Living with a cat is best done with careful observation. Read on for some quick facts you might not know about feline health and behavior.
1. Watch the whiskers: When pulled back your cat’s expressing fear or uncertainty. Whiskers held to the side suggest all is right with the world.
2. Confusion and head tilting are signs of feline stroke.
3. Outdoor cats chatter their teeth and make small chirping sounds when hunting.
4. Cat suffering from constipation? Head for your pantry. Canned pumpkin, olive oil and fish oil are all safe treatments.
5. Baby in the house? Keep an eye on her food. The onions added to many brands are toxic for cats. Small amounts of onion lead to anemia; large amounts can be fatal.
6. Mushrooms kill cats. Accidental ingestion of mushrooms in the house or yard can lead to organ damage, hallucinations and coma.
7. After three months of age, a sudden change in a cat’s eye color signals a serious medical problem that requires prompt veterinary evaluation.
8. Is your cat beset by separation anxiety or fear of loud noises? It’s safe to use melatonin as a mild, short-term sedative.
9. A treatment Jamie Lee Curtis would love: Yogurt makes an effective aid for feline irritable bowel syndrome.
10. Male cats are biologically able to sire kittens at five months. Responsible breeders wait until a male is 18 months before breeding.
11. Raisins and grapes: Good for humans, bad for cats. Accidental ingestion can cause feline kidney failure.
12. Tylenol poisoning can kill a cat within 36 hours without prompt medical attention.
13. Siamese and Burmese cats like to ingest wool, perhaps because breeders often take them away from their mothers too soon.
14. Hiding is normal for a newly acquired kitten. It allows him to explore his new environment at his own pace.
15. Kitty got the blues? St. John’s Wort and extra sunlight can alleviate cat depression.
16. Cracked or dry kitten paws indicate a lack of fatty acids in the diet.
17. Why all the kneading? Kittens knead to get more milk when nursing, and some cats carry this behavior into adulthood as an expression of comfort.
18. Why does one cat hiss when the other one comes home from the vet? The returning cat may look the same, but he smells different.
19. Cat jumping on your counters? Lay down aluminum foil. The crinkly sound bothers cats, and eventually your jumper will avoid the counter altogether.
20. Bad times for extra toes: In 19th-century Europe, cats with more than the usual 18 toes were associated with witchcraft.
21. Meanwhile, early U.S. settlers thought cats with extra toes were good luck.
22. Feline pregnancy lasts 63 days.
23. Unusual body movements during a kitten’s sleep are a sign that his muscles and nerves are developing properly.
24. After a couple of weeks, a nursing cat will start leaving her kittens for short periods. She’s training them to get out and follow her.
25. Like people, cats can get asthma, and bronchodilators are the first-line treatment.
19. http://www.thepetcenter.com/Article.aspx?id=3537#Dr. Beam