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Homecomin’: I iz out of da Pokie!

Catnip’s Jurnal Entry 12

It 3am, Do u Kno Where Ur Cat Iz ????

Woke at 3am ta me Sisfur Azeara sniffin me all ober. She old (15 years!) so she got stinky breaff, but I so tired I don eben fight her wen she start groomin me face n head. It was kinda nice rally. Don tell anyone I sez dat do – or I claimz Fake Mewz!

When she got down ta me tickl spot (I nawt tellin eben u dat very top secret info!!) it made me shreek n den she stop groomin me. Azeara tell me dey all ben so so worried abut me wen I gone. Den she scold me like a wee week ole kitten bout scarin da hoomanz. Dey wuz parently a wreck. Den she pat me on da head wit her paw n purr me bak ta sleep.

Catnip’s Jurnal Entry 13

Dream a Wittle Dream of Puss n Nip

I haz a rally gud dream. Me n Puss wuz sittin in a wittle box inside a huge box n we wuz playin a game balancin boxes. Of course I wuz winnin. It wuz so fun and I wuz sooo happy. She sez “I her Nip,” den Blue crash into us an I wokez up wit a jolt. Den I miss Puss n Blue n da gang.

I text Puss I iz home n I miss her trilling me awake in da mornin. She text back she miss me tew!! Den she text I gotta lay low n not call r text fur a bit til da heat on me escape die down. So I iz a fugitiv n cant leave da home frunt fur at lest a week r talk ta me boo. Poop! I be mad abut dat if she hadn’t promis ta set tings right asap so wez can go owt on our date night!

Still earwy, I go back ta sleep – I so tired I cud sleep a monff.

Catnip’s Jurnal Entry 14

Home iz Where da Heart iz – also snuggles n rubs

When I finally left me cat bed round mid sun I wuz greeted by me hooman servants like I wuz sum long lost King come to let dem please me. I did not object.

Dey gave me kisses n squeezed me n nattered on like dey do bout how dey so worried. Dey so sad when I gone n I must neber run oft agin. I twied to cowect dem bout where I wuz, but dey not listen. I nawt mind so much cuz dey give me all ober rubs n I fell into a purr stupor. Den dey arm lifted me to da Big Bed n we all piled in n haz a snuggle nap.

Later afur da nap I got speshal tweats n me favorit kibble. Mama eben gave me a reel sardeen to kill n devour. It wuz yummy. I iz in Heaben…. wait what iz dat anyway? I dunno actually but sum hoomans say it da best place n da Ooniverse n dat iz def were I at.

Catnip’s Jurnal Entry 15

Dere iz a Ting as Tew Much Catnip – Hoo Mew

Found owt frum da Sisfurs dat dey had no idea where I wuz all dez weeks. Dey neber got dem messages cuz dey furgot howz to charge dere fonez wit me nawt here! Nawt dat I surprised. But what rally piss me off iz dat I tole Petey ta come by n check on dem.

I callz him up n cussed him owt. He sez he furgot. Prolly cuz he use too much dat super catnip frum da pokey. But he reel sorry n he gonna mak it up ta me by bringin by a salmon he snatch frum da fish merkat cart dis mornin durin his scrap roundz. I tellz him he give me a bigger cut o da catnip contraband scheme n den we eben. I iz gonna be rich!

Den I takes nap in da sun spot n da Sisfurs came n book end me like we sum sandwitch. It funny but dey both reeked of catnip so I ask if dey find me stash while I gone. Both laffed n sez what stash like dey innocent. But I checked n me stash iz gone so I mak dem tell twuth by holding onto deyr hooman nip.

via GIPHY

 

Turnz owt eberyone so upset when I gone dat da hoomans raid me stash ta keep da gurls frum freakin. Dey ben hopped up on catnip fur weks. Dey so hung ober eben me contraband catnip jus made dem shrug.

Kno wat dat meanz do, right? Da hole time I gone dere was NO RECYCLIN in me recyclin plant. Not one box! No one did dere jobz!

I try nawt to haz panic attack.

(story continues below)

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Catnip’s Jurnal Entry 16

Perfection iz da Enemy ob Greatness – unless u iz a Cat

I practiz seff-calm wit me rootines.

I go ta me Curlin Bed n demand da hoomanz “Tuck” me into me bed and made dem do extra long rubs. Den I jumped owt da bed n demanded it agin n agin. I dint let dem off da hook eben when dey complain. Dis made me happy fur a bit.

