As loving cat parents, we of course want our kitties to trust us. But how do you gain your cat’s trust? PetReader reveals seven tips that really help.
Trust has to be learned – this also applies to your cat. Of course, you know that you never want your cat harmed and that she is safe with you. In order for this to reach your kitty, it is important to understand how cats can trust – and how you can win theirs. The following tips can help:
Let Your Cat Take the First Step
Those googly eyes! The fluffy fur! The little paws! Cats are just cute – it’s no wonder that they immediately make us want to stroke and caress them. Even so, you shouldn’t rush wildly at a cat right away if you don’t want to gamble away its trust.
Because when people just sit still and focus on something else, cats are more willing to approach them. And they don’t retreat so quickly either when people respond to the rapprochement. A study has even confirmed that. And in another, it was shown that cats interact longer with their humans if the interaction starts with them and they also decide when it ends.
Approach at Eye Level
Figuratively speaking, you should approach your cat at eye level, advises Dr. Mikel Delgardo, who studies the relationship between humans and animals at the UC Davis School of Veterinary Medicine, on Mental Floss. In other words: Greet the kitty as a conspecific would. The expert recommends holding an outstretched index finger just in front of the cat’s nose. And not from above, but at nose level.
Cats greet each other by rubbing their noses together. Your velvet paw can then smell your fingertip. And once you’ve got your cat’s trust, she may even rub her head against your hand afterward.
Accept When You Get a Basket
But things will always turn out differently and your four-legged friend will give you the cold shoulder. Then you shouldn’t push the cat any further – that would only deter it further. Not a good basis for trust, is it? Instead, you should give your kitty space so that she can distance herself and withdraw. If she longs to be close, she will come to you again.
Know Your Cat’s Favorite Spots
In a small study a few days ago, scientists examined the parts of the body where cats seem to particularly enjoy being petted. Result: in the area of the forehead and on the cheeks. On the other hand, they did not like to be touched by the tail.
Observe Your Cat’s Behavior
Of course, every cat is different and has different preferences. So it’s always a good idea to see how your kitty reacts to certain things. At some point, you will learn to decipher your cat’s body language – and to react to its signals accordingly. There is hardly a better sign of mutual trust than when you really understand your cat.
Early Socialization is Important to a Cat’s Confidence
Several studies agree: If cats regularly experience positive interaction with people as kittens, they will trust them more quickly and are generally more friendly towards them. A few minutes a day are enough for this. And that also applies if your kitty has been socialized by someone other than you. Your cat’s general trust in people is important.
Keep Calm and Help with Grooming
Many cats don’t like sudden noises or movements. Therefore, try to always move calmly and quietly around your kitty. Your cat will notice when you exude calm and serenity. This helps her not to see you as a threat, but as someone, she can trust. After all, safety is an important cornerstone of trust – this also applies to your cat.
Joint quality time can further strengthen the bond between your velvet paw and you. For this, veterinarian Dr. Karen Becker on her blog “Healthy Pets”, for example, helps your cat with grooming. After all, mutual grooming is also a sign of solidarity among cats. Many cats, therefore, enjoy being gently brushed.