How To Have Happy Friendly And Social Cats
Cat socialization is beyond important. Not only so you have happy, friendly, and social cats, but for the sake of family and friends who visit you. It is no fun for anyone, least of all your feline companion, if they are running away, hissing or hiding. We have all heard of this type of feline behaviour, and it is upsetting for everyone involved.
Start Small: This means across-the-board; small area, short time, quiet, and one person. You want to make the whole experience as easy and simple as possible. A small area is less scary and is best for cat socialization. If your pet is extremely fearful you may do best dedicating a small room for them for a few weeks. Feline behaviour can be changed but it takes time to transform them to social cats. Make sure they have fresh water, a litter box, toys, and something soft that smells like you, like an old t-shirt. Start with a few minutes and add time slowly to match their comfort level.
Start With A Reward Every Time: Before every session, feed your cat a treat. It can even be just a teaspoon of their regular food. Speak softly, and lovingly, and if they are ready, pet them. Feather wands are a great way to pet, play and start cat socialization without scaring them with your touch. Feline behaviour changes need to go at a pace they are comfortable with, so start with just a few minutes if need be. Having social cats takes time and patience, and it is better to leave them wanting more attention than pushing things too far.
End With Food Or A Treat: In an ideal world, you would have sessions as often as 6 times a day. If you can only manage twice a day, make the end of the visit feeding time. Any extra time you can spend, end with a tasty treat. You’ll soon see that with a food reward to start and finish, the feline behaviour will change to looking forward to seeing you.
Increase Your Time: To have social cats, you need to let them set the pace, so lengthen your sessions a little each time. Add cuddling when they’re ready. Always speak to them and use their name often. Pretty soon, you’ll be moving onwards and upwards in cat socialization.
Out And About: Once feline behaviour has changed to enjoying and looking forward to time with you, add on. Move to other rooms of the home for play time and snuggling. Introduce them to other people, one at a time, and with lots of pats, a treat and kind words.
Social cats make for a happier home for everyone. All it takes is time, patience, and a place for your companion to feel safe. Make sure they associate your visits with treats at the beginning and at the end, and with kind words and loving touches the whole time. The time you spend on cat socialization will reward you for years to come.