Oh, Poo! Why Doesn't My Cat Bury That Stuff?

For cats, poo is a powerful communications tool.
Dear Thomasina... 
Sorry to be so direct, but why doesn't my cat bury his poo?
-- Grossed Out Cat Mom

Hi Cat Mom!
Sorry you’re grossed out. To use your word, poo can be a very big deal to us, but not for the reasons you may think. For us, it’s a powerful communications tool.  So your cat might not be burying his “stuff” because he wants other animals to know your house is his territory.

Not So Fastidious Cats

Today's Purrl Of Wisdom

“The cat does not offer services. The cat offers itself. Of course he wants care and shelter. You don't buy love for nothing.”
― William S. Burroughs, The Cat Inside

Defensive Sleeping | Why Cats Sleep Curled Up

Cats sleep curled up in a ball to keep warm and protect themselves.
Cats have good reasons for sleeping curled up in a ball.
Dear Thomasina...
Why do cats sleep curled up in a ball? Isn't that uncomfortable?
Concerned Cat Mom

Hi Concerned!

Don't worry. Your cat's fine sleeping curled up in a ball. And when she starts to feel uncomfortable, she can always stretch out!

I lived outside for a long time before I moved in here, so I guess I'm a defensive sleeper. I feel warm and safe sleeping curled up in a ball with my very fluffy tail covering my eyes. Believe it or not, my favorite place to sleep is a round sink. It's just the right shape and size.

Why Cats Sleep Curled Up

Today's Purrl Of Wisdom

“For, though the room was silent, the silence of half a hundred cats is a peculiar thing, like fifty individual silences all piled one on top of another.”
― Susanna Clarke, Jonathan Strange & Mr Norrell

Today's Purrl Of Wisdom

“I am the Cat who walks by himself, and all places are alike to me.” 
― Rudyard KiplingThe Cat That Walked By Himself

Your Cat's Name Says It All | How To Name A Cat

How to choose a cat name that will make your cat happy
Dear Thomasina...
Is it okay to change a cat's name. I recently adopted a cat named Stinky. She must hate that name! 
-- Hopeful

Hi Hopeful!

Oh, yes... Please change your cat's name! No wonder she looks so sad in her picture. Who would want to be called Stinky for 18 or 20 years?

To be honest, I've never heard that word, and I don't know what it means. But I could tell by the way my human typist said it when she read your email to me that it's not good.

What's In A (Cat's) Name?

Today's Purrl Of Wisdom

“What's your name,' Coraline asked the cat. 'Look, I'm Coraline. Okay?'
'Cats don't have names,' it said.
'No?' said Coraline.
'No,' said the cat. 'Now you people have names. That's because you don't know who you are. We know who we are, so we don't need names.” 

― Neil GaimanCoraline

The Amazing Power Of The Purr

Never underestimate the power of the purr. It can cure humans, as well as cats.
Dear Thomasina...
Just wondering... why do cats purr?
-- Curious

Hey,  Curious...
Good question! People think we purr because we're happy. That's true, of course. But there are other reasons why cats purr, too. And our purrs don't all sound the same. You have to really listen to understand what your cat's purr is telling you.

It's Not Always About 'Purrfection'

Our Cats' Top 10 List Of Pet Peeves |Things Humans Do That Really Annoy Cats

So many things humans do annoy cats.
Dear Thomasina...
Does hugging annoy cats? The other night, I gave mine a big hug and got scratched! Why would he do that? I thought he loved me!
-- Hurt

Hey, Hurt!

I'm so sorry about the scratch. Hate to say it, but hugging can annoy cats. If you gave me a hug, I'd scratch, too. We're not big on huge human arms squishing us until our ribs ache.

I'm sure your cat loves you a lot. But there are some things humans do that annoy us so much. Picking us up is one of them. We feel safer when our feet are planted firmly on the ground, not suspended in midair. Hugging can actually hurt and makes getting picked up even worse.

Ten Things That Really Annoy Cats

Today's Purrl Of Wisdom

“I am what I am. I would tell you what you want to know if I could, for you have been kind to me. But I am a cat, and no cat anywhere ever gave anyone a straight answer.” 
― Peter S. BeagleThe Last Unicorn

From Chirping To Chattering - Eight Sounds Cats Make

Meowing is just one of the sounds cats make to communicate with us.
Dear Thomasina...

My cat often chirps at me when I get home. Why does he do that? What's he saying?
-- Curious

Hi Curious!
Oh, how nice that your cat chirps to you! He's saying "welcome home!" Not all of us do that (I don't), and you should feel very honored!

When we talk to each other, we usually use body language. We talk with our eyes, ears and tails. But since humans don't seem to understand our native language, we make sounds, like your cat's chirp, to communicate with you.

Chirps & Seven More Sounds Cats Make

Today's Purrl Of Wisdom

“Of all God's creatures, there is only one that cannot be made slave of the leash. That one is the cat. If man could be crossed with the cat it would improve the man, but it would deteriorate the cat.” 
― Mark Twain

Why Do Cats Pull Food Out Of Their Bowls?

Some cats pull food out of their bowls when the bowls are too deep or too narrow.
Dear Thomasina...
Why do cats pull food out of their bowls and eat it off the floor? My cats make such a mess!
-- Frustrated

Hi, Frustrated!
Yikes!! I'm sorry about the mess. Although I don't do it, I can think of a few reasons why cats pull food out of their bowls.

