Catification

I'm taking a short break from the series about how to make Good Happy Dogs, but keep looking back as the next will be along soon- Emotional Support for Good Happy Dogs.

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Cats are territorial creatures and less well adapted to group living than humans and dogs. For example, dogs think about you thinking, cats don't think about you thinking; this cognitive difference limits social problem-solving for cats. In practical terms this means that they find it harder to diffuse awkward situations; disputes occur and can be ongoing and difficult to resolve, especially regarding access to resources, travel routes and spaces within the home. Owners might notice problems with aggression, fighting, litterbox failures, overgrooming, confidence issues, and more, that can relate to how cats perceive the home environment, the social challenges within it and their lack of ability to resolve those challenges.

Catifying your home provides walkways that give cats more choice of route as they travel through, snooze or simply watch the world go by. The way the walkways are arranged can enable house-cats to express their natural climbing behaviour, can be placed to encourage leaping and stretching, perching and balancing, and sisal covered to serve as great areas for scent marking and nail care. I believe the term catification was first coined by Jackson Galaxy whose work you might like to look at to learn more.

Why do I care about catification? My house cat Samson needs space and opportunity at home to express himself as a feline. He gets bored and frustrated, digs at the carpet, miaows for more attention than normal and is less tolerant of others in his space.  I wanted to catify to relieve his frustrations and enrich his life. Unfortunately life gets in the way and plans have been slow to materialise.

Then Viv the accidental Siberian Husky rescue arrived. And Samson needed to spend time crated or closed out of the kitchen to keep him safe while she learned how to behave with him. When he had an opportunity to interact with her he stared, mRarwled and threatened her with flattened ears and aggressive approaches. He was not a happy cat. He didn't want her in her cage, he didn't want her passing the doorway, he took offence at her lying on the front room rug. He needed some help to get along. So Viv's arrival spurred me into faster action to get the catifications in place. 

Of course catifications are not the full solution to cat-dog harmony within our home, but I intend for them to be part of the puzzle. I will let you know what other methods I'm using in future posts. 

Stay tuned for next week's blog. If you've enjoyed this post please let me know by commenting below.

 

Until next time, Lucy x