Category: Cat

Scratch This, Not That!

Cats scratch for many reasons such as nail care, exercise, tension relief, and communication that includes both physical and chemical messages (DePorter, 2019). Scratching behavior is so innate that even cats who have undergone partial digital amputation, also known as declawing or onychectomy, still attempt to scratch. An individual’s mental and physical health is impacted by their ability to express this normal and healthful behavior. Unfortunately, cats may target items that their owners are unhappy with them scratching…..

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Training Cats to Become Therapy Cats

“I’m so happy to see my favorite cat!” the older gentleman said as Rainy and I entered his room at the senior retirement community. He held out his shaking hand to pet Rainy and said that he had been feeling down and in need of company. After he had stroked Rainy a few times, I asked if he wanted me to place her on his lap. Upon hearing this, he smiled broadly and nodded. I placed Rainy on his lap, where she immediately curled up….

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What Are We Going to Do With These Cats?! Case Studies in Difficult-to-home Shelter Cats: Murray

Murray was probably the scariest cat I had met in my five years of working one-on-one with shelter cats. The handsome 5-year-old neutered male Nebelung (a breed I’d never heard of before!) was surrendered by a married couple who was going to have a baby. Although they loved Murray very much, the couple knew Murray was aggressive toward strangers, and they were afraid of how he’d do with a new baby.

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How to talk about….

Everyone has different strengths in how they communicate with clients, and one way to approach a situation won’t work for everyone. In our “How to Talk About…” series, IAABC members talk about the strategies they use to approach tricky situations in their behavior work — offering a diverse array of perspectives so you can add more to your behavior consulting toolbox!

This issue’s topic is, how to address situations where it’s not possible to create a consistent environment for behavior work. The two scenarios reflect situations many of you will be familiar with in your work with in-home clients or in shelters.

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