How to Get a Cat to Like You | Lifehacker

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05:59   |   Nov 14, 2018


How to Get a Cat to Like You | Lifehacker
How to Get a Cat to Like You | Lifehacker thumb How to Get a Cat to Like You | Lifehacker thumb How to Get a Cat to Like You | Lifehacker thumb


  • (whistles)
  • - All right, up.
  • Good boy.
  • You don't have to do anything to get a dog to like you.
  • Some treats help but most dogs
  • will get along with humans right away.
  • We've been breeding that into them for all of human history.
  • Cats, however, are very different.
  • While they have been living near us for about 5,000 years,
  • we've only been breeding them for about 200.
  • So they're basically still wild animals.
  • (cat meow)
  • When cats behave very differently from dogs,
  • we misinterpret that as them being mean or unfriendly.
  • A cat doesn't have to be unfriendly.
  • You just have to do a different kind of work to win them over.
  • (smooth music)
  • Today we're gonna meet Cosmo the cat.
  • Just like people, every cat is different.
  • If they don't love you right away,
  • don't take it too personally.
  • (upbeat music)
  • If you own a dog, you know that they love new smells,
  • and investigating, and rolling around in them,
  • and getting them all over themselves.
  • Cats are the opposite.
  • An unfamiliar scent can turn them off.
  • So if you're worried about bringing that kind of smell
  • into the cat's home,
  • you could spray yourself with a pheromone,
  • like Comfort Zone or Feliway.
  • These are a bit expensive.
  • They're usually for cat owners
  • trying to protect new furniture.
  • But if you're new furniture
  • and you wanna take this to the next level,
  • you could bring this with you,
  • spray yourself just once or twice on the torso,
  • let it settle in for a couple of minutes
  • and this may help calm a cat.
  • (curious music)
  • Ever notice how a cat gravitates right toward the one
  • allergic person in the room?
  • They go past everyone else who's trying to attract the cat,
  • going, here kitty, kitty.
  • (smacking kisses)
  • Yeah, don't do any of that.
  • Spend some time actually ignoring the cat.
  • That gives them space to scope you out on their own terms.
  • (curious music)
  • Let's try a technique from cat guru, Jackson Galaxy.
  • He calls it, the Michelangelo.
  • The idea is, instead of reaching your hand out like this,
  • which can be intimidating,
  • you let it dangle.
  • You make maybe a loose fist, one finger poking out,
  • a little like a cat nose.
  • Cats don't see very well up close,
  • that's why they have whiskers.
  • So, you don't wanna be shoving this in their face.
  • You're holding it and waiting for the cat to come to you.
  • It investigates, maybe invites you to scratch.
  • And then you try to.
  • It still may reject you at that point.
  • It might ignore you all together.
  • You just have to be patient
  • and let the cat take the lead.
  • (upbeat music)
  • The safe zone for petting is different for every cat.
  • But Tom McNamee, author of the Inner Life of Cats,
  • recommends that you start with the spots that a mother cat
  • would nuzzle her kittens.
  • That can be behind the ears, or the base of the tail.
  • (upbeat music)
  • All cats are naturally territorial
  • so they're very conscious of their environment.
  • You don't wanna be a big imposing creature in their space.
  • Get down on the floor, meet them on their level.
  • Don't block the exits.
  • If they feel like they can come and go,
  • they're more likely to come back to you.
  • (curious music)
  • Here's one I have a lot of trouble with.
  • I love to stare a cat right in the eyes.
  • But that can be counterproductive.
  • That's the look they give when they're hunting
  • and you're doing that to them.
  • Instead, you wanna give a long, slow, blink.
  • That shows that you're disarming,
  • you're relaxed, and friendly.
  • You're not hunting them.
  • (upbeat music)
  • A great modern toy is the laser pointer.
  • I love making a cat chase it around.
  • This is especially good with a new cat.
  • According to cat behaviorist, Mieshelle Nagelschneider,
  • if you get the cat in hunting mode,
  • they're more comfortable.
  • They forget to be afraid of you.
  • Point the laser under furniture and other hiding spots
  • to better simulate prey that runs and hides from your cat.
  • Then either lead them to a treat or lead them back to you
  • and give them a treat.
  • Let them catch their prey
  • so that they don't get bored very quickly.
  • (smooth music)
  • Let's ramp this up beyond treats.
  • If you work with the owner,
  • you can feed the cat its regular meal.
  • That establishes you as a potential provider
  • worthy of trust and affection.
  • One more tip from Jackson Galaxy,
  • is to keep a special jackpot treat
  • that only comes from guests.
  • Cosmo has never had this particular treat before.
  • So, ideally, we get him to associate me with the treat.
  • Adam won't give you these.
  • These are just special guest treats.
  • Keep them in the house, when people come over,
  • hand them the treat, maybe even before they come indoors.
  • Then every visit from a guest is like a visit from Santa.
  • As long as you understand cats from their perspective,
  • you'll be a better cat friend.
  • The things they do could be really weird to humans.
  • They definitely don't behave the same way dogs do.
  • I just learn to go along with it.
  • And let him know that whatever he does, I won't hurt him.
  • I'm his friend.

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Win the affection of any feline friend with these foolproof cat hacks.
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