Click here to learn more.
Human stupidity (from the cat's point of view, that is) in misreading or ignoring body language earns more than a few cat lovers a scratch or bite from time to time -- the result of misinterpreting a cat's "I've had enough" signs.
The classic example of this phenomenon is the cat who, while being petted, "suddenly" grabs the hand that pets him with teeth and claws, to the shock and sometimes anger of the human doing the petting.
In fact, these "out of the blue" attacks rarely are. Before the biting or clawing, a cat gives out subtle (subtle to us, anyway) signs of diminished tolerance. Primary among them: an increase in the stiffness and twitching of the tail.
Often, the problem starts with petting your cat's tummy, a very vulnerable area for any animal. Your cat may even offer his belly out of love, but after you start to pet, he may become increasingly uncomfortable with the attention. Most cats just don't like tummy rubs, although exceptions to this rule certainly do exist.
Watch your cat's body signs: If he's tensing or that tail starts twitching, stop petting immediately. Not only does doing so save you claw and teeth marks, but stopping before your cat strikes also slowly builds up his trust in you and his tolerance for physical attention.
Like this article? Have a point of view to share? Let us know!
Thank You For Signing Up
for the Petwire newsletter, sending you all the pet news each week directly to your inbox.
Get the latest pet news, tips, tricks, and expert advice sent right to your inbox!
The Alaska SeaLife Center recently
welcomed a male Steller sea lion, which
is a rare and endangered species.
In his funny new video, Dr. Andy Roark
shares the ways you should not choose
your pet's health care provider.
Learn about the physical developments,
mental changes and training tips that are
important for your “teenage” canine.
We chat with a koi show expert about
what makes this big, brilliantly-colored
ornamental carp so fascinating.
Most dogs get blastomycosis by inhaling
fungal spores. The organism thrives near
lakes, swamps and river banks.
Believed to have originated in Egypt around 329 B.C., the elegant Saluki is a calm and quiet companion.
If the video doesn't start playing momentarily,
please install the latest version of Flash.