Cats are more likely to have behavioural issues if they live with other felines, survey shows 

Fighting like cats and… cats! Moggies are more likely to have behavioural issues if they live with other felines, survey shows 

We have long reached for the phrase ‘fighting like cats and dogs’ to describe those who are constantly at each other’s throats.

But a survey of vets has revealed that fighting like cat and cat might be a more suitable adage.

Surgeons across the country say cats are more likely to be stressed and have behavioural issues when they live with other cats, than with dogs or other pets. 

We have long reached for the phrase ‘fighting like cats and dogs’ to describe those who are constantly at each other’s throats (file image)

The survey, carried out by the British Veterinary Association (BVA), asked 520 vets to identify the most pressing health and welfare issues of cats who attend their practices. Results revealed 41 per cent cited behaviour problems or stress associated with being in a ‘multi-cat’ household.

Meanwhile issues linked to being housed with other animals – such as dogs – were mentioned by only 7 per cent.

Dr Justine Shotton, president of the BVA, said there are three main factors that influence the success of a multi-cat household.

Surgeons across the country say cats are more likely to be stressed and have behavioural issues when they live with other cats, than with dogs or other pets (file image)

Surgeons across the country say cats are more likely to be stressed and have behavioural issues when they live with other cats, than with dogs or other pets (file image)

‘The first is the compatibility of cats in the group,’ she said. ‘And the best compatible cats we tend to see seem to be litter mates, so siblings. The second is the availability and accessibility of resources such as food, water, litter trays and cat flaps. And the third is population density. If you have a small flat with ten cats, it is probable those cats are quite stressed.

‘But if you have a couple of cats and they get to go outside, they might have lower levels of stress.’ Indications that a cat may be stressed include frequent meowing, over-grooming, scratching, inappropriate urination and aggressiveness.

But having a dog in the house could make cats less stressed because they have different resources and may not have to share things such as food and water bowls. The survey results will be presented today at the BVA Live event in Birmingham at a session sponsored by Mars Petcare.

Read more at DailyMail.co.uk

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.