How — and if — to pet a cat

How — and if — to pet a cat

A cute cat can be irresistible. But swooping in for a cuddle is just too much for most cats.

Family felines may seem worlds away from their wild cousins, but their thought processes aren’t so different. Wild cats are often solitary, because they like it that way, and many housecats are of the same mind.

For cats, human interaction is a learned process, best begun when a kitten is two to seven weeks old. But no matter when it begins, a cat needs to feel it has some control over the process.

Offering your hand for a smell is a start. Once that’s accepted, most cats like to be touched on the cheeks, under the chin and at the base of the ears. Keeping tabs on body language will help you know when the cat’s had enough.

In spite of your best efforts, just accept the fact some cats can only be admired from a distance.

Related Episodes