Top 5 Cat Problems You Need to Know
Cats are precious and adorable. However, just like with any new family member you get, there will always be a chance of facing negative issues that might make you feel momentarily sad, angry, or even resentful toward your cat.
While those fleeting feelings are normal, you don’t need to endure them. By understanding what exactly causes those cat problems, you can find a lasting solution that will ensure that you and your feline companion lead a forever happy life.
That said, let us discuss the most common cat problems and what you can do to permanently solve them…
Cats are generally inclined to use litter boxes to contain and bury their excrement. However, there are times when you might notice that your cat left a trail of sand around the house. Maybe she even pooped outside the box or went about marking furniture and walls with pee.
There are numerous reasons behind this issue, but these top the list:
- Sandy litter – get a large mat such as the Easyology Premium Cat Litter Mat that helps dislodge sand stuck in your cat’s paws.
- Unclean litter box – scoop and change litter once a day, and clean the whole box once a week.
- Litter box placement (no privacy or escape routes) – put the box somewhere your cat can have privacy without being blocked on all sides by walls, furniture, or other obstacles.
- Limited litter boxes (for multiple-cat household) – always add one litter box more than the number of cats (i.e., 4 boxes for 3 cats).
- Change in litter or material (carpet, wood, etc.) preference – find out your cat’s preference in litter and texture, and slowly re-introduce your cat to one that matches her preference.
- Stress (moving, new family members, etc.) – comfort your cat and make her feel secured in its place in your home and heart through regular play bonding.
- Illness – have your vet check your cat for urinary tract infections or blockages.
- Unspayed/neutered – have your cat checked by the vet before booking an appointment.
Cats love scratching, but no one loves cats scratching our equally precious furniture. The easiest way to solve this cat problem is to give your feline alternative scratching materials. That means buying for or making scratching posts and boards in different areas of your home. If you go the DIY route, consider using thick cardboard and tough sisal rope.
Once the scratching posts are in place, lure your cats to it by using treats and toys or trying to scratch them yourself. Gently discourage your cat when she tries to scratch furniture again, and instead lead her to a nearby post with a tasty treat.
Cats are often thought of as aloof. However, numerous studies have shown that they actually prefer companionship and form strong bonds with people and animals they continuously interact with.
So your cat avoiding socialization by hiding or showing aggression is actually not normal. Here are some things you can do to alleviate the fear and anxiety that make them separate themselves from you and your family:
- Cat hiding – block all possible hiding places including spaces under furniture and appliances. Close cabinets to prevent them from being used as caves. After, isolate your cat in a smaller room, encouraging her to see and move around. Slowly, lead her outside and to other rooms with treats or toys. Do this several times a day, every day, until your cat becomes comfortable in roaming around and “owning” the house.
- Aggression – as early as possible, discourage your cat from playing rough with you. A stern look and warning, along with avoidance, can help this cause. Don’t feed her fear by beating or spraying her. Instead, redirect her attention by playing with toys. Don’t overstimulate her with too much petting, and if you’re adding a new family member, make sure the introduction is gradual to avoid a bloody fight.
Felines of all shapes and sizes are nocturnal predators, and they will almost always be up at night prowling and playing out of boredom. However, their night escapades don’t need to be an obstacle in your getting a good night sleep, especially if you follow these tips:
- Play until exhaustion – your cat is up because he or she has lots of energy left. Make sure all those energy is spent by playing thoroughly before bedtime. Use feathers, mice, balls, and ribbons. Try hide-and-seek or do some running exercises until your cat gets tired—the kind wherein she still wants to play but can’t even get up.
- Install different types of toys – once you have gone to Dream Land, your cat is left to her own devices. Make sure she doesn’t get any bad ideas by putting up toys that she can play with. Small stuffed toys, feathers, and balls will do the trick.
- Don’t get up – this might be hard to do, but it’s necessary. Unless you believe that your cat is hurt, you must ignore her calls. Eventually, she will settle down and take more naps until sunrise.
Obesity is a serious problem in both humans and cats since it hinders movement and causes more illnesses. To determine and appropriately reduce and monitor your cat’s weight, you can employ the following methods:
- Go for a check – make sure your cat is overweight from excessive food consumption and not an illness. Also ask for professional advice regarding your cat’s diet.
- Limit and schedule meals – don’t “free feed” your cat. Schedule small portions of food, preferably wet or a combination of dry and wet food, two or three times a day.
- Consider toys and dispensers – if your cat gorges the food the moment it’s given to her, you might want to use specific toys and considers that challenges your cat, making her solve puzzles to get the food as reward.
Cat problems aren’t something that pops up overnight. They are generally developed over time, by their immediate surroundings, including previous owners and you. Seeing problems doesn’t mean you should just give up; that’s not what family does. Embrace your cat’s flaws and learn his or her desires and fears to secure harmony, peace, and love in your home.
Have you dealt with cat problems we weren't able to cover here? Tell us how you fixed the problem and what tips you have for cat owners experiencing the same in the comment section below!