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Understanding Your Cat’s Personality

Updated on September 18, 2011

cat behavior

How to Understand Your Cat

Regarding the small margin of physical difference between cats, their individuality is quite overwhelming. They're great imitators, and would assume the features of their environments. In a mixed household of dogs, cats, kids, and adults, they'll absorb something from each of these. They can learn from dogs to scratch on the door when he wanted in or out. Some cats establish a connection between the opening of a door and the door knob, then stand on his hind legs and stretch his long, slender body till he could reach the knob and rattle it. There are instance of cats that can turn on a light switch when they are alone after dark, or can ring the doorbell when they wish to come in. Some will even utilize the conveniences of modern plumbing for their personal relief.

In most cases wherever a cat has a warped personality or a fierceness that can't be curbed, there is generally a reason, and more likely than not the reason is that the cat is left behind for long periods of time. Many cats, actually most of them, seem to adjust to this situation as they do to everything else, but it does appear to be the Achilles' heel in the cat mind. They love companionship, or the presence of somebody else in the house. The less they're left alone, the gentler and more docile they become. This is a good reason to have two cats instead of one.

Inside your cat's highly developed personality are special communicative skills. As your accord develops, your cat would tell you what he wants. If you're in one room, and what he desires is in another, he would meow to get your attention and then lead you to it. He might take you to the refrigerator or the front door. He would make his needs very clear. As your communication becomes more polished, the sound of his meow would tell you what he needs before he shows you. His body language speaks for itself. When you hold your cat against his will, or in an uncomfortable position, his tail would begin to twitch—his way of telling you of his discontent. When he walks through the room having his tail up over his back and the tip turned under, he is proud of with himself and the world at large. When he is about to engage in combat with another animal, his ferocity will be conveyed through guttural hissing and an arched back. His fear at this moment is signaled by a bushy tail.


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      Ghost32 6 years ago

      While I would disagree that the margin of difference in physicality is "small"--we've had some wildly differing cat-bodies around here--the pesonality and intelligence is indeed a force unto itself.

      Our younger cat, Gato (duh!), one year old, is flat-out incredible.

      Example: Every so often, my wife will swap the food dish for one or the other of our two cats, replacing one that's got leftover dried food stuck to it with a clean bowl. She then fills the dirty bowl with water and sets it outside to soak.

      This afternoon, noticing that her latest effort had successfully drowned three black beetles and three small but nearly as black butterflies, I dumped the contents of the dish, brought inside, and placed it on the floor in the kitchen (not a feeding place).

      When I returned from cleaning the cat litter in Pam's bathroom a couple of minutes later, Gato was drying the bowl. With a dustcloth he'd found hanging on the Gazelle exercise machine.

      Really. He had the folded cloth in the bowl and was moving it around with his paw.

      Voted Up, useful, and interesting.