Why Some Cats Prefer The Floor To Their Food Bowls

Three Reasons Why Cats Eat Grass

Cats eat grass because it's moist and juicy and tastes good. And it might also be good for them.
Dear Thomasina...
Why do cats eat grass? Mine eats grass and then throws up all over everywhere. Why does she torture herself this way?
-- Anxious Cat Mom

Hi Anxious...
Oh, no! I don't think your cat is torturing herself. Cats eat grass because it's moist and juicy, and it tastes so good. We love eating grass!

Throwing up a few minutes later isn't so great. But it's better than the alternative -- an uncomfortable stomach -- and grass doesn't always make us sick.

Why Cats Eat Grass

Here are three reasons why cats eat grass.
1. We eat grass because it tastes really good, especially when it's still wet from the dew or rain. 

Today's Purrl Of Wisdom

"I believe cats to be spirits come to earth. A cat, I am sure, could walk on a cloud without coming through." 
-- Jules Verne

How Cats Speak With Their Eyes

Sometimes cats speak with their eyes. Look into your cats eyes and see what she has to say.
Dear Thomasina...
Can cats speak with their eyes? Sometimes my cat looks at me with so much affection, I feel like she's saying "I love you." 
-- Curious

Hi Curious...
Ohhh... Lucky you! Yes, cats speak with their eyes, and some of us have a special look to tell our humans we love them. I don't though. Not all of us are that... ummm... demonstrative (How do you like that word? My human typist came up with it).

Your cat can tell you all kinds of important things with her eyes. I did this translation for you.

How Cats Speak With Their Eyes

Today's Purrl Of Wisdom

"After scolding one's cat one looks into its face and is seized by the ugly suspicion that it understood every word. And has filed it for reference."
-- Charlotte Gray

Why Do Cats Put Their Toys In Shoes?

Dear Thomasina...
Why does my cat put toys in shoes? Isn't that sort of weird?
-- Perplexed Cat Mom

Hi Perplexed!
To be honest, I put toys in shoes all the time so I know where to find them. She has these ugly red ones that she never wears, and that's where I keep my tiny toy mice.

Maybe your cat's just being organized like I am. But instinct enters into this, too, because we're all hunters at heart, and for us, toys are almost like the tiny animals we catch outside.

Why Cats Put Toys In Shoes

Today's Purrl Of Wisdom

"I love cats because I love my home and after a while they become its visible soul."

-- Jean Cocteau

Six Things Cats Hate Walking On

Cats hate walking on unfamiliar surfaces.
Cats hate walking on 
unfamiliar surfaces.
Do cats hate walking on unfamiliar things, Thomasina? I recently replaced my carpeting with hardwood, and my cats refuse to walk on it!
-- Perplexed Cat Mom

Hi Perplexed...
Yikes! I'm sorry your cats hate walking on your new floor. I'm pretty sure they'll get used to it.

Cats are creatures of habit, and it takes us a while to accept anything new. And new floors would be a major adjustment. I don't think I'd want to walk on them either! For one thing, they'd smell strange and not at all like my familiar territory. And hardwood floors would probably feel slippery when I was used to walking on carpet

Things Cats Hate Walking On

Today's Purrl Of Wisdom

"There are two means of refuge from the misery of life — music and cats."
-- Albert Schweitzer

Today's Purrl Of Wisdom

“The way to get on with a cat is to treat it as an equal - or even better, as the superior it knows itself to be.” 
― Elizabeth PetersThe Snake, the Crocodile and the Dog

Is Your Cat A Bed Buddy? Why Some Cats Sleep With Their People & Others Don't

Is your cat a bed buddy or is he one of the cats who don't sleep with their people?
Dear Thomasina...
Why don't my cats sleep with me? Does that mean they don't love me?
-- Sad

Hi Sad!
Believe it or not, lots of cats don't sleep with their people. I don't sleep with our human, but I love her a lot!

We really do love our creature comforts, and I find my own bed much more comfortable than hers. And she's too restless. I take sleep very seriously, and I do not like being disturbed!

Why Cats Sleep With Their People

Today's Purrl Of Wisdom

"In order to keep a true perspective of one's importance, everyone should have a dog that will worship him and a cat that will ignore him." 
-- Dereke Bruce

A Love Affair With Cardboard: Six Reasons Why Cats Like Boxes

Cats like boxes because they're warm and safe.
Dear Thomasina...
Why do cats like boxes? My cat has a gazillion beds, but she prefers to sleep in an old box from Amazon. Why???
-- Purrplexed

Hi Purrplexed...
Love the name! I know how much some cats like boxes, but I'm not one of them. My favorite place to sleep is our round powder room sink. It's the perfect shape and size for a nap when I'm curled up with my tail over my eyes.

But that's just me. Here are six reasons why most cats like boxes.

Today's Purrl of Wisdom

"There is something about the presence of a cat... that seems to take the bite out of being alone." 
-- Louis J. Camuti

Are Hunting Cats Rodent Specialists?

The good news for birds is that most hunting cats are rodent specialists
Dear Thomasina...
I heard that most hunting cats are rodent specialists. Is that true? My barn cats catch a lot of mice but seem to have no interest in birds. Is this normal, or am I just lucky?
-- Working Cats' Mom

Hey, Working Cats' Mom!
Yes, it's true! Most hunting cats are rodent specialists. Almost all of us have our hunting preferences, and the vast majority of us prefer mice. I certainly do.

Have you ever tried to catch a flying bird? Phew... I gave up on that ages ago. And that might explain why most cats are rodent specialists. Mice are much better suited to our wait and pounce style of hunting.

Today's Purrl Of Wisdom

There has never been a cat
Who couldn't calm me down
By walking slowly
Past my chair.

-- Rod McKuen