Den I went on me roundz owtside. Cheked de mailz on da owtside post: Da garden catz be goin cwazy wile I away – Someone had kittens – Five – Mr. Raven brought hiz new chick ta visit. – A dog (!!) cased da joint n left hiz scent – yuck!

I had ta stop and groom meself all ober ta get da doggy smell off my coat. Didn’t stop til me coat wuz perfect agin.

Den I sniff da stairs one step at a time carefur nawt ta miss a ting, but da Squirrels chittering above kep breakin me focus. I Rrrrrowl at dem, dey scatter. Momentary Joy.

Back in da house I chek n re-mark all me spots: Owter Door (check), Plants 1 – 6 (check), Doormat (check), Entrance (check), Sun Spot (check), Box box (check), Curlin Bed (check), Chair (check), Wittle Bed (check), Big Bed (check), Me Bowl (check), Cat Tree Spot (check).

I enter da Recyclin Plant. Ready or not, here goez…

Werk Area (check). Eberyting looks ok so far. Office door (check). Maybe its nawt so bad. Recyclin Inbox – Oh Gawd it waaaay worse den I thought!!!

Da unopened boxes, dey staked so high I fraid dey fall on me. I get da dizzies n collapz on da floor. I alweady crisis purrin lik cwazy.

Hooman,

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Catnip da Kittin in Jail fur Pawsession – Part 3

Jurnal Entry 7 – We Haz Plan wit da Man

Been here in da pokey fur a wittle ober a week nowz, feelz like yearz. Da food suks n da boxes dey soggy n moldy. What I wuldn’t give fur a nice bowl o kibble or a nice cwisp folding box under me paws. Oooooooo da sweet smooth paper tween my teef as I break dem down. Still dreamin dat box dream ebery night…

via GIPHY

Sigh. I miss bein me own man.

Spekin o da Man, me n Puss been gettin mighty close since I been in da pokey. She brings me tweats frum home an tells me stories ta pass da time. I tink she haz crush on ole Catnip so Iz rally flirty n super charmin wit her. I tells her she so purty n dat I wans to take her owt when I gets owt hier. She like dat lots so she start heppin me plan me escape!

Yep, I turnz da guard! I so sneeky.

Jurnal Entry 8 – It be Juvvie fur yoo, Boy

It been another week r so. Dat damn bitch dog keep comin up w excuses to not be at ma A RAIN ment n da judge gettin agro. He start sayin dey needz to sendz me to da juvie hall cuz I iz a minor sumthin n haz no peeps (most cats R considered minors, cuz we R qt and tiny).

I tell dem I haz peeps, but dey meanz blood peeps. Dey right dere, I haz no blood peeps cuz I wuz street cat n me Momma – I don eben remember her. So nyway, dis meanz I haz to escape ASAP or I be sent down da river to da place were kittens get mean.

via GIPHY

Jurnal Entry 9 – Puss to Da Rescue

Da Plan is comin togeffur, finally. Puss promise me I be safe n cozy at home fore dey come fur me fur da juvvie tranzfur.

So here da plan: Ebery week da pokey braks down dere trash n trucks come ta hall it away. Da slimy n grimy goes to da dump, but dey also haz recyclin, n dat goes to a recycler.

Ya see? Az a recyclin enterprenur, I knoz all doz playas in da recyclin biz. Soz Puss got me on da trash work detail n I called dem recyclerz n conspir ta recycl Me!!

Oh, n surpriz surpriz, da trash iz also how da catnip comes into da pokey. I been smokin kind herb n breakin down boxes fur days. I loves it! So much cardboard, so wittle time….

via GIPHY

Nyway, da plan iz dat when da trucks come tomorrow to pics up da trash n drop off da catnip contraband, I be dere ta hep dem load up n Puss will distract de oder guards while da truck driber (Purty Pete, a friend o mine I knowz frum ma biz) hep hidez me under da cardboard. Puss gonna give da guards da furst o da catnip blunts ta keep dem frum seein I gone til long affer da truck leave. She sured me she haz plan to not be blamed fur ma escape, so I not wurry. I rally start to like dis gurl fur reelz, so I don want anyfing bad fur Puss. I tink I may ask her owt fur reel when all dis done.

