Something happened this morning that made me wonder why we/I treat dog and cat behavior differently. I'm lying in bed this morning, when Sophie jump up and joined me. First, she snuggled down near me, but after a few minutes, she tried to get on SU's pillow. He had gotten up earlier. I shooed her off the pillow and was pushing her to the spot that I wanted her in. BAD, BAD move on my part. She attacked me, bit and scratched the heck out of my hand. Sophie does not like being made to do anything she doesn't want to do. After the attack, she moved to the edge of the bed for a few minutes before coming back to my side, lying down and starting to purr.
What did I do? Absolutely nothing. I just started scratching her head.
If that had been a dog showing that kind of aggression, I'd have killed it. I will not put up with aggression in a dog. I won't live with a dog I can't trust. Sorry guys. No behaviorists here. The dog would be gone one way or the other.
BUT A CAT....I guess I just expect it more from a cat.
Do you react to cat or dog aggression differently?
No, flaming please. I'm just wondering why in our human nature we accept the behavior in one species, but not in another.
Eiderdowns That's My Buddy
CDX, RE, WC, CGC, TDInc.
Hmm, interesting question Monnie. I wonder if it is because we think of cats as being more delicate or the difference in size between us and them. What I mean is that some people who have really small dogs tolerate behaviour in them that would never be tolerated in a large dog. Could this be why? Or could it be that we perceive dogs as being trainable but cats as not.
Blackie and Ranger ...............................Reggie: 1996-2010 "Fly Reggie Fly"
Milo (kitty) will bite you if you try to pet his tummy. So, we don't pet his tummy.
You're right, I would never put up with a dog that bit me, I would ensure that they were properly aware of the "no bite" rules..... but cats are..... different.... ;D
I think it makes sense when you look at who/what they are in nature. Dogs are pack animals, meaning they look to you as their "leader", the one who provides resources, protection, etc. Cats are pretty much totally solitary in the wild, meaning they don't feel that they have any reason to look to you for anything, they don't have that ingrained respect and reverence for a more powerful "pack" member.
That's a big part of what I love about my cats. I know that when they are affectionate, they are 100% choosing to do so of their own free will, as opposed to dogs who will be affectionate at times because they feel they have to be to appease you, instead of truly wanting to be.
Baloo - 5 year old black lab
Peanut - 7 year old minpin
Monster - 3-ish year old frenchie/jack, rescue
I hope you are OK. Be careful about the bite because it can turn into a nasty infection.
I suppose that people who accept a cat into their life accept it as is, knowing they cannot be corrected or trained like a dog. It would be rare to see that behavior from a dog who you trained because it would have been corrected at the first growl. Judy bit me when she was a teen and i corrected the behavior and haven't seen even the slightest sign of aggression since; she has been the sweetest. If I had corrected a cat that way, I would have needed a trip to thew ER.
We treat them differently because they are so different. You can't compare a dog to a cat in any way, aside from the fact that they are domestic pets and they need to be fed, housed and watered. Regardless of how you treat or raise a cat, the relelationship that you have together will always be a very different relationship to that you have with your dog. Unlike dogs, you don't your 'train' your cat, your cat receives a limited amount of socialization (limited, mainly, to those that come in/out of your house) and your cats natural temperament is that of a creature which is independent, aloof, reserved, etc. Of course, not ALL cats fit those stereotypes, but hopefully you understand what I am saying.
Then you have the size difference. Cats can inflict nasty damage but they can't kill you.
Also, because of a cats independent nature, they can survive quite happily with minimal human contact. If you have an aggressive cat, you don't 'have' to come into contact with it. As long as it gets fed, watered, housed and you don't provoke it, an aggressive cat will keep itself to itself. They won't go looking for trouble. The same cannot be said for an aggressive dog. That dog will still require walking, etc., and purely on size alone, you can hardly ignore a 70lb animal in your house.
My cats don't bite me. Then again I don't play all that much with them, they are outside cats, barn cats. They appreciate a scruff behind the ears once in a while, and of course their meals which come every morning on the back porch, but beyond that I'm not much of a cat person. I'm pretty sure though if one attacked me I would have reacted by most likely throwing it off me. Can't throw a dog, but I'd have a serious come to Jesus meeting if my dogs ever tried to bite me as well. Same with my horse, she gets majorly popped if she attempts to bite me. I don't put up with it from any animal. So I guess I treat them all the same.
Exactly. I was actually trying (not the smartest move I've ever made) to correct Sophie for being on the pillow. Buddy has challenged my authority in the early days. He learned fast that it's not nice to fool with Mother. He's very happy to live by my rules. Sophie, on the other hands, makes her own rules. I pick and choose which ones of her rules I want to live with.Originally Posted by mitziandjudysmom
I do think it's that "live and let live" mentality. I won't bother you if you don't bother me. We live with cats. Dogs, on the other hand, we incorporate into our lives. I can just see us trying to obedience train and get obedience titles on a cat. LOL
I'm fine. Thanks. I cleaned it up and put antibiotic ointment on it.
Eiderdowns That's My Buddy
CDX, RE, WC, CGC, TDInc.
You'd be surprised how trainable some (emphasis on the 'some'!) cats are. Obviously, you have to approach training them differently to training a dog, but it can be done. My youngest cat, Ruby, 'sits' and 'downs' on command.