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Behavior + English

  • During exploration and play, kittens (and some adult cats) will chew on a variety of objects. Not only can this lead to damage or destruction of the owner’s possessions, but also some chewing can be dangerous to the cat.

  • In cats, excessive sucking and chewing, hunting and pouncing at unseen prey, running and chasing, paw shaking, freezing, excessive vocalization, self-directed aggression such as tail chasing or foot chewing, over-grooming or barbering of hair and possibly feline hyperesthesia may all be manifestations of conflict, and may become compulsive disorders in time.

  • There are many reasons that cats can develop such fears. Your cat may have had limited exposure to people and other animals when it was young. Socialization is an important aspect of raising a kitten.

  • House soiling in cats, also called feline inappropriate elimination, is the most common behavioral complaint of cat owners. Problem behaviors can be urine and/or stool deposited outside of the litter box, or marking behaviors.

  • Spraying is the deposition of small amounts of urine on vertical surfaces. In most cases, the spraying cat will back into the area, the tail may quiver, and with little or no crouching, will urinate.

  • Some cats are active at night, or are awake and “raring to go” very early in the morning. Since many owners are out at work or school during the day, the cat may spend the daytime hours in rest and relaxation, especially if it is the only pet in the household.

  • Scratching is a normal feline behavior. Although scratching does serve to shorten and condition the claws, other important reasons cats scratch are to mark their territory (both visibly and with the scent of the foot pads) and to stretch.

  • Most owner complaints about feline vocalization are either to do with the intensity and persistence of the vocalization, or the fact that it occurs at night or at other times when family members or neighbors are trying to sleep.

  • House soiling or feline inappropriate elimination, is the most common behavioral complaint of cat owners. The problem may be urine and/or stool deposited outside of the litter box, or marking behaviors. When cats urinate on vertical surfaces, it is known as spraying or marking.

  • Redirected aggression occurs when a cat is aroused by another animal, person or event, but is unable to direct aggression toward the stimulus. For example, your cat is sitting on a windowsill and sees another cat out on the property.



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Bridgton Veterinary Hospital is full-service, small animal veterinary hospital providing comprehensive medical, surgical and dental care. We provide a broad spectrum of diagnostic procedures through in-house testing and the use of external laboratories.


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