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20. Do cats choose their owners?

Are the most recently domesticated animals that we share our environments with capable of choosing their owners? Yes.

Legally classified as "free spirits" cats are generally free to come & go as they please, they are solitary hunters retaining many of their wild instincts. Not being pack or troop animals they will (generally) rely on their own resourcefulness rather than looking to those around them for help. That resourcefullnes soon teaches them how to extract food/resources from the friendly characters around them.

They are social animals however & when contented will choose companionship & form bonds even when all their resource needs have been met.

If their home environment is proving to be too busy, noisy, crowded or resource poor, they may well move out if they encounter a better, welcoming option. Some cats will  just spend more & more time outdoors & may roam further afield in search of the missing elements in their lives. These animals may be at risk of getting lost & becoming stray & if they are not capable hunters/scavengers they may find themselves in trouble.

To prevent this roaming & relocating there are simple ways of enriching a home environment in order to maintain contented moggies. Please see Keeping your cat happy section & relevant links.

Auxiliary feeding

It is a common story when a cat turns up in someones garden asking for food, that it will be fed. This is a tricky situation as doing this can encourage a pet away from its home & family, but at the same time, could be a lifeline for a stray animal.

Identification is the key! Take a snapshot with a mobile phone or camera, leaflet &/or poster locally to try & find the owner or gain information on the cats patterns. If you are certain the cat is a stray please see "Found"

 

Starvin Marvin

Starvin Marvin

Morris, Monty & Matilda

Morris, Monty & Matilda

Monty caught on camera, asleep by the window

Monty caught on camera, asleep by the window

Grateful for food, but keeping a wary watch

Grateful for food, but keeping a wary watch

Cat carriers split into two halves, straw scattered inside (available as rabbit bedding in pet shops) makes great bedding. Ensure nests are sheltered from rain

Cat carriers split into two halves, straw scattered inside (available as rabbit bedding in pet shops) makes great bedding. Ensure nests are sheltered from rain

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