If kitty ain't happy, ain't nobody happy. Stay off your cat's sh*t list by helping him avoid these 10 things that (most) felines despise.
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1. Improper Introductions
"I can't wait for you to meet Mittens!" you say as you bring home a new friend — but Mittens is nowhere to be found. Why? Most cats are wary of strangers, and it might take a while to get comfortable around them. Be patient and never force your cat to interact with a new person if they're not ready. Mittens will show up eventually and on her own schedule.
2. Loud Noises
Fireworks, cars backfiring, vacuum cleaners — all of these are likely to send your cat scampering to the nearest hiding place. Cats have highly sensitive hearing, so loud noises may be physically unpleasant as well as startling.
3. Other Cats in their Territory
Domesticated cats are a long way from being King of the Jungle, but they've still got that territorial instinct. Take this into consideration before putting out food for strays. Even if it makes you feel like a good samaritan, your kitty may not agree.
4. Car Rides
Cats can get motion sickness just like humans, but unlike humans they can't tell you to pull over or roll down the window. Besides, where does the car usually take them? Here's a hint: it starts with 'vet' and ends with 'erinarian.' No wonder they find road trips stressful.
5. Dirty Litter Boxes
Imagine if someone came to your house, did their business, and then left without flushing the toilet. Gross, right? A dirty litter box is basically the same thing. Generally speaking, you should scoop your cat's litter box every one to two days (more often if you have more cats), and change the litter about once a week.
6. Stale Food
Your cat probably has a distinctive "I'm hungry!" meow, but how many times have you gone to refill their bowl only to find it still half full? It's annoying, but cats can be picky eaters, so toss the leftovers and rinse the bowl before you refill it, or switch to a regular feeding schedule with smaller portions.
7. Taking Medication
This one is a no-brainer. Nobody likes taking medication, unless it's a gummy vitamin. Check out our article for tips on giving your cat a pill.
8. Aggressive Petting
Credit: Real Grumpy Cat/YouTube
Most cats prefer certain kinds of affection. Gentle chin scritches are usually acceptable, as is a soothing stroke on the back, but steer clear of the tail and the tummy, no matter how tempting, and make sure to keep an eye on your kitty's body language to avoid getting scratched or bitten.
9. Getting Wet
Cats versus water: it's a tale as old as time. While there are some exceptions, most cats hate getting wet. Luckily, cats are pros at grooming themselves, so they don't need regular bathing.
10. Being Ignored
Cats have their own agenda, and when it's time for cuddles, they will let you know. If they think you're slacking off, they may take matters into their own paws by climbing into your lap, blocking your line of sight, headbutting you, or meowing up a storm. So put that laptop aside for a minute and give your cat some lovin' - it's good for you!
Main image credit: weknowmemes