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Old 08-23-2013, 07:05 PM
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Default Educate me!

So I think I'm going to get one of the kittens Smkie is fostering. I've never had an indoor cat before; they've all been outdoor barn cats on my grandma's farm.

What is it like/what should I expect?

Other than litterbox, cat tree and some toys, what else should I get?

Are all cats destructive to plants?

Would it be totally weird if I socialized him like a dog?
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Old 08-23-2013, 07:14 PM
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I don't really have much to comment on because all of our cats have been indoor/outdoor cats (and if I ever have a cat I want to keep it that way), but I will comment on this:
Quote:
Would it be totally weird if I socialized him like a dog?
I know it really depends on the cat as to whether or not the socialization will actually do anything, but my friend has a cat that she treats like a dog, and he thinks he is a dog. She leashed trained him and he goes for walks. He rides in the car. She gives him baths once a month and trims his nails. He's crate trained. She teaches him tricks. And although he is a cat, and he acts like a cat, he is a very social, well trained cat.

I know some breeds of cats are more prone to that type of behavior (saw a guy walking a Bengal around in Petsmart the other day), and I know some cats just don't have the kind of temperament to do that kind of thing with (just like some dogs wouldn't), but I think if you start young, socialize, and get the cat used to all of those things...you may be lucky and have a cat with a stable enough temperament to enjoy doing it!
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Old 08-23-2013, 08:01 PM
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I'd prefer in/out, but I'll be in a 7th floor apartment, so his "outdoor" will be limited to either on-leash or just my balcony.

Columbus seems to be a pretty fearless kitty so far, so I think I'll give it a shot.
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Old 08-23-2013, 08:56 PM
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I've never had a cat that goes outside so I don't really know what is different exactly, except you might see the cat more often. It really depends on the individual cats temperament. I have a cat that's the most in your face annoying creature I've ever owned (and I love it!). He always wants to cuddle and be pet. If I'm sitting down he wants to be in my shirt (weirdo). If you're standing and he wants attention he screams and jumps up into your arms. That's my kind of cat. Neither of my cats have shown the slightest interest in plants.

Get at least one scratching post for each room that contains furniture (or something else the cat might scratch) and be aware that some cats can be picky. Mine both hate sisal for example which is what a huge number of cat trees and scratchers are made of. So I get cardboard and carpet scratchers. Definitely get him used to nail trims.

I've known one cat that was socialized more like a dog. She brought her kitten wherever she went. She was my brother's girlfriend. The cat went to her mothers, our house, all her friends' houses. Her cat got super excited when she saw the crate come out because he knew he was going on a trip. He could visit my house with two cats and was fine with them and us, no hiding. He could go to her mothers with their Boxer and was fine. He was just like a well socialized dog. Cats get a reputation of being afraid of change and new places but I always wondered if it all came down to the fact that they never leave the house in most cases. I think it definitely has to start when they are young and be frequent and continue for life, but I think many cats could be comfortable going places if they were socialized to it.
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Old 08-23-2013, 09:39 PM
StillandSilent StillandSilent is offline
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I socialized Chesh just like a puppy when I brought her home. At 3 years old she is outgoing with strangers, rides in the car like a champ, and adapts very well to stressful environments, including the vets. I intended to teach her tricks as well, but was hampered by the fact that she's an idiot. Sweet, though.
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Old 08-24-2013, 07:51 AM
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My cats are more doglike than catlike.
When I go for walk,they come along.
They answer to their names and love the dogs.
Mine are inside/outside cats.
I use a litterbox,in winter and when they were kttens.
Now,they ask to go out when they need to.
A tree house is a nice thing to have and I have balls,for them.to play with.
Now,on to some pixs!.
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Old 08-26-2013, 03:44 PM
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I've only taught the cats to sit, but it's quite amusing to ask Rumor to sit and see two attentive kitties sitting as well. They are pretty well-socialized and will come to the door when someone comes over, just like a dog would. I don't bathe them, but they don't mind water and I've had both of them in the kiddie pool. They don't really scratch inappropriately, but I do trim their claws so they can't do much damage anyway. I don't put them on leashes when I take them out. They won't wander off, so I just watch them and tell Rumor to go get them if they go too far.

They don't always act like dogs, but I guess I treat them like dogs most of the time, lol.
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Old 08-26-2013, 04:57 PM
Saeleofu Saeleofu is offline
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Our cat at work rides in a stroller, walks on a leash, and knows a few other tricks ranging from "target" to "sit" to "go home." She's reallychanged my mind about the trainability of cats. When I get my own cat someday (I SO want a Sphynx), I will train and socialize it just like a dog and see what happens. I also want to get futurecat used to water so I can have a cat like this:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oLvSs0ImaS4
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Old 08-26-2013, 05:02 PM
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Those of you who feed raw to your cats. What is your menu? Kitty is currently eating kibble; how hard was it to switch them?
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Old 08-26-2013, 06:03 PM
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I don't really have any feedback to offer on feeding cats raw, but I thought I might pop in to address your other questions. Granted, I don't claim to be a cat expert by any means. I just have my experiences with the Kitty Boy Brothers to go on.

Not all cats are destructive to plants. Though many cats are destructive to some plants. Spider plants are a particular favorite. I've never had a cat that was able to leave them alone. Ticheli in particular loses his brains about them. Other than that, they generally leave my other plants alone.

My cats are socialized like dogs. It may be weird, but I think it worked out okay. They were trained to walk on a leash and harness, and for the first 2-3 years we had them we took them shopping at Petsmart/Petco fairly regularly. The only reason we don't do that anymore is because we don't really frequent those stores often. They were very popular when we did do that, though. lol

Really, for the most part I did just train them like dogs, because that is just what I know how to do. LOL! So it can be done. Just be prepared for a cat to do something that is seemingly out of left field (compared to what a dog might do). They do tend to be better critical thinkers in many ways, and can find... creative ways to test you.

Regarding equipment... yeah, litter box, toys, and something to scratch on are the basics. Mylar crinkly balls are very popular in my house. The teeny tiny plush small breed/puppy toys by Kong are actually big favorites. Ticheli takes his Kong teddy bear every where. Whitacre's favorite toy of all time was an old, colorful sock that had lost it's match. He carried it like a baby.

Long story short, cats are different from dogs. But they aren't THAT different. At least, not in my opinion.

I hope that helps a little. Good luck!
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