T's TIPS & TRICKS:
- Baby Gate Risers: One of my re-introduction clients designed these as a way to safely and consistently raise the baby gates used to separate two cats. This is a fantastic tool that may be helpful for other re-introduction situations!
- Carrier as Feeding Station: Turn a carrier into a feeding station for your cat! This way, when it's time to take your cat to the vet, they'll jump right into the carrier.
- Clicker Training A Group: While most people who clicker train cats train one cat at a time, my cats prefer to do things together—including clicker training! What does that look like? Click the link above to find out!
- Clicking for Connection: One of my techniques is making clicking noises with my tongue as a way to encourage shy cats to be less afraid of me. I don't know why this technique works, but it does! The link above is a video of me clicking at 3 shy kittens at a local shelter.
- FLYER, How to Introduce Yourself to Shelter Cats: "CONSENT: Cats do best when their preferences are respected. Just like you want strangers to interact with you while following specific, predictable rules, so do cats! It’s best to interact with cats on their terms and to offer them the choice to back away."
- Medicating Cinnamon: Oral medication administration with gel capsules & a pet piller
- PATTERN GAMES: Pattern Games, based on the “Control Unleashed” framework designed by Leslie McDevitt, allow the cat to have a predictable, positive interaction with a person (and/or another cat, for “Voluntary Sharing”) in which the cat—instead of the person—is in control of the interaction. Just two minutes a day can make a big difference!
- Up/Down: I've been using this pattern game with my cat Inigo since he made the transition from living outside to living inside in November, 2022. This video is from November, 2023.
- Voluntary Sharing: This is a pattern game that can be very helpful for inter-cat aggression issues. The video shows this pattern game with my two cats, Inigo and Yato.
- Voluntary Sharing, client video: Meet "Parmesan" (black and white cat) and "Mozzarella" (brown and white cat)! Mozzarella was recently adopted and the first introduction attempt was not successful; so they were learning how to interact with each other in more positive ways. This video shows them participating in the "Voluntary Sharing" pattern game.
- Voluntary Sharing, client video: Meet Potato (brown and white cat) and Spud (orange tabby)! These two cats were going through a re-introduction and learning how to interact with each other in more positive ways. This video shows them participating in the "Voluntary Sharing" pattern game.
- Prey Play: Bring out your cat's inner predator with prey play!
- Recommended Products: These are products I recommend constantly to clients!
- Revolution Trick: Trick for administering Revolution (or other topical flea treatments) on cats that are scared OR if you have trouble squeezing the Revolution tube
- Two-Finger Sniff: How I introduce myself to cats
- The IAABC Foundation: Our mission is to inspire, develop, and provide quality, evidence-based education, research, and other charitable activities in animal training and behavior.
- The IAABC Journal, Cat Articles
- IAABC Cat Community
- Everything Control Unleashed
- Fear Free Happy Homes: Cats 101
- International Cat Care: Problem Behaviour
- Association for Pet Loss and Bereavement, Directory of Services
- Anticipatory Grief: "If your pet is aging, seriously injured or chronically or terminally ill, you may find yourself experiencing all the emotions of grief in anticipation of losing your pet. Grieving that begins before a death occurs is known as anticipatory grieving, and the physical and emotional reactions involved are the same as those experienced in normal grieving."
- Why We Need To Take Pet Loss Seriously: "How to handle grief after a pet’s death—and why we all need to change our attitudes about it"
LINKS TO VETERINARIANS:
- Find a Cat-Friendly Vet: "Use this tool to search for an AAFP member veterinary professional, Cat Friendly Practice®, or those who have achieved their Cat Friendly Certificate."
- Behavior Vets: "Behavior problems get better with help, not time."
- Mid Atlantic Cat Hospital: "Our feline exclusive practice is AAHA and Cat Friendly Practice accredited for your cat’s best care and comfort." (This is the veterinarian I use for ALL of my personal cats!)
RECOMMENDED FACEBOOK GROUPS:
- Cats with Multiple Medical Conditions: "As our cats get older, and sometimes while they're still quite young, many of them develop more than one medical condition. There are several groups for specific conditions but there seem to be very few for people struggling to manage more than one condition in the same cat. Sometimes, these conditions can have opposing requirements for ideal management. And that can make it difficult for any group with a single area of experience and expertise to give the best advice to manage two or more conditions in the best way possible. This is where we want to help... We are a science-based group. We do not support the use of unproven alternative remedies especially in place of appropriate evidence-based and veterinary-approved care and treatment. We are interested in only the best and proven suggestions for members to take to their Vets." (I am an admin in this group.)
- Feline Diabetes: Facebook group. (I am an admin in this group.)
- The Force-Free Feline: "The Force-Free Feline is the sister group to Beyond Cesar Millan. This serves as a place to discuss cat behavior, punishment free behavior solutions and yes, even cat training!"
- Poisons Help; Emergency Identification For Mushrooms & Plants: "This group is for EMERGENCY HELP only. It is for situations where someone has consumed an unknown fungi, or touched or consumed an unknown plant."
HELP IF YOU HAVE A DIABETIC CAT:
- Diabetic Cats in Need: "The heart of our mission is to keep diabetic cats in their original, loving homes, regardless of the income level of their caregivers. We support diabetic cats in their original, adoptive, shelter, and rescue homes; help to rehome unwanted diabetic cats; and help to educate caregivers on the appropriate treatment of diabetic cats. DCIN is a Maine nonprofit corporation and recognized as a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization by the US Internal Revenue Service. DCIN's Employer ID Number (EIN) is 45-4519681."
- AAFP Diabetes Toolkit, Treatment: "Diabetes mellitus has become an increasingly common endocrine condition in cats. Management and treatment of feline diabetes is often perceived as a very complicated process as each cat needs an individualized plan, which includes frequent reassessment and adjustments to treatment as needed."
- Cornell Feline Health Center, Feline Diabetes: "Diabetes mellitus is a condition in which the body cannot properly produce or respond to the hormone insulin. This results in elevated levels of the sugar glucose in the blood, which is the main source of energy for the body."