Evil Cats: Why the Bad Behavior?
Though they are so cuddly and lovable, cats also have a dark side. Anyone who loves cats (and especially those that hate them) has met a cat who must have woken up on the wrong side of the cat tree that day. Scratching, biting, hissing, or just plain old misbehaving - why do cats do this? What is the source of this bad behavior? In short, why are some cats evil?
First, it should be remembered that despite all the personification of cats, they are still animals at their core. They do not play by the rules of human society, no matter how much we think of them as people. Cat behavior, given particular circumstances, needs to be understood with reference to the kitty’s temperament, environment, and feline nature. An evil cat may really just be a normal cat responding to external stimuli in an aggressive manner. Thus, the first step of understanding cat bad behavior is looking inward and contemplating how our actions may influence the cat’s actions. Resign yourself to the fact that some compromise may be necessary between your ideals and the cats’ animalistic worldview. You are on her turf as much as she is on yours.
The Litter Box
One of the favorite tools of destruction of evil cats is the litter box and all the activities that surround it, shall we say. Cats can be trained to go in the litter box quite easily, but even the most well-trained cat may decide to relieve himself on your new carpet. Does this necessarily mean that you are sharing space with an evil kitty? Not necessarily First, rule out any medical conditions that may be affecting his or her excretory functions. If there is no medical problem, look around the cat’s environment to determine if there are any new stressors that may be affecting his or her mood. Is there a new pet in the house? Has there been some big change to his sleeping or eating arrangements? Have you changed up his routine or anything that he is used to? Because cats are drawn urinate where she smells urine, you will have to clean the area thoroughly to prevent a repeat. You might also consider making that bathroom area unattractive to your cat in some way to prevent him from going there again – one suggestion is to put tinfoil there. Do not punish the cat, however, because he or she will not be able to connect their misbehavior with your punishment. Instead, offer praise when they do what you want them to do.
Some evil cats can simply be nasty – clawing, scratching, or biting. Sometimes there is little rhyme or reason to why cats behave like this, so one of the first prevention steps is to identify the warning signs for any of this aggressive behavior and then steer clear of your kitty cat. As with litter box behavior, rule out any medical conditions that may be causing your cat to lash out. You might also misinterpret a cat playing with you as aggressive behavior. Remember that they are animals, and more specifically predators: their form of play is inherently violent, and they won’t know that they are hurting you. To fix this, redirect their aggression to toys. You can play with them aggressively, but just make it clear that attacking you is out of the question. Be firm with them if they start to act up and discontinue play immediately. Let your cat cool off and you will both be the better for it.
Another possible reason for aggression is due to cats’ territorial nature. This does not mean your pal is an evil cat; remember, they are animals – even humans are territorial! How would you react if something changed in your environment that you didn’t like? For example, cats do not like interlopers in their home – human or feline – and there are times that they don’t like to have their personal space invaded. If your feline’s behavior has gotten aggressive of late, think about changes in his or her environment that may have unbalanced him or her.
All cats do it – it’s in their nature. But scratching your new wooden chair doesn’t help their case. The simplest solution is to get a scratching post to divert their attention away from your valuables. Don’t punish your cat for unwanted scratching – remember, this won’t help. Instead, reinforce positive behavior.
If your cat is a rescue cat, something may have happened to her in her early life that has caused her to misbehave badly. In these cases, it is not evil cats that are the culprits, but rather evil humans. The more information you know, the better, as you’ll be able to prevent your kitty from being presented with similar stimuli.
The Call of the Wild
Finally, some behavior is just normal for cats, but can be controlled if detected. For instance, caterwauling (a loud wail made by cats) is due to loneliness – either they are not receiving enough human attention or they seek a mate. The first reason is easy to remedy, and the second may require either spaying or neutering your cat. Doing this may also help lower aggressive behavior, especially with other cats. When you fix your cat, you might fix problem behaviors too.
Don’t punish your cat if they kill something and bring it inside. Remember, they are hunters by nature. Instead, supervise your cat more, and minimize the amount of birds and other critters that might be within a paw’s reach of your cat.
Finally, set boundaries with your cat. If there are places they should not walk on or jump to, let them know with a firm “no.” Praise them when they behave well, and correct them when they misbehave. A strong, well-informed owner can turn what seems to be an evil cat into an angelic one.
Also, are you a dog person? Cats can sense this. If you are, I suggest unconditional surrender before you get seriously hurt.
If you'd like to learn more about cat accessories, read this article on the cat tower.