This is a discussion thread · 9 replies
Anonymous:I'm always a bit hesitant on touching wild cats when they approach me. If they are friendly towards you, do you pet them regardless of possible dangers (scratching, disease, fleas etc)?
I don't.. I used to when I was a child but somehow common sense told me to stop that. Maybe I'm wrong but I'd rather not risk the cat scratching/biting me and I end up having to get a shot. You never know what'll rub them the wrong way.
I don't either. I actually had a bad experience where one of the town cats bit my hand and I ended up having a serious infection. She knew me, but one wrong touch at the wrong time and a wild cat can make you regret having touched her
I don't touch wild cats but when I see a cat is obviously domesticated and friendly, I sometimes can't resist... while yes, common sense says it's not a super great thing to do. I always stop any petting immediately if I see the cat doesn't enjoy it or anything.
Depends, most feral cats are safe to touch health wise. A scratch won't do anything to you. most diseases are passed through stool or orally meaning you have to get bitten in order to get it. another thing is discharges it can be saliva (which is the same as oral) or eye discharge which again probably won't make you sick but if you have other pets at home it might make them sick. That being said anyone who is trying to approach and touch a cat especially a feral cat should read their body language. A cat will never ever attack you for no reason, cats will warn you time and again being vocally or with body language telling you to get away from them, not reading those signs will get you in trouble. Most humans you meet will be freaked out if you just come up to them and start touching them. People just assume because an animal has fur it enjoys being touched and petted which is not the case, a lot of feral cats that never came in contact with humans do not like being touched or just feel uncomfortable. So you should always read the cats body language, let it smell your hand and approach you at his own time, if he enjoys being petted you can be sure he will let you know! it is also best to avoid touching areas like the lower back, belly and legs which can stress out any cat if their not used to itAnd obviously if the cat has fleas has eye discharges is drooling or shows any signs of being sick you probably wouldn't want to touch them anyways.
Well said, Joleen! Yes, a cat's body language is very important and one must pay attention to it if he's about to touch a kitty. What I usually do is squatting down and letting a cat smell my hand first, only then I may or may not stroke him or her. I was never told I have to do so but I've always been doing it intuitively. Oh and one more thing, I always wash my hands after I've petted a cat, even my own cat, hehe.
Yup and that's actually the case with any animal in my opinion. I also never pet an animal on the head but do it under the chin or neck, just imagine a huge hand approaching your face that would be extremely scary!
i dont think a truly wild cat will ever let anyone touch itself. it will hiss. but domestic cats that are allowed to walk outside can let you pet them. i for instance often pet my neighbour's cats.
Not at all.. There are a lot of feral cats that will let you touch them without problem. I had cats walk into my house many times to ask for food or just some company and they don't belong to anyone. Usually a feral cat that hisses at humans has a good reason and it can be anything from being abused to the way another human approached them in the past.