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Thread: Am I qualified to own a cat?

  1. #11
    Up Where They Belong SurvivorGirl's Avatar
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    1) How hard is it to train them "not" to scratch on furniture and bedding and is it really horrible to declaw them?

    You can use a squirt bottle to train them not to scratch furniture. They don't like it AT ALL, so if you do it enough times, they'll probably stop. And if you have a scratching post for it, you can get catnip and put it on the scratching post. It should work. And about the declawing thing, I really don't think it's a good idea at all. If the cat were to escape and get attacked by a dog, they'd be in trouble.

    2) How hard is it to really give them a bath? brushing?

    I don't give my cat a bath, but I would imagine it's pretty hard to do it. And my cat loves brushing and the flea comb.

    3) Do they easily go to the litter box?

    Yes. Before we got my cat, he was a stray. When we brought him home, he found it and used it with no problems, and we haven't had any problems with it so far.

    4) Do they really find delight in houseplants?

    Yes. My cat likes to chew on those little things of grass you get at the pet store.

    5) how much do they really punce around and jump on shelves and stuff?

    A lot. He gets on top of things where he's not supposed to be, like fish tanks, so the squirt bottle works good for that too.

    6) If they try and play too rough, is there a good way to train them not to bite or claw?

    Squirt bottle.

  2. #12
    FORTfruity applesauce's Avatar
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    I have a love/hate relationship with my 12 year old cat. Overall he is a really good loving kitty. Great with the kids....even with my nearly 2 year old daughter who won't leave him alone. When he has had enough, he will make a big meow and swat her with his paw but never scratches her. I spent years trying to teach him not to claw things. Nothing worked, not the spray bottle (he will keep scratching while you spray him ), refuses to touch a scratching post, etc.

    When we moved into our new house a few years ago, kitty freaked out and peed all over everything including a brand new Britax car seat we had purchased for our daughter. Unfortunately, my husband didn't notice it until he went to load it in the car so we could bring the baby home from the hospital. When he came to roll me and our daughter out of the hospital room and told me about the "damaged" car seat and how bad it smelled, I started sobbing like a mad woman and cried the whole way out of the hospital. When I got to the car, it was infused with cat urine oder. I started yelling, "I'm going to kill that cat! Why didn't you go buy a new one! I can't put my baby in there!" What a scene from a quiet and demure person like me. Instead, I kicked kitty out of the house and didn't talk to him for a year.
    Now he is an outdoor cat and we are all happy.

    The best part about cats is they really are loving animals, easy to care for and great with kids. My son is responsible for feeding the kitty everyday and giving him fresh water. It has been a good experience for him to have simple chores to do and learn responsibility.

    Good Luck with your decision.

  3. #13
    An innocent bystander nlmcp's Avatar
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    1) How hard is it to train them "not" to scratch on furniture and bedding and is it really horrible to declaw them?
    2) How hard is it to really give them a bath? brushing?
    3) Do they easily go to the litter box?
    4) Do they really find delight in houseplants?
    5) how much do they really punce around and jump on shelves and stuff?
    6) If they try and play too rough, is there a good way to train them not to bite or claw?



    1. We had a hard time with one adult cat we adopted. She clawed everything. Tried the spray bottle, which simply meant she waited until we weren't around. Our present cat, adopted at 5 years old is declawed. She seems fine, has always been indoors. Is scared to death of the outdoors.

    2. We have had long hair cats. Baths are not fun but needed a few times a year. Brushing depends on the cat. Cat #1 was horrible to brush, she weighed a whole 6 pounds and would fight tooth and nail. She had to be sedated to be groomed. Cat #2 complains, but does nothing when brushed or bathed.

    3. Ours were adults so I have no idea about litter training. They
    have both had times when they wouldn't use the litter box. Cat#1 was upset and disgusted by the arrival of these baby things that interrupted her time with her favorite person in the world (my husband) so she peed on all the baby things she could reach. Some Buspar in a kitty dose took care of that. Plus when she was sick a couple times, that was the first sign was peeing where she was sleeping. Antibotics stopped that. Cat #2 has been a challenge. She likes a perfect litter box, in the right spot but of course can't tell you where that is. So she peed on the carpet a few times, but I'm hoping we have that now worked out. Simple solution works great on the cat pee smell.