 

Jurnal Entry 10 – Da Long Goodbye (or I Got You, Puss)

Today iz da dey. All goes well, I be home in me own cat bed tonight!

via GIPHY

I excited and maby a wittle sad. I rally make sum gud buddies here. Me n Frank got reel gud at playin checkers n Blue eben come around lately.

He see I in wit Puss so he like me now an turnz owt he really a kewl dude. We both into da same kinda Cosplay – playin like we oder animals n such. We spent one afternoon in da yard doin penguins wit white placemats round our necks n waddlin bak n forth. Eberbody loved it n laughed reel hard at us.

Made Blue grin so big, neber seen dat before! I tink I send him dis when I gets out.

Pakin me stuff n gettin ready to go. Me shift wit da trash start in 20 minutes n den I outta here! But first I gonna give Puss some daisies I found in da yard n ask her owt proper before I go…

Weeeee! She said yes, We goes ta dinner affer I gets owt, next Fursday! Ok, next entry will be frum home or bust!!

Jurnal Entry 11 – Home Agin Home Agin – Jiggity Jig

Guess what? It werked! I iz home sweet home n rollin n da clean cwisp cardboard n fresh crunchy kibbles. I eben got a ounce o da kindest catnip frum da contraband stash care o Purty n Puss. Eben better, since dis da kindest bud I eber seen, I ashk ta be put on da master delibery list. So I be gettin more kind catnip den Gawd purty soon. Maby I pass sum on to me customers, If I don use all meseff!!

Nyway, so glad to be home sweet home! Did I learn me lesson? Well, I neber smoke da herb owtside in public agin, I jus haz edibles nex time.

Or hire me a security guard. I hear Blue might get out in a few months if he makez parole he gonna need a gud job. I ashk Puss when we goes owt what she fink.

Nowz fur a long long sleep n me cat bed!

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Catnip-da-Kitten in Jail fur Pawsession Part 2

Catnip’s Jurnal

Jurnal Entry 2 – Nite in da pokey

Peeps, I iz in da big box, I ndz $$ fur bale n green, please! via GIPHY

Still stuck in jail fur partakin o da herb, still tryin to call home. Finally, after trying every conceevable position and spot in ma tiny cell I found I cud get a fone signul by hangin from da ceiling. I mediatly send a message to ma peeps.
I hopz dey leest send me sum $ fur catijuana. It srsly spensiv n here but mucho plentiful n dank af. Oh here comez a gard.

 

Jurnal entry 3 – Catnip in da Slammer fur da weekend

I spent da day looking at ma offline catporn n tryin ta get a signul agin. No luck. via GIPHY

I think da gardz R watchin me, so I hide da fone meow.

 

Jurnal entry 4 – Catbox Sunday without Boxes

I goin stir crazy. It be #CatBoxSunday n dere no boxes n site. I jonesin hard fur da sweet cardboard neath n above n all round. Duuuuuudez! I be dreamin o boxes ober hier!!!

 

Come Back Box! via GIPHY

I so bored I get ta talkin sum wit me jail mates n I start hearin about dis head cat named Blue. He s’posed be scary dude w one i n a big scar.
He run da prison catnip ring. Nyway dat wat dis mangy dude Frank tole me when I ask ’bout how dey get such powerous weed in hier.
He say, “U can fank dat Blue, man. But don, don eber lookie him in da i, cuz he kill ya sure az look at ya wit dat big i!”

 

 

via GIPHY

Leest I gots sum funds frum owtside n can buy da jail weed. Fanks me homies! Got a nice fatty ready ta blaze soon we get lites out. Oh here dey cum da gardz.

 

Jurnal entry 5  – Not a Funday Monday

 

via GIPHY

Jus got werd, ma a-rain-mint been pushed back. Dog cop can’t come til Wed. Bitch! Leest got sum time ta raze $$. SLO goin so far. Enuf fur catnip, newt fur bale. Litter! i needz dat dam signul. C’ on cat. Awww yes! Sendin’…

 

“ I here in da Big Box, but der R no boxes fur me to recycle. Pls send mor money fur bale. Free me, Catnip da Kitten! and I will sendz yoo freed jail-gron catijuana”.

 

And lost da signul. Well, hope it went cuz here com da gardz!

