Weekly article archive

The following questions and answers have appeared in my weekly column in the Albuquerque Journal since July, 1996. Each week a new one is added. You'll find information on the physical and behavioral maladies of dogs and cats and a few other species too. I invite you to use the search feature to find the specific answer that you and your pet need.

Cats Who Attack Family Members

Does your cat seem to be playing but then viciously attack your hand? Have you tried water, newspaper swatting and hollering, and all that does is make it escalate? Cats are predators. They are supposed to be attacking and biting; but while you shouldn’t be the victim, for a cat who lives indoors, you may be…

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Cats Who Attack Visitors

Cats who attack strangers are not happy campers; they can also be dangerous. Your first priority must be to protect everybody from injury. While teaching the virtues of nonviolence it’s also important that your cat’s behavior not worsen. The two big reasons for cats to be hostile toward visitors: fear and territorial aggression. Fear Aggression…

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Fighting Between Neighborhood Cats

We love our kitties because they’re gentle and cuddly. Of course there has to be a flip side too. Whether confrontations are personal or on either side of a window, neighborhood cats can create serious angst. The bloodcurdling shrieks and squalls of cats at war is clear evidence that few feline conflicts have win-win solutions.…

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Fighting Among Household Cats

Relationships among multiple indoor cats could devolve into a slugfest. The head banana may lurk in the shadows, pounce, and scare the snot out of an unsuspecting subordinate. Wounds and abscesses can be lanced and irrigated but the fear can last a lifetime. Be observant. Watch for one cat blocking access to the litter box.…

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Which Cat Is To Blame?

Cats who urinate in bad places can make themselves unfun to live with. It’s a problem you want to correct early not only because bad habits become established quickly but for cats, the scent of old urine is a means of intercat communication. If you have a few cats a political debate can degenerate into…

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Outdoor Urine Marking

Many cats who spray urine on walls and curtains come by their bad habits quite naturally. Beyond the unmet needs of some indoor kitties the smell of urine from outside cats can be a major motivator. Urine spraying is a normal part of feline communication. Most people wisely reduce the risk by having their cats…

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Why Cats Make Indoor Messes

If your cat is leaving urine surprises around your house you’re not alone. There is a veritable mob of urine haunted cat owners. The good news is that most of these criminal cats can be reformed. There are lots of reasons why cats do this. Kittens raised in cages, like in many shelters, can become…

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The Whole Story on Cat Elimination

Urinating or defecating on the floor, bed, furniture, sink, bathtub, or any place other than the litter pan is about the most difficult way for any pet to remain a welcome resident of the home. While mopping up the umpteenth puddle most folks are trying to figure out what to do about these disgusting messes.…

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Choosing The Greatest Kitten For Your Life

Is this possible? Can you choose the great feline friend who will be the faithful excellent companion you have always wanted? I think you can but there are many “ifs” involved. This is an issue that is both simple and rather complicated all at once. I’d like to start by asking whether you are a…

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