybe due to an underlying medical reason. If you are concerned about your cat, always consult your vet or a cat behaviourist for professional, qualified advice.
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