 

Jurnal entry 6  – Catnip gets Lucky or How I met da Man

i iz da man

 

So bored today wit da ignorant cats I locked up wit, I instigated a cat fight…

Then I gots ta talkin w dis gard cat – Pussy Pants. She a big fluffy calico w devil eyes n an executioners mask, but she ok. I tell her ’bout ma box recyclin bizness n she tease me w a burger box. She throw it in and ask me ta smash it like a professional

Actually, I woulda socked her gud den, if I hadn’t herd a rumor dat dis enormous furry Pussy waz da Man. I meanz da Real Man. Not like Blue, who turnz owt was jus da muscle on my side o da bars. My face still hurt frum where he punch me affer I fank him fur da kind bud… Yeah, dat waz da cat fight.

Listen to Frank, dat iz da lesson. But den Frank tole me dat he herd Blue don like bein fanked cuz he knos he NOT da Man. N Blue iz fraid o no onez but Her. Everyone iz. So I bein a smart kitten, put two n two togeffur n gets… I waz neber gud at maffs without QuizBooks, but u nose wat I menz.

Nywayz, long story short, I gots da WiFi passwerd n I gots da best connect a cat culd have in jailz. So I message ma peeps n tell ’em we gotz a plan ta getz me outta here, n maby even get rich!

 

“Ma Peeps, Good news – I gots WiFi. Bad News – I still in jail. Please send funds. I haz plan to escape, but needz ur hep!

 

U send fundz, I send u da best Jail Weed as fank u! More Later.

Den I gets down ta bizness makin ma plans… Sweet!

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Catnip da Kitten Goez to Jail fur Pawsession

Catnip’s Jurnal entry 1

 04/20/2019

We haz come tew da end o my Known Universe… Jk.

I was goin about my bizness, jus brakin’ down da last o’ da big boxes befur dey get bound fur frantic clawin’ in da mornin. N I say to myself: “Catnip, it 4:20, on 4/20 it def time fur me last kitty weed break o da day!” Gotta kep calm thru da trafficks home to da par-tay some how.

So I go sit utside n whips out my dandy new dry herb vape. I packs it w gooey green catnip, da gud stuff, from dat fancy catnip supplier.

 

I haz to break da boxes down befur frantically clawin' dem to complete da recyclin'

I was so ready ta kicks it after a long week o recyclin’. I took my first sweet draw, n den, all a sudden, dere dis narco bitch growling n pinnin’ me to da ground. She mussa been new to da narc k9s r she had ta make quota, cuz she dinit care wen I hissed n told da bitch it jus catnip.

Actually I say, “Bitch, wat u doin!? Dis Catifurnia, don u kno weed iz legal?!” She sur did not like dat even do da dog wiz litrally a bitch. Bitches. Dogs. Whatever. So she put me in cuffs (not da fun ones) n tooks me in to da pokey.

Dey kept calling me KerMutt da Frog like it n insult when dey takin my paw prints, cuz i iz green I guess? I tole dem, no I iz a cat. But dey jus luff n tole me I be booked. I start callin’ dem sons of bitches – cuz dey R. But maby dey din’t like dat do cuz dey stick me in wit a coupla nasty strays w mange.

Ignorin da stench, I ask da gard fur ma fone call, but he say; “cats don’t hav rites!” n “I better get comfurtable cuz da cop dog say I iz a blackmercat drug pusher n a menace!” Den he bang da bars n mek me step back.

Blackmarcat drug pusher? Me? Cumon. I jus smoking me herb, man. Stoopid son of a bitch gards dat lissun ta dirty bitch dog cops!!!

Nyway, here I iz. Jailcat. Nuthin ta do but wait til dey A Rain me. Wtf?! Luky I smugled in dis fone, no ask. No WiFi, but at least I can Jurnal ta pass da time. Wish I had da doe ta bribe a guard fur da WiFi password tho… maby if I can jus get a cell signul I can call fur hep n funds…

Free Catnip wit yoor purrchase!

Catnip da Kitten was unfairly arrested and incarcerated fur pawsession of a Class-1 edible on 4/20, a major holiday fur catnip and hooman-nip enthusiasts. Will he end up in solitary confinment? Will he come ta rule da prison?  Find owt next time Catnip finds a signal…

Meanwhile all funds fur Catnip will go towrds securing hiz freedoms!

