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How To Get A Cat To Come To You

If the cat doesn’t want to, then it doesn’t want to, so the prejudice. But our furry friends aren’t all that anarchic. Birga Dexel the behavioral therapist told us what we can do to make cats grow fond of us.

Compared to other pets, cats conquered our sofas relatively late. About 4400 BC they came to Europe for the first time. Incidentally, all domesticated house tigers are descended from the wildcat or African wildcat Felis silvestris lybica, which is still found in North Africa and the Middle East today. From there, the first tame cats spread via today’s Turkey to south-eastern Europe and ultimately found their way into our living rooms. And our hearts, because cats are our favorite pets. Around 13.7 million live in German households, followed by 9.2 million dogs.

“Dogs have owners, cats have employees.”

Kurt Tucholsky the writer is said to have said so. That’s what many think. But kittens are just as capable of close relationships with humans as dogs are, explains Birga Dexel the cat expert. In fact, like us, cats are individualists. Some are open to people, others are more introverted. “The decisive factor for how cats approach people is their socialization – in other words, which one, positive or negative, and how many experiences have they had with humans in the early stages of their development,” says Birga Dexel.

In order to win the sympathy of a cat, a few simple rules of conduct apply – as with dealing with dogs.

THE FIRST COMMANDMENT IS RETENTION.

Many people are too hectic and loud, making the mistake of walking straight up to the animal and wanting to touch it directly. For some cats, this happens too quickly and they feel pressured. They then flee or react aggressively.

Likewise, one should not want to stroke a cat from above, but rather the hands should come from below. Another no-go: stare into the eyes. Like dogs, they perceive this as a threat and aggressive behavior. Better: open and close your eyelids slowly. In cat language, according to Birga Dexel, this is a calming signal along the lines of: “I come in peace, you have nothing to fear from me.”

Becoming friends with a cat requires patience above all else.

THE CAT ALWAYS DETERMINES THE SPEED OF THE APPROACH, NOT THE HUMAN.

The best thing to do is let the kitty come to you. And then, like a dog, she can become our best friend.

Mary Allen

Written by Mary Allen

Hello, I'm Mary! I've cared for many pet species including dogs, cats, guinea pigs, fish, and bearded dragons. I also have ten pets of my own currently. I've written many topics in this space including how-tos, informational articles, care guides, breed guides, and more.

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