If you have more than one cat, there may come a time when you have to deal with feline conflict. You can’t just ignore the fighting and hope that your cats will work it out themselves – they usually won’t. Here are 7 tips to help you keep the peace in a multi-cat home.
Identify the Cause
Be aware that a full-on fight – where the fur flies and the claws come out – is actually a late stage in a progression of more subtle signs of feline disagreement. It’s likely that tension has been building for awhile, but it can be easy to miss until it escalates to actual fighting.
Cats may fight for a number of reasons; sometimes the cause is apparent and other times it can take some keen observation and diligent detective work to figure it out. It could be turf tiffs, redirected aggression, jealousy, boredom, bullying, hormones or a new cat in the house. Cats might also fight as a byproduct of stress, such as a move to a new home or a change in their routine.
Regardless of what you think might be causing the behavior change, it’s always wise to start with a visit to your vet to rule out any medical problems. When two cats who have always gotten along suddenly start fighting, there could be an underlying medical issue. Read More »
If you have more than one feline in your household, there may come a time when your ears are assaulted with the awful screeching noise of two cats fighting. Most of the time, these are merely playful tussles that sound a lot worse than they actually are. The noise fighting cats make can seem like they are in a fight to the death, even if they’re really just engaged in a mock battle or trying to assert their place as Top Cat in your household. As a responsible pet owner, it’s important to be able to distinguish between a real cat fight and a “play” fight. Play fights don’t require human intervention, but all-out cat brawls do, lest one or both of your cats get injured in the fight. Learn about the body language of cats and the signals that indicate a fight is for real.
The best way to break up a cat fight is to not let one get started in the first place, and understanding a cat’s body language is a great help. The problem is that with some cats, there is a bit of a “gray area” between play and fighting. Generally speaking, growling, hissing, arched backs, flattened ears, puffed up fur and big fat tails are not good signs. Subtleties aside, if you really take the time to observe your cats’ posturing and sounds, you can usually distinguish between the mock battles and a serious fight.
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