Tuesday, 11 February 2014

Cat Sense, by John Bradshaw

Why I read it & Podcast: Fresh Air

Brow: Since cats are the highest brow, reading books about them must be impossibly high.

Summary: Bradshaw is an anthrozoologist at the University of Bristol and owner of 3 cats, though this book is largely the result of his actual research into cat behaviour and emotions. He argues that cats are not nearly as far along in their evolution from pest controllers to purr factories, and the lifestyle we expect them to lead now, where they are pampered, worshiped, and in my case at least, literally brought food on a platter, food that is often more expensive on a per-kilo basis than my own, I might add, is actually stressing them out, because we expect them to live in close proximity to other cats and not claw our furniture in exchange for the above. The book is also stuffed full of tips for the cat owner, such as how to tell what your cats think of each other (mine get along fine) and what kinds of toys they like (the ones they know they've killed because they fell apart. He does not explain how you are supposed to afford this).

Who should read this: Well, obviously anyone who has a cat, which is now the most popular domestic pet today, so that's a lot of people. You can probably skip the history chapters if you're looking for a quick read, but the behaviour, interaction and emotions chapters are indispensable reading for the ailurophile.

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