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The cat behavior understands their way of acting and the habits they carry out in their day to day, as well as the language they use to communicate, relate and interact with the individuals and stimuli in their environment. Although we can approach a logical definition of what feline behavior is, the truth is that we still have much to discover about the nature of cats and their forms of expression.
However, we do know that a cat's behavior is influenced not only by the inherent characteristics of its species, race, genetics and the personality of each individual, but can also vary significantly depending on the education, environment and care provided by each tutor.
In this AnimalWised article, we will talk in detail about the behavior of puppy and adult cats, as well as the factors that intervene in the formation of the character of the feline. In this way you can improve communication and bond with your cats, pillars for a positive coexistence.You may also be interested in: Behavior of Rabbits Index
- How is the character of a cat formed?
- The behavior of cats according to their age
- Behavior of puppy cats
- Behavior of the adult cat
- Behavior of cats with humans
- Behavior of cats in heat
How is the character of a cat formed?
The character and behavior of cats can vary enormously, depending on various factors. Next we will talk a little more about them:
- Genetics: the character of cats is closely related to their genetic inheritance, up to 30%, which includes the characteristic traits of the breed and parents. Thus, when felines present a scary character, it is very likely that they transmit it to their children.
- Socialization: the socialization of puppy cats directly influences the character of their adulthood. This period, which ranges from two weeks of age to seven, is considered a "sensitive stage ", since it is where the "friendly species " are recognized. Therefore, during the socialization of the puppies we must ensure that they interact in a positive way with all kinds of people, animals and environments, without causing stress in the individuals..
- Learning: education and the environment in which they have been developed provide felines with an experience that will have a direct impact on their behavior. Although genetics and socialization play a very important role, learning is key in cats, domestic animals with very high cognitive abilities..
Thus, each cat can show a unique character, even when we talk about sibling individuals who have grown up together and have had similar experiences. Although some behaviors are specific to the species, the three factors that we have detailed above are those that will directly influence the character and behavior of cats. That is why the task of educating a cat from a young age is so important..
The behavior of cats according to their age
The behavior of cats varies according to life stage in which they are. Thus, we can observe that puppy cats are much more playful and curious, while elderly cats tend to show a calmer behavior throughout the day..
Here we will talk a little about what to expect about the behavior of cats at each stage:
Behavior of puppy cats
Puppy cats they are not born with a definite character, Although, as we have mentioned, there are personality traits that will be associated with the behavior of the species or with genetics..
After birth, kittens are completely dependent on their mother, until they are 9-15 days old, when they begin to gain mobility. At the same time, the beginning of their socialization period occurs, therefore, at this stage it will be essential to socialize the kittens in a positive way.
We will allow them to interact with people, animals and elements of the environment so that they can become familiar with them, thus avoiding the appearance of fears or other unwanted behaviors. All this will affect a balanced behavior in his adult stage.
After 4 or 5 weeks, the socialization period begins to end, at the same time that the progressive weaning, and we will begin to observe new behaviors in kittens. Living together with their mother and siblings will allow them to learn the language and communication of cats, the basis of their social behavior..
We will observe that they begin to eat by themselves small amounts of food, to use the litter box and bury their feces, the appearance of grooming (grooming) towards themselves and other individuals, the social game with their peers, predatory behavior and greater social behavior in general.
At this time it will be essential to use positive reinforcement (treats, kind words or caresses) to incentivize cats to show the behaviors that we consider positive, such as using the scratching post, being manipulated or sleeping in their bed. It is important that we establish with all the members of the household the behaviors to be reinforced, in this way we will achieve better results.
Later, from 7 weeks of age and until puberty, felines start in the juvenile period, which is characterized by the appearance of sexual behaviors. At this time it will be essential to go to our veterinarian to inform us about the health benefits that castration of cats represents, such as the prevention of certain types of cancer or urine marking within the home.
Behavior of the adult cat
The behavior of adult cats will be highly influenced by the stages of transition, socialization and youth, even so, they will continue to learn throughout their lives from all those experiences that come their way..
If we have guaranteed positive experiences, we will most likely verify a balanced behavior in our cats, although this may be slightly influenced by breed or genetics. However, there is no predictable behavior in adult cats, on the contrary, each feline can develop its own character and temperament.
Even so, in general, we can observe that adult cats are territorial animals, They stick firmly to their routine as a way of preserving their well-being. Sudden changes often cause the appearance of stress in cats, which affects not only their behavior, but also their health.
At this stage it will be essential keep stimulating the game and the social behavior of cats through daily activities and affection. We will avoid boredom and sedentary routines, betting on environmental enrichment, essential for the management of a stable behavior and a healthy weight in felines.
If we observe changes in the character of cats, we will go to a veterinarian with relative urgency, since we must know that these animals they usually hide pain very well, anxiety and other problems that they may have until they are already in an advanced state. The regular vet visits, Every six or twelve months, they will be essential to guarantee your good physical and mental health, as well as to detect any anomaly promptly, before it worsens.
From 10 to 12 years of age we will observe the appearance of the first symptoms of old age in cats, both physical and behavioral. At this stage, cats spend more time resting, require more care and affection, are not as active and can begin to develop health problems. It will be essential to continue encouraging gambling and daily habits, even for a shorter period of time.
Behavior of cats with humans
Last (but not least), let's talk a little about the behavior of cats with humans, specifically about the relationship they have towards their guardians.
The survival instinct of cats pushes them to stick to a routine and to defend their territory, but in addition, it also greatly influences when it comes to interacting with people. In general, it is totally normal for cats don't come near right away to an unknown person, although of course there are very sociable individuals who enjoy contact with people.
Cats often avoid and shy away from people they don't know, those who are especially loud, or those who want to catch them. In case of not being able to flee and feel cornered, felines can show certain warnings, such as snorts and growls. In the case of being ignored they can even attack.
Therefore, when trying to rescue or help abandoned cats, it will be important to be very patient and try to gain the trust of the felines so that they themselves approach. Also discover in Animal Expert some tips to approach a fearful or scared cat safely.
But if we talk about the relationship between felines and their guardian, we already assume that it is a bond based on affection and trust. Of course, we cannot expect cats to act in the same way as a dog or a guinea pig, as they are different species.
In turn, felines tend to be more independent animals that, many times, opt for a more solitary lifestyle in their natural state, although cats can form colonies of cats where each individual preserves their autonomy, but collaborates with the survival of their group.
Therefore, while cats understand that we provide them with optimal conditions for their development and we provide them with affection., cats don't see us as references, just like dogs do, but as members of their community (or family, to put it in more "human" terms).
Thus, their way of showing affection to their guardians will be very similar to the ways in which they express appreciation towards other cats. To learn more about the displays of affection in the feline world, in AnimalWised we show you 10 signs that your cat loves you.
Behavior of cats in heat
To finish, we must make a special mention of the behavior of cats in heat. We must know that sexual behaviors are totally instinctive and that cause changes in your body and behavior. Influenced by daylight hours, the weather, and other individuals, heat in cats causes certain behaviors, such as:
Although there are some contraceptive methods for cats that prevent the appearance of these symptoms, such as injection for heat, we must know that they also have serious side effects for health. The only effective way to prevent them completely is castration. Check with your veterinarian to know more.