Cat Forum banner

1 - 8 of 8 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,745 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
I don't claim to be a "good cat handler", so I can't answer the question, but I'm certainly curious about those experts who are good at handling their own cats. Do you call yourself a "good handler" or do you think you are a good handler all cos your kitties allowed you to?

I asked this cos, I initially thought I handled ET very well especially when I was able to brush his teeth, clean his ears/eyes. But recent incidents, I realised its not about how good I am about handling ET, its more cos he allowed me to. He didn't mind me handling anywhere around his head, but not anywhere below his head, lol...like brushing his fur, clipping his nails, touching his body/tail.

Each time I wanna trim his nails, I had to talk to him alot, show him the nail clipper and wait for him to extend his claw before I start clipping w/o touch his paw. This time round, I decided to just pick up his paw and start clipping. 1st time, I managed to clip one nail, then he withdrew his paw and start licking it. Attempted the 2nd time, he withdrew his paw immediately and started licking his paw again. Third time, he showed me his displeasure by attempting to bite my hand, I had to release his paw and he started licking that paw again.

The same goes to wherever I touch below his head. After each fur brushing, he will start grooming himself or whenever I touch his body or tail, he will turn around and attempt to bite me.

So, with me, its all about what ET allows. He allowed me to brush his teeth, clean his ears/eyes cos he likes it. He allowed me to brush his fur cos he wanted his greenies treats.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
111 Posts
i think i'm a relatively good cat handler. i think this is both because my snickel allows me to and because we've built up trust with each other.

snick does not like her paws touched much. i do trim her nails about once a month, which she has been growing more comfortable with as time has passed. i do take trimming her nails as slow or as quickly as she seems to be comfortable with each time we do it, pausing for a minute or two as needed to reassure her.

i believe the more we have a routine, the more we do things like brushing and trimming nails, and the more we keep it as calm and as positive an experience as possible for our cats the more they become accustomed to these things being done.

have you tried giving ET some greenies treats after you trim his nails? or maybe you could give him one treat after you trim each nail or every two nails? kind of an incentive program for him.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
551 Posts
Haha - good discussion!

I'd have to say that for my cats it is what they allow. They trust me, but each has a different tolerance for nail trimmings, ears / eyes etc. I haven't done anything differently with them, I handle them the same but each has a very different tolerance for all of that. All of them allow me to do it (no biting or scratching) but two hate it and two let me do most anything.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
146 Posts
Cats can be handled? Haha. I kid... sorta. I have handled my fair share of strays and ferals, and I know how to not push my luck. I have never been badly scratched by a cat despite handling dozens upon dozens at this point. I personally own only one though. I'm good at reading Midas, and I stop pushing when I need to. It's not like dogs, I'll push a dog until I get what I need (nail clipping or medically that is, not for training), but I won't push I cat unless it is a one time thing, because a cat will remember, you can trick most dogs into forgetting something unpleasant if you know what you are doing. I can pretty much do anything with Midas because he can be swayed into complying. Am I going to try to trim his nails right before dinner? Of course not. But right after is the perfect time. I've even bathed him, despite him not really caring for getting wet. I can rub his belly, look in his mouth, and hold him like a baby, but only because he allows it.

The reason I can do anything with him is that I can read him very easily. It is very obvious when he is becoming intolerant of something, and if I keep pushing whatever I am doing I am going to get hurt. So, I am a good cat handler in that I can easily read when a cat is agitated, and in that I normally stop before it goes too far, but beyond that, it falls to the cat to behave or not, and also to give me fair warning signs. I cannot force a cat to comply without outside help (towels or other wraps work the best for everyone's safety).
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
2,539 Posts
There's a big strong male cat at the shelter called Nakada, who I really like but has shown aggression toward other volunteers. He definitely is a cat you have to read signals, but he's always liked me and been kind of a lap kitty for me.

Now, some people think because I have one aggressive cat I can handle, that I need to do the claw trimmings or other up-close activities for some of the others. Um, I am certainly not a cat handler and get my share of scratches. But it's good learning experience, the more you handle cats - we've had between 300-400 come through this year - the more you get used to their defense patterns and calming mechanisms and signals.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
7,862 Posts
I am definitely not a good handler, but I am a good cat handled. Most of my cats do not like to be picked up - so I don't. I definitely don't clip anyone's nails, and I do exactly what they tell me without having to ask twice.
 
1 - 8 of 8 Posts
Top