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Cat Food – You are What you Eat and that goes DOUBLE for cats

Back in the days of Yore, when my hooman mom was young, cat food seemed simple – cats ate kibble n scraps n no one cared. They figured, dogs eat kibble and hooman food so why can’t cats – they are the same just smaller – right? WRONG!

cat eats kibble food
Kibble cat food – junk food for cats

 

The facts of cat food

Actually, cats n dogs are very different animals in spite of the fact that we both find ourselves the most common hooman furred companions. First, the dog is actually an omnivore and can eat and digest a very large range of food, including hooman food. This is partly their physiology and partly their domestication that has gone on thousands of years longer then with the cat. The cat, on the other hand, is an Obligate Carnivore. That means a cat MUST eat primarily meat to survive. Everything else is optional and potentially harmful.

Experts and vets do of course disagree on exactly what is the best food and what to avoid because after all they are hooman and they do have their own biases for various reasons. However, one thing is very clear – cats must eat meat and especially taurine – something that would naturally come from raw animal tissues – which is why all cooked commercial cat foods add a taurine supplement to make up for the lack after cooking. That is also why u can’t simply feed your cat and dog the same food. Without taurine and meat a cat would die.

Message to Vegetarians

So, to all vegetarians, please do not ever try to make your cat a vegetarian too. If you can’t deal with the fact that cats MUST eat a meat based diet, then a pet cat is not for u. Plenty of other animals can follow your meal plan, just not cats.

What to feed your cat

So, ok, feed your cat meat. What kind of meat? What kind of commercial food? Is dry ok, or should u feed wet? How about raw? All very good questions, but some of the answers might be deemed controversial depending on who you ask. Our food recommendations can be found in our cat food section.

Wet or Kibble?

It starts with this: kibble or wet? While kibble is far more convenient and less messy it should be used in tandem with wet or raw food or not used at all. This is because, while it may make your cat happy and sleek in their younger years, chances r that kibble will come back to bite them in their digestive system down the line. Imagine if all u ate was dried meat jerky. I bet u would be spending many a day groaning in the bathroom. Well, a cat’s system is far smaller and more sensitive than a hoomans.

Studies have actually shown, a lifetime of dry food can have a very damaging and lasting effect on a cat (1). It can lead to inflammation, disease and even cancer. At the very least u will find yourself with an old cat who is addicted to kibble but can’t digest it any longer and is getting skinnier and skinnier while rejecting any other food. Avoid this by simply making wet or raw food a routine part of your cats diet, either alone or with dry as a side option.

Enter grain free and raw food.

Ok, so what about all this raw food and cutting out grains? Those ideas come from the fact that animals tend to do better the closer to their natural diet that they can get. In the wild a cat would never have kibble, nor most grains, fruits, veggies, nor even cooked food. There have even been studies indicating that the problem with commercial foods isn’t just grains or dry food, but the fact that the meat is cooked – and cooked very well (2). In the wild a cat would eat mostly rodents and insects and they would be raw. So their system is designed to break down mostly chunks of meat with a little bit of carbs from the stomach of the prey. Old school commercial cat diets mostly ignored this wisdom, but the cat food industry is now starting to come up with better alternatives to basic kibble.

Need a plan? Try this one

So, what should u do? Start out with a variety of foods, because variety is also far better for your cat than one food for years. If u can’t handle raw then just go for a mix of wet foods, or a mix of wet and kibble. But make sure to choose both from quality brands and ingredients. First rule of thumb – make sure the first ingredient is a whole meat and that the rest is mostly meat, vitamins and minerals. Avoid foods high in corn, carbs or other non-meat fillers.

Wanna go Raw?

Ok, so u want to go full wild and explore raw food? Its best to start with a pre-made raw diets that include everything in a handy package – like Primal brand foods. Otherwise it can get very messy and confusing very fast. Same rule of thumb about ingredients apply.

We carry all of the above options, of course, including my favorite Primal freeze-dried Venison (raw). Everything we offer are viable species appropriate foods for your cat that have all been tested and approved by our three resident cats. We hope your cat enjoys them too!

Bibliography

(1) https://feline-nutrition.org/health/species-inappropriate-the-dangers-of-dry-food , https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2387258/

(2) https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/22003235

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Cat Toys: Cats R Green — especially when it comes to cat toys

Ever give ur favorite cat a nice toy as a present and discover that they r more interested in the packaging? Maybe it had just enough crinkle or texture to get them going, but before u know it the toy has been dismissed in favor of shredded paper or an empty box. What is going on here? R hoomans just too dense to make toys we cats really like or is something else afoot?

 

Cat Toys are green
I prefer the bag!

