What Your Pet Is Secretly Trying To Tell You

Another title: Helpful Ways To Figure Out What Your Pet is Saying to You

It might be nice if you we could design special collars or helmets to relay our pets’ thoughts into English, but the truth is, if you pay careful enough attention, you can usually tell what your dog or cat is thinking without any special translation services.

If your pet is misbehaving, more often than not, s/he is trying to tell you something. Bad behavior is probably a good indication that you, her owner, aren’t satisfying her needs.

So, we can’t offer you a dog-ese to English dictionary, but we can help you learn to better communicate with your favorite furry companion.

Your cat spends a good amount of time licking herself clean, and especially if she’s an indoor cat, she probably enjoys keeping herself that way. If your cat sleeps in the litter box, there may be cause for alarm, but before bringing her to the vet to see if she’s suffering from a urinary infection, check if your feline friend is dealing with one of these issues.

  • King of the Castle- Cats can provide each other with companionship, but if one or two of your cats are bullying another, the victim may choose to hide out in the litter box to make sure his aggressors don’t restrict his access to it. Try setting up a separate litter box for each cat so one is always available.
  • Babies on the Way- Litter boxes are dark and enclosed, so a pregnant mother may hide there so her kittens will be safe from intruders when she gives birth. Provide a special box for your cat so she can give birth in a more sanitary location.
  • Safe and Sound?- Oftentimes, cats sleep in the litter box if they’re afraid of other people or animals in the house. Set up a quiet bed in a secluded area of the home for him to sleep in peace.

2. Your Cat Doesn’t Make the Litter Box

We as devoted cat lovers are used to combing cat fur off of our clothes, but no one wants cat pee on clothes. If your cat is missing the litter box, she may be sending you one of these messages.

  • Unsatisfactory Conditions: Cats are quite picky, and if there is not enough litter, the litter box walls are too high, the box is unclean, or she doesn’t have privacy, your cat may decide to relieve herself somewhere else.
  • Stressors: Cats get stressed out too. If you’ve recently moved to a new location or added a new pet or child to your household, you might find that your cat has occasional accidents while adjusting to a new environment or situation.
  • Conflicts in the House: If you have more than one cat, they may be competing for litter space. Make sure that you have enough litter boxes in the house so that they don’t all have to share the same one.

3. Excessive Barking

We’ve all had that one neighbor whose dog barks endlessly into the wee hours of the morning. You certainly do not want to be that neighbor. Barking is a normal way dogs react to strangers, but if your dog is barking excessively, he may be signaling something to you.

  • Dog in the Dog House: If you’ve got a busy lifestyle, it can be tempting to stick the dog outside and let her run around all day in a fenced-in yard, but dogs need affection and attention. If they’re crying all night in their dog house, they’re asking to come in and spend time with you.
  • Tidy Up Your Own Life: Dogs feed off of the energy of the people around them, and so if you are running around all day long, they’re likely to get caught up in the hustle and bustle. Take some time to organize your daily activities to restore order to your life for your sake and the dog’s.
  • Just Ignore Her: If you reward excessive barking with treats, attention, or frisbees, your dog will learn exactly how to get attention. If your dog is barking, don’t act intuitively by reacting to his every move. Instead, stay firm and don’t give in.

4. I’m not listening!

Certain dogs are easier to train than others, but if your dog never listens to you, then it might be the trainer’s fault. If you are constantly sending your dog out to the dog house, then consider changing tactics.

  • One Thing at a Time: Sit down! Stop! Enough! Get down! Off of that! Give me that shoe!....If this sounds like you, you might be overloading your dog with too many commands. One command at a time will be far more effective.
  • What Was That?: Your dog doesn’t understand your words, but she can respond to specific commands. It’s best to stick to a few usual commands then talking to her as if she could comprehend what you are saying.
  • Why Bother?: When you send a barrage of commands in your dog’s direction, you’re inadvertently teaching her that it’s okay not to listen the first time around. A single, firm command will actually prove more effective.

5. Puppy Dog Eyes

There’s nothing more irresistible than a puppy with big round eyes, but the fact of the matter is that feeding your buddy table scraps won’t do her any good. So, why is she begging, and is there a way to curb her appetite?

  • A Little Reminder- You’re not doing your dog a favor by feeding her table scraps. Obesity is a leading cause of death in dogs because excess weight will make their knees weak and give them diabetes. Do your dog a favor by only giving him dog food.
  • Kick Him Out- If you really can’t resist those adorable puppy dog eyes, keep the dog outside or in another room during dinner. Your dog doesn’t know how to take care of itself, so it’s your job to feed it properly.
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