    4. House plants= cat toy.

    5. Playing time depends. Cat#1 liked to play "stalker" and her victim was usually me. She also liked to race like crazy around the floor several times a day. Loved to play fetch with grapes Was only on the table or counter tops to smell around or sit and feel superior to the rest of us. Cat#2 loves string or anything that could be string loves balls too. Would rather die then play fetch.
    Cat nip is a great kitty drug.

    6. The only person Cat#1 bite or clawed was me. She worshiped my husband and never did a thing to the kids. I on the other hand was "the other woman" and was considered fair game I guess. I was also the chief brusher and washer and spray bottle holder. Cat#1 never even clawed the dog, she would just smack her around with her paw. Cat #2, no biting at all. I can't say she is super friendly but she is warming up to us.

    It's hard to say kitten vs adult cat. Kittens are fun, that what we had growing up but it can be a bit of a hassle. Adult cats, well, find one that seems friendly otherwise they aren't as much fun for the kids.
    I could go east, I could go west, it was all up to me to decide. Just then I saw a young hawk flyin' and my soul began to rise. ~Bob Seger

  4. #14
    The race is back! John's Avatar
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    We took in a stray last year who was declawed on the front paws. I'm not sure we would have taken her in if she wasn't. Although I probably would have, I'm a big softie when it comes to animals.

    She doesn't bother our plants at all, which is good. She likes to sleep under the big one in the corner, but she doesn't eat it or destroy it.

    She's used her litter box 100% of the time ever since the moment we brought her in the house. Even when we've had to move it temporarily, she's found it and used it.

    We've never bathed her - you just don't bathe cats, they have oils in their skin that help to de-dirt themselves, and they constantly clean themselves. If you have a long-haired cat, that can present a hairball problem, though.

    Our cat will always find the oddest places to sleep. Above our top cupboards in the kitchen. On top of the hutch in the bedroom. Balanced on our headboard in the bedroom, looking down at us while we sleep. On top of my wife's freshly-washed sweater on the dining room table, air-drying to avoid shrinkage. You get the picture

  5. #15
    Staying Afloat speedbump's Avatar
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    As far as keeping the cats off furniture and scratching, I wrap aluminum foil around the edges. For some reason, cats don't like the feel of their paws against it. I'm also against declawing.
    You got to cry without weeping. Talk without speaking. Scream without raising your voice.- U2

  6. #16
    Resident Single Gal erin_dye's Avatar
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    Cats like to jump to high places to get a better view of what's going on in the room.

    Also, as animals that originated in the desert, cats are naturally inclined to use a litter box. It is a throwback to when they used to "go" in the sand. This is not something that needs to be taught (except on rare occasion, like what I am dealing with, but that's another story.) All you should have to do is show them where the litter box is and they will use it.

  7. #17
    Premium Member Pansygirl's Avatar
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    I had outdoor cats growing up.
    Never gave them a bath. From what I remember they are pretty independent. I never had an indoor cat so I'm not much help there.

    Good luck with whatever you decide . It sounds like you are getting some great advice.
    Smile it makes people wonder what you are up to.

  8. #18
    MIA, RIP, or Busy...
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    Wow! Thanks for all the wonderful information. I love the fact that cats have such diverse personalities. And, I like the differing opinions everyone has. About the declawing thing, so many people have told me to declaw because I like my furniture , but after reading about the procedure at various sources, it does sound . I'm a big weany when it comes to stuff like that. Has anyone ever tried "softpaws" (little plastic covers basically that go over the claws)?

    I am going to the SPCA today. I think the kids and I have decided on a beautiful white kitten about 3 months old and his name is going to be Frosty (the snowman ). He has to be neutered so he's not going to get to come home for a few days.

    Thanks again!!!
    A Bachelor fan til it dies a slow death and oddly enough, A Rock of Love fan...finest hair extensions from Europe and all. ;-)

  9. #19
    Leo
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    Any advice on how to hasten toilet training? We've got a litter of four month-old kittens, and the two smaller ones aren't that good about using the litter box yet.

  10. #20
    Rude and Abrasive Texicana's Avatar
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    I'm no cat expert, but I think 4 month old cats (or dogs, for that matter) should already be housebroken by that time, Leo Houston, we have a problem!
    " I look like Nigella Lawson with a $#*!ing hangover."

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