 

Cats R Green

I submit that your cat is trying to tell u something about sustainability, waste and their individual preferences. U can buy them hundreds of toys and maybe they gel with a few, but crumpled paper and boxes almost always pleases – for free. So maybe  fancy toys mostly meant to entertain hoomans are really for the dogs; but cats do like cat toys right? Absolutely!

What us cats really want is control. Control of our environment and entertainment. To use, reuse, re-purpose and destroy (or consume) is the way of nature – thus it is the way of cats. Toys with multiple practical or exciting uses that mimic something they’d find in nature generally are preferred (that’s why toys with catnip are winners), but the more hooman pleasing or impractical the toy, the less your cat will probably approve.

Every cat has its own likes and dislikes

Each and every cat has its own tastes, just like a hooman. One cat might like things with feathers that mimic birds or flying things, while another might prefer things that mimic snakes. Its the Hooman’s job to figure out the tastes of their cats, usually by trial and error. If your cat rejects a toy, try it with another cat. Or when in doubt – add catnip, or attach some crinkly paper. Try to think like your cat. Are they hiders who like tight safe spots – get them a nice hidey hole to replace the empty boxes. Are they excited by things that move fast? Get them toys that move or roll. Do they like interactive play? Get some hooman powered toys like wands with toys on a string or laser toys. Or if its crinkly things that start their engine, then get toys that make that same noise and can be scrunched by wee paws n teeth.

Bottom line

Getting the best toys for your cats requires you to know what they like individually and to always remember they are fierce (almost) wild creatures, not children in fuzzy bundles.

Does it look like a mouse in a cartoon, or a real mouse? Cuz cats don’t watch cartoons.

Get Da Kitty Some Cat Toys!

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The Fragile Cat Ego: Cats Rule — and Don’t You Forget It!

Kitten

Cat ego and self esteem

I’m not just blowing smoke, a happy cat is a cat that rules. We cats have egos just like hoomans and how you respond to our behavior can effect a cats lifelong self-esteem and personality. All cats are born thinking we are the Masters of our own Universe. Its best not to correct us as confusion over this can cause lasting low self-esteem issues and acting out. Keep in mind – we are tiny, u are huuuuge, so how u treat us has a big impact.

Kitten
Are U my new minion?
Good Cat Behavior Means Good Cat Parenting

Always encourage and praise your cat when they accomplish something or have good behavior. To do this timing is everything. As soon as they do something positive or have a correct response – give positive feedback. This can mean a “good girl” and/or a loving stroke. Negative feedback for bad behavior should be handled calmly, firmly and with timeliness. After the bad behavior it is too late. U must give your feedback when the behavior is happening. And don’t use anger or yelling. A firm, calm “No.” with an open eyed stare should get the message across.

It is also important to observe their reactions to your behavior. Every cat has its own rules, likes and dislikes. Its your job to suss those rules out over the course of your cats life – the sooner the better. Because your cat IS the Master of their own Universe and YOU are just their minion here to serve their needs. If they really like and /or love you, you shall become their person — emphasis on THEIR. If you are so lucky, this is a wondrous privilege. Don’t blow it with ur hooman machinations!

The importance of “cat spots”

Now go imbue your cat with the confidence and self-importance it requires. To do that here’s a hint: we are at our best the more important a part of the family u make us. So make sure u give us our own centrally located cat spots that we can own. It could be a cat designated comfy chair with their cat blanket in the living room or even better a nice cat tree or special cat fur-niture near all the hooman action. Prominently placed cat spots are important. Giving your cat its own spots helps them feel safe and confident as they observe the world around them and also lets them know that they hold a special place in that world forever.

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What’s Up Kitty — Understand and Communicate with Your Cat

Azeara Says Hi w a Look

I hear it all the time: What is that cat thinking?

It may surprise u, but we cats actually give away a lot of what we are thinking. You just don’t now what to look fur. First, we cats primarily communicate with the world and each other with body language, not our voice. We cats can and will be vocal, usually for the benefit of u hoomans (to get your verbally attuned attention). Those vocalizations also tend to be unique to every cat. So don’t expect the specific sounds of one cat to match up with another or have any universal meanings beyond the basics.

Cat shows belly
What do you want, cat?

Vocalization Basics – Your Cat is Speaking to YOU

Knowing the basics of your cat’s sounds can help you decode ur cat’s unique voice. The basic cat vocalizations are: the meow and yowl, the hiss, the growl, the purr and , and the scream. There are other sounds we can make, but they can vary. If u know these basics, u can get a basic idea of at least the tone.

