Cat Care 101: Ask the Experts

A list of experts offers behavioral advice.

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Pam Johnson-Bennett is a feline behaviorist and author living in Nashville, Tenn.

Nicholas Dodman, DVM, is a veterinarian and animal behaviorist at Tufts University Veterinary Medical School in North Grafton, Mass.

Larry Lachman, Psy.D., is an animal behavior consultant in Carmel, Calif., and co-author of Cats on the Counter (2000, St. Martin's Press).

Carole Wilbourn is a cat therapist in New York City, "Cats on the Couch" columnist and author of The Total Cat (2000, Quill).

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Reader Comments

mark    stanley, VA

12/18/2013 5:36:13 PM

we just adopted a kitten and she just runs and hides and she dosent want to go near her food is this normal or

Cat Editor    Irvine, CA

5/16/2013 12:40:58 PM

Ekaterina: Rather than try to get your cats to play together, play with the male cat separately using a wand-type toy. That might satisfy his penchant for play without going to his new sister. Also, make it as rewarding as possible for both cats to be near each other by offering a favorite treat, play session or affection. Patience is important whenever you introduce a new cat into the household.

Check out: LINK

Good luck!

Ekaterina    Bunnlevel, NC

5/15/2013 6:44:28 PM


I picked up a stray off the street 6 month ago, a boy. I had already had 2 female cats then, and they get along and play with each other and play fight all the time. The stray was very thin and sickly and old, but a very-very sweet cat. He almost never plays and tried everything to encourage it, but although he does feel a lot better now, he still won't. However, after 6 months of being with us I noticed him trying to play chase one of my females. Interestingly enough, she is the one they do get along with better normally, but every time he tries to chase her, she turns around and gets defensive, hisses, ears down. Definitely not playful. It breaks my heart, I so want the old guy to have fun, especially knowing he does not have a ton of it left in his life - the poor thing was diagnosed with kidney failure. I want him to be happy and play while he still feels fine, and my witch of a female does not get it. How can I help her understand that he is just playing? She does it all the time with the other female!

Thank you in advance!

Martha    Bushkill, PA

5/10/2013 3:18:39 PM

I recently acquired two cats, a female now 5 months and a male now 9 months. They do not like riding in the car although they do not have a problem with being in the carriers. They both meow to show their distress while moving (they are not very verbal otherwise (Ragdolls). The male pooped on the way home from the vet twice. What can I do to get them more comfortable riding in the car?

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