Outnumbered

How do the number and size of potential prey affect choices made by cats? Math — we all do it on some level (even if we don’t like to!), including other animals. For most animals, the most obvious and well-established form of numeracy is quantity discrimination, or the ability to tell a larger amount of …

Problem-solving and “pawed-ness” in cats – is there a relationship?

Most humans are right-handed (although as someone who lives with a lefty – DEFINITELY not all!); have you ever wondered if your cat also has a paw preference? I’ve previously blogged about studies of handed- or pawed-ness in cats, and its potential relationship to breed. It turns out that science is very interested in which …

Whisker stress: Science asks if it is real

About three years ago, a NY Times article drew attention to a problem plaguing cats around the world – a condition called “whisker stress” or “whisker fatigue.” Whisker stress is described as an unpleasant sensation caused when a cat’s whiskers touch the side of the bowl as they eat or drink. In the NY Times article, …

A new study looks at what cats prefer when it comes to scratching!

Furniture scratching by cats is one of those things that falls into the category of “normal feline behavior that bothers humans.” Scratching is an essential feel-good behavior for cats that allows them to stretch their back muscles and mark their territory (both visually and through the scent glands in the paws). Cats often scratch human …

Mobile Vetting during a pandemic: Dr. Kris Chandroo

Four years ago, I met Kris Chandroo – a veterinarian with a passion for cats and low-stress handling (not to mention also a scientist and musician)!! I interviewed him previously on my blog about his program (Stress to Success) on medicating “challenging” cats. We became fast friends, and since then it’s been exciting to watch …

Is it time to ditch the “cone of shame”?

Has your cat or dog ever had to wear a “cone of shame”? Also known as an Elizabethan collar (or an E-collar), and resembling more of a lampshade, these devices are routinely prescribed by veterinarians to prevent our pets from scratching themselves, biting at sutures, or otherwise harming themselves. Apparently the term “cone of shame” …