The Meow and Yowl

The most commonly heard vocalization is the meow. The meow is an all purpose sound. It can mean “hello” or it can mean we want or need something and we want u to come to us and meet that need. This sound is usually the first sound a cat learns as a newly born blind kitten in order to communicate with their mother – Mama! Mama! Feed me! Wash me! Snuggle me! Its then up to u to figure out what we want, based on other clues we might give, like standing by the door or food bowl.

The warning yowl is similar to the meow but longer and more guttural. It can be used by house cats to indicate, “Hey, I really want your attention, cause I might be about to do something you won’t like!” The warning yowl is also used as a warning when a cat becomes aware of a strange creature outside. A similar vocalization, the mating yowl or call is usually used between cats when calling for a mate,

The Hiss, Reverse Sniff and Growl

Now for the negative range of sounds. The hiss and growl, are generally meant to express a range of displeasure from the serious to the mild. When a cat opens its mouth, bares its teeth and lets out a snake like hiss, u should pay attention. Think of the hiss as a warning sound that can denote: “Stop it, u scared me!” or “Ur pissing me off!” Or simply – “U annoy me, leave me alone.” There is also a gentler more polite version of the hiss that sounds like a swift exhale from their nose – a reverse sniff. It isn’t a funny sneeze – that pointed exhale is another way to gently ask u to stop whatever it is ur doing.

The growl, however, is the extreme opposite being a more urgent and stronger warning: U better stop that or I’m gonna F$%#@ do something bad! The hiss and reverse sniff r more fleeting. The growl has more staying power – and it could indicate a bite or scratch if u don’t stop – right now!

The Purr, Trill and Scream

So the hiss, reverse sniff and growl are ur basic negative responses from a cat. The purr and trill are positive sounds that mean ur cat is feeling happy or content and wants you to know it. The purr is a sound most hoomans find very comforting – which makes sense because that is part of the purr-function fur us cats. When a cat purrs they are either trying to calm themselves (in the case of trauma or stress) or they are expressing deep contentment. The purr actually acts like a full body massage of sound waves within our body – and it feels real good. What the purr means is all about context. If its while being petted – it means contentment. If u hear a cat scream and then find it purring, its for the self-healing reason instead. In the latter case, a vet visit may be in order.

The Purr is also similar to the Trill or Chirrup which sounds kind of like the Spanish Rrrrrrrr vocalized at various volumes, tones and lengths. I think of it as a projected outgoing purr rather than the usual internal purr. Regardless, it means the cat is feeling friendly and wants you or another cat to follow it, probably for play or food. This sound is rather innate as it would have been one of the first sounds we heard from our mother when she wanted us to follow her.

And that brings us to the final basic sound – the scream – just like a hooman scream – it usually means: Ouch! Something scared the cat outta me! or just HELP! If u hear ur cat scream – go find it – something is likely wrong.

So that covers the basic cat vocalizations (their are other less common sounds), but that’s only if ur cat actually vocalizes with u.

Body Language Basics – How Your Cat ‘Talks’ Without its Voice

Many cats won’t vocalize or do very little, because, as I said before, we cats mostly communicate silently. Our first language isn’t our speaking voice but our body language. We use our eyes, eyelids, ears, whiskers, fur, breath, body position and tail to ‘talk’ to each other.

If u watch two cats come into contact with each other u will likely see one of two patterns. Cats who know each other will greet each other in various ways. We might use a nose to nose tap, a mutual eye squint, a well placed sniff or mutual rubbing, or an invitation to play. Cats who r strangers will generally sit and stare at each other until one of them turns and walks away. What is going on there? We’re sizing each other up and communicating our intentions silently with our bodies. In the end, the cat who leaves is generally the cat who ‘won’ the ‘argument’ or got their way. Don’t try to interfere with this sort of interaction, u can only make the situation worse, not better.

Cat Eyes
Read My Eyes
Eyes are the Key

Ok, so lets get down to that body language and how to use it and read it with ur cats. The most important tool is probably the eyes. A cat says I’m scared, threatening, submissive, friendly or even loving with their eyes. Wide open round eyes with big pupils staring means either I’m scared or I’m threatening/hunting u. The rest of the body language should give u a clue as to which. Fur standing up so that the cat looks over puffy and/or backing away or turning sideways means scared. A cat advancing or just staring without fur standing up, especially with a swishing horizontal tail, is in hunt mode. While a friendly feeling or loving cat will squint their eyelids until they are looking through slatted eyes at the object of their affection. They might also look slightly away and back.

