Top 10 cat behavior tips - Veterinary Medicine
  • SEARCH:
Medicine Center
DVM Veterinary Medicine Featuring Information from:

ADVERTISEMENT

Top 10 cat behavior tips
Pass these words of wisdom on to cat owners to put to immediate use.


VETERINARY MEDICINE


It is often necessary to use drug therapy to treat cases of refractory urine marking. Tricyclic antidepressants (amitriptyline, clomipramine) and selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (fluoxetine, paroxetine) are the drugs of choice to control marking. Amitriptyline is dosed at 0.5 to 1 mg/kg orally once or twice a day. The pill's bitterness and the marked sedative side effects make amitriptyline less appealing. Amitriptyline also lacks definitive data on efficacy, although anecdotal information is plentiful. Clomipramine dosed at 0.5 to 1 mg/kg orally once a day has been shown to be efficacious in treating urine marking.18-20 Fluoxetine dosed at 0.5 to 1 mg/kg orally once daily has also been shown to be highly effective in treating urine marking.21 And paroxetine dosed at 0.5 to 1 mg/kg orally once daily is another option for treating urine marking.22

If drug therapy is implemented, results are usually noted in one to four weeks. Treatment should be continued for a minimum of two to three months if successful. An attempt can then be made to wean the cat off the medication. Recurrence is probable unless environmental or social changes have occurred to reduce the motivation to mark. If a cat relapses with drug withdrawal, a second course of treatment appears to be just as successful as the first course.23

Jacqueline C. Neilson, DVM, DACVB
Animal Behavior Clinic
809 S.E. Powell Blvd.
Portland, OR 97202.

Dr. Neilson lectured on this topic at the 2005 Central Veterinary Conference. Her paper originally appeared in the conference proceedings.

REFERENCES

1. MacDonald DW, Yamaguchi N, Kerby G. Group-living in the domestic cat: its sociobiology and epidemiology. In: Turner DC, Bateson P, eds. The domestic cat: the biology of its behaviour. 2nd ed. Cambridge, England: Cambridge University Press, 2000;96-115.

2. Crowell-Davis SL, Curtis TM, Knowles RJ. Social organization in the cat: a modern understanding. J Feline Med Surg 2004;6:19-28.

3. Curtis TM, Knowles RJ, Crowell-Davis SL. Influence of familiarity and relatedness on proximity and allogrooming in domestic cats (Felis catus). Am J Vet Res 2003;64:1151-1154.

4. Liberg O, Sandell M, Pontier D, et al. Density, spatial organization and reproductive tactics in the domestic cat and other felids. In: Turner DC, Bateson P, eds. The domestic cat: the biology of its behaviour. 2nd ed. Cambridge, England: Cambridge University Press, 2000;119-147.

5. Bernstein PL, Strack M. A game of cat and house: spatial patterns and behaviour of 14 cats (Felis catus) in the home. Anthrozoos 1996;9:25-39.

6. Barry K, Crowell-Davis SL. Gender differences in the social behavior of the neutered indoor-only domestic cat. Appl Anim Behav Sci 1999;64:193-211.

7. Bradshaw JWS, Brown SL. A survey of current methods used by the Cats Protection League for the care and socialization of feral kittens. Report to the CPL. February 1996.

8. Karsh EB, Turner DC. The human-cat relationship. In: Turner DC, Bateson P, eds. The domestic cat: the biology of its behaviour. Cambridge, England: Cambridge University Press, 1988;159-177.

9. Turner DC. The human-cat relationship. In: Turner DC, Bateson P, eds. The domestic cat: the biology of its behaviour. 2nd ed. Cambridge, England: Cambridge University Press, 2000;194-206.

10. Lowe SE, Bradshaw JWS. Effects of socialization of the behaviour of feral kittens, in Proceedings. 3rd Int Congress Vet Behav Med 2001;28-29.


ADVERTISEMENT

Source: VETERINARY MEDICINE,
Click here