Cat Sense: How the New Feline Science Can Make You a Better Friend to Your Pet Audible Audiobook – Unabridged
Cats have been popular household pets for thousands of years, and their numbers only continue to rise. Today there are three cats for every dog on the planet, yet cats remain more mysterious, even to their most adoring owners. In Cat Sense, renowned anthrozoologist John Bradshaw takes us further into the mind of the domestic cat than ever before, using cutting-edge scientific research to explain the true nature - and needs - of our feline friends. Tracing the cat’s evolution from solitary hunter to domesticated companion, Bradshaw shows that cats remain independent, predatory, and wary of social contact, qualities that often clash with the demands of our modern lifestyles.
If we’re to live in harmony with cats, Bradshaw contends, we first need to understand and adapt to their ancient quirks. A must-listen for any cat lover, Cat Sense challenges our most basic assumptions about cats and promises to dramatically improve their lives - and ours.
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|Listening Length||11 hours and 1 minute|
|Audible.in Release Date||10 September 2013|
|Best Sellers Rank|| #21,812 in Audible Books & Originals (See Top 100 in Audible Books & Originals) |
#6 in Cats & Cat Care
#427 in Biological Sciences
#963 in Pets & Animal Care (Books)
Top reviews from other countries
The information regarding how cats "learn" is laughably incorrect, especially in regards to concepts such as conditioning, and the majority of the book seems to "explain" behaviours by comparing cats to dogs (and how terrible cats are at doing the things dogs can do), going back and comparing wildcats to domestic or feral cats and using the "solitary predator" explanation for just about EVERYTHING.
If you know anything about cats, biology, animal behaviour/conditioning or training DO NOT WASTE YOUR MONEY. I'm glad I got this as a freebie with a gift voucher.
John Bradshaw is, happily, a believer, and his cats Splodge, Lucy and Libby (nothing on the naming of cats, perhaps dealt with in his way by T. S. Eliot ‘The Naming of Cats is a difficult matter,/ It isn't just one of your holiday games;/ You may think at first I'm as mad as a hatter /When I tell you, a cat must have THREE DIFFERENT NAMES.’ — am I alone in thinking those rhymes are contrived?) and none of the fascinating cat facts presented seem to have been acquired by cutting them open.
Actually, the early history of the cat is uncertain (how were they domesticated? By whom? The Natufians? — how much further forward does that get us) and the later history of the cat is distressing. Still, the book is full of information.
A lot of this information passes before your eyes several times. Among the many attractive beasts, who did not become the domestic cat, for example, ‘were sand cats, Felis margharita, large eared nocturnal animals that [WAIT FOR IT] hunt by night, using their acute hearing’ (18). And lest it be thought this recourse to pleonasm is momentary aberration, just over the page we find ‘As its name implies, the fishing cat is a strong swimmer and specializes in [WELL, WITH A NAME LIKE THAT, WHAT WOULD IT SPECIALIZE IN?] catching fish’ (20).
Bis repetita placent, said someone who could well have been Horace, and who, in any event, had not read this book. Among the oft-repeated truths are: wild cats (now) have domestic DNA; Egyptians regarded cats as useful; cats hunt; black genes are recessive; mice are a balanced diet, but until recently, cat food was not; dogs are domesticated longer than the cat; dogs can be trained to do lots of things, whereas semi-domesticated cats only really do ONE thing; cats are naturally solitary, and need to learn to socialize with others of their kind, as well as with dogs; cats are territorial; the gesture consisting of holding the upright is probably recent… &c &c.
While it is true that some truths do not bear infinite repetition, this ought not to obscure the fact that there are many rich and fascinating insights in the book, which will give the ailurophile useful glimpses of the workings of the feline mind.
There are things it does not explain:
1) Why does a cat who has just peeped out of the back window and discovered it is raining, then go to the back door in the hope the weather might be better there?
2) Why do cats, exclusive carnivores, inspect Waldorf salads and bowls of tomatoes with envious glances?
3) Why do cats always look askance on cat food?
4) Why do cats knead/pound?
5) Where did the myth that cats like milk come from, given that many won’t touch it?
6) Why is it impossible to give a cat a present that isn’t food?
7) Why do cats, who generally avoid water, meow to be let into the bathroom?
8) Why do some cats chew plastic (but it is explained that come cats gnaw fabric)?
9) Why will a cat who finds its owner reading ALWAYS seek to insinuate itself between eyes and page?
10) When there is a shirt on a clean and soft duvet, why will the cat always sit ON the shirt?
11) Whenever a box is left on the floor, why will a cat always step inside, and assume a pose of immense seriousness?
12) Do cats enjoy speech?
13) Do cats like having Radio 4 on?
Perhaps there is a place for a book about cat owners? Why do you laugh at cats (the electronic media seem to exist for that purpose)? Why do we say ‘Who’s a silly girl?’? Why do we talk to cats? Why does an even quite comfortable house with no cat in it seem unbearably dull?
I did come away after reading this book with a feeling of wellbeing, though, and my faith strengthened.
There is a wealth of detail on the history of the domestication of the cat which, at times, makes for grim reading and I advise a certain amount of caution, as it is quite harrowing.
I have a theory that no one should be able to keep an animal without sitting some kind of test, and this would be required reading if that ever happened!