Friday, February 24, 2023

It it itches I grooms it.

Gracie groomed because she had fleas

If I itch, I scratch. Or I groom my hair fiercely. But I also scratch or groom when I am in pain. And sometimes I will groom myself compulsively when I feel anxious or stressed.

Why do I start having bare patches?

Well fleas are the obvious answer. And if it's not fleas, it might be other parasites. If my hair is falling out, rather than being groomed out, then it might be ringworm or the demodex mite.

People think I don't have fleas when I do - because I have groomed them away. Every single one of them. I have groomed even when they are gone, because the bite they leave  behind still itches. 

Miss Foo - a painful area

Humans don't find any fleas, so they think there are none. If they bothered to groom me over a piece of white paper, and then poured a little bit of water on to the dirt there they would see it goes sort of brown - flea poo has blood in it.

Zennor had a food allergy
I groom when it is painful because that is all I can do. I lick and hope I can lick it better. So I groom arthritic areas which are painful. I groom my tummy if I have cysititis. 

I also groom if I have food allergies. Most owners don't know this but I need a proper veterinary allergy diet.

And finally, I groom - over and over again - if I am really anxious. 

You'll need a good vet to rule out all these problems and diagnose the correct one. 

So take me to a dermatology vet please. 

  •  Take a look at for more about overgrooming.

Saturday, February 18, 2023

A Valentine's Day for cat lovers?

I wish there was a Valentine's day for cat-human partners.

Neither she nor I got a Valentine card last week, not even an anonymous one. But we have each other.

Who wants a same-species partner, anyway? I certainly don't. I don't get on with strange cats and I would  be devastated (and very angry) if a new cat came into the household. I am a one-woman cat.

She doesn't want one either. She has had her share and now she prefers the serenity of sleeping in the double bed - without a man.

She is not alone, of course. Neither of us are alone. We suit each other (even though I find her tiresome, very tiresome, at times). She loves me and sometimes I love her back.


I give her the slow blink that tells her I am feeling love. Or IO rub against her. Or, in my case, I give her the privilege of petting me while I sleep on her lap.

I am better for her than any other human. I don't answer back, I listen when she is boring on about something, I don't tell her what to do or how to dress, and I don't care that she is older than me.

What human would want another human, when they can get a cat?

Saturday, February 11, 2023

Eight weeks define my life


The most important period of my life was the first eight weeks of my kittenhood. The Jesuits, if they had been interested in cats not humans, would have known this. They said "Give me a child till he is seven years old and I will show you the man."

So give a kitten like me to loving humans until it is eight weeks old, and then you see see the adult cat.

I was lucky. I was given human love in my first eight weeks. So I grew up relaxed and happy around humans. Those weeks defined my future.

If I had been a feral kitten, born into the wild, I would have grown up to be feral. Without any gentle human handling, I would have feared humans probably for the rest of my life. I would have been miserable in a human home. 

Feral kittens can be rehabilitated, if they are rescued early enough, but it takes effort. There are some rehab ideas here -

Remember, you stupid humans, we need gentle handling from the second week of our lives. You can also read it here.






Saturday, February 04, 2023

Moonlight is my light

Moonlight is my favourite light, when I am in the country. The owls come out to glide silently across the sky or perch in the trees hooting. Deer step gracefully out of the woods to eat in the fields. Small rodents come out of hiding.

And I am at home in this twilight world. I can see clearly where humans are blinded by darkness. I can hear the smallest rustle of a vole in the grass.

Humans may notice a pair of eyes reflecting the moonlight but they cannot fully recognise my outline. This is my world, not theirs.

Even in the town, this kind of light makes me happy. Street lighting has more shadows than moonlight but still creates a kind of twilight. Only the glare of passing traffic headlights ruins the night.

Inside human homes there are bright light bulbs and noise TVs. Here in the street is my world.


Help for cats whose humans show behaviour problems.

This blog is devoted to the study of human behaviour. We cats, who live with this sometimes unpredictable and always feeble minded species, can benefit from seeing their behaviour in its proper scientific context. The study of feline dilemmas, training problems, and difficulties with humans, can only benefit all of us. All of us train our humans - to buy the right food, for instance, but many of us do not have knowledge of how to improve our training methods. The human species is obviously not as intelligent as the cat, but nevertheless can learn quite a lot - if properly managed. Topics of interest include the use of claw and order, purring as a human reward, rubbing your human up the right way, when to bite, spraying as a method of making our wishes known, ignoring the human, human harassment, human inattention and sheer human stupidity. I welcome your questions. Photos can be sent via my secretary's website, This blog has been chosen as one of the top 50 feline blogs by Online