Cat gift cards
The Refined Canine



  Veterinarian Q & A

Julie Pomerantz D.V.M, is veterinarian practicing in New York City.

Feel free to submit your questions to Dr. Pomerantz and we will email you when they are posted. Because of the volume we can not answer all questions received.
Click here to submit your question

This information DOES NOT replace professional veterinary care. It is intended solely for educational purposes. Your pet's medical condition should be evaluated by a veterinarian before implementation of any medical or husbandry changes. If there is a potentially life-threatening emergency involving your pet, take your pet to a veterinarian or veterinary facility IMMEDIATELY.

April 2008

Edith asks "How do I get my cat to stop biting me?"

Hi Edith, I am sorry that you are having trouble with your cat! Biting behavior can occur for several reasons so more information about when the biting occurs, the cat’s history, health and environment would all be needed to try to identify the specific cause your cat’s behavior.

Of course the most important thing is to avoid injury to yourself and others. If you have been bitten or scratched you should consult your physician at once since these wounds can be serious and may lead to infection. An unvaccinated cat with possible exposure to Rabies that is displaying unprovoked aggression toward people should immediately be reported to your veterinarian or local animal control authority.

Some cats and kittens play too roughly. Kittens who grow up without feline playmates may not know the difference between play and what hurts. People should not encourage rough play with cats. Rough-housing that might be fun with a dog usually leads to claws and teeth with a cat! Non-contact games are a good way to teach appropriate play – chasing tossed toys (some cats will even retrieve!) and “fishing rods” with a toy or feather on the end are always fun!

Cats that become overstimulated while being petted or stroked may bite, or bite when the petting stops. It is important to know the cat, read its body language and to discontinue the interaction before it reaches that point. Keeping petting sessions short and redirecting the cat’s attention to a food treat or a tossed toy at the end of the session may create a positive endpoint to the interaction. Some cats are sensitive to certain kinds of touch - such as stroking on the back or rubbing the belly – avoidance of these areas is then indicated.

Inappropriate predatory behavior, stalking people or attacking as they pass can be a problem. A bell on the cat’s collar can help you keep tabs on him to avoid an ambush and a spritz with a water gun or a loud startling noise (shaking a can with coins inside) may work to divert an attack. Here again, non-contact games may provide an outlet for your cat’s hunting impulses. Cats may also display aggressive behavior as a response to environmental stimuli or fear. Identifying the trigger is vital to addressing these problems.

In all cases it is important to consult your cat’s veterinarian who can also check for possible medical causes of aggressive behavior – for example: cats with pain may react when touched or a cat with a metabolic or neurological disease may exhibit abnormal behavior. Your veterinarian can best advise you on your cat’s problem and can arrange for a referral to a certified veterinary behaviorist if needed.


Cat Furniture | Cat Towers | Cat Shelves | Litter Box Furniture | Cat Beds | FAQ | Policies | International | Links | Site Map
Copyright © 2012 RefinedKind Pet Products. The Refined Feline is a Registered Trade Mark