Cats Respond to Your Eyes Too

These two behaviors (wide open eyes or squinted eyes) can easily be copied and used by hoomans. First, make sure the cat u wish to communicate with can clearly see your eyes. This might mean removing spectacles. Now gently squeeze ur eyes down to slits and look at them like they are a blinding light. Squinting eyes will let the cat know ur friendly and non-threatening.

This is very useful when meeting new or strange cats. It also clears up a lot of confusion if u use it with ur cat when they might not be sure of ur intentions. On the flip side, pointed staring with wide open eyes can be used if u ever need to dominate an unruly cat (use sparingly!). If u want to go the extra mile and let a cat know that u really love them, then do a slow blink/eyelid squeeze. You want to slow blink at them a few times until they respond in kind with a squint or blink. If ur cat loves u they should return the gesture – eventually. Of course, don’t be offended if they blow u off, we can be moody just like hoomans.

This communication via eye is why shy cats tend to gravitate towards cat haters and run from cat lovers. They r seeing the hooman body language of looking away and squinting (stay away), but interpreting it in cat as “I’m friendly.” And when a cat lover advances on and looks directly at a cat, the cat runs away because they interpret that behavior as threatening. U can easily fix this by practicing the opposing behavior when greeting cats. Don’t look directly at an unfamiliar cat in the eyes – it makes us think u want to eat us. Look away and do some squinting or even squeeze your lids shut and then squint as u ‘look;’ at us, then we’ll relax and be friendly. Try it with ur own cat to reinforce ur bond.

Beyond Eyes — Every Part of Your Cat Has Something to Say

Now, beyond the eyes, there r the ears, whiskers, tail, fur, body posture and breath. Ears r pretty simple. They point at what we want to hear.  But beyond that: straight up indicates confidence and a good mood, drooping means uncertainty or early displeasure, flatter means less pleased, flat and straight back we r warning of or are about to attack – remove urself. Whiskers are also pretty simple. Whiskers pointing outwards means interest and openness, pulled back towards the face means disinterest and not wanting to engage. Our fur can tell u if we are freaked out or frightened by something by puffing up and standing on end – like the classic Halloween cat. Sometimes we will also puff up in the face of unknown creatures to appear bigger.

cat tail guide

The Tail Can Say A Lot

As u can see in the above image, the tail tells u many things about ur cat. A straight tail at roughly 90 degrees means the cat is feeling friendly and confident. A tail angled down and even against the backside means low confidence and not feeling friendly. A tail held out horizontally, swishing or not, means we r actively exploring or ‘hunting.’ A tail standing up but with a curl or curve (like a ?) at the top usually means we r feeling playful or friendly. If the curl is very small and at the top it denotes friendly but uncertain. A tail whipping violently or thumping (like a tail wag) is the opposite of the same behavior for a dog – it means displeasure with us cats – the more violent the more displeasure.

cat body language
With permission from doggiedrawings.net
Body Postures have Secret Messages

We cats will also express ourselves with body posture. The kitty loaf, where we squeeze our legs and feet up under our body and try to be as small as we can manage, is used to indicate submission ie. I acknowledge that I am not the Alpha Cat or dominant creature. Incidentally don’t think of submission and domination in the animal world as winning and losing – its really just a way to organize ourselves so that we aren’t always fighting over who is ‘in charge’ among our peers.

Other body postures r pretty self-explanatory. Spread out prone means confident ownership. Arched back means fear or stretching. An extended arm or two in sphinx usually means feeling pride and confidence in our place. An exposed belly means we trust in our surroundings (or u) and that we feel safe. Please note, in most cases the exposed belly DOES NOT mean we want u to touch it – we r NOT dogs – and we can and will scratch or bite u if u do. Some docile cats might allow tummy petting, but those r exceptions – do not assume.

So there u have it. Now u know all our secrets and can even join the cat-versation to a degree. Go now and talk with ur cat!

Azeara Says Hi w a Look
Whassup? Dis MY spot.

Bibliography

Meowing and Yowling, ASPCA

Understanding Feline Language = US Humane Society

Cat Sounds – Meowsic

Cat Talk: A guide to cat body language – Pet Finder