In our July Pet Health Matters newsletter, we'll be talking about some interesting pet behaviors, like cats drinking from faucets and dogs burrowing in the carpet. Here are some quirky pet behaviors explained.
When dogs meet each other, they like to sniff each other’s faces. That’s why they jump up on you when you come in the door. They’re shorter, but they still want to reach up and give you a canine greeting. To train your dog to stay down, wait to greet him or her until all four paws are on the floor. Give your pup lots of praise when he or she complies.
Some cats show affection by head butting their pet parents. Bumping heads is their way of saying they love you, and also of showing possession. Cats have glands in their foreheads that secrete pheromones, which have a subtle scent. These pheromones let other cats know that you’re taken.
Why do some dogs run around in tight circles chasing their tails? Tail chasing is a compulsive activity, like spinning, pacing, or fly snapping. These behaviors can develop out of nowhere, or in response to anxiety, boredom, or medical issues. If your dog displays a compulsive behavior, be sure to consult with your veterinarian.
Does it seem like your cat sleeps all day and plays all night? Although cats are domesticated, they may still feel the urge to romp after dark like their feline ancestors. If your cat wakes you at night, try tiring him or her out in the early evening with interactive play. You can also offer your kitty a meal before bed, so you don’t get woken up for food.
You can also find more information and advice on pet behaviors for cats and for dogs at the ASPCA’s website. We'll be running information on other interesting pet behaviors later this week.