Holding or carrying a cat is a difficult task for most people. This is mainly because the cat feels insecure being in the air, often reacting aggressively in an attempt to return to the safety of the ground.
Another determining factor in the fear a cat feels is the way it is lifted, which makes it extremely important for every feline lover to know how to hold your cat.
To carry or hold a cat, mutual trust is paramount. If the person does not make the feline feel comfortable with his presence, it will be impossible to carry him without resistance.
In order for the cat to be comfortable and trusting with the person who is going to hold it, it must first be “introduced”, that is, it must be accustomed to the presence and touch of the person. This is accomplished by carefully bringing the hand close to the feline, allowing the feline to rub on it or lick it. Afterwards, the person should stroke it a little to relax it.
The cat’s body language and mood are elements that should not be overlooked. If he or she is calm and even affectionate, there will be no problem, but if not, it is best to desist unless it is an emergency situation.
Guidelines for holding a cat
The person should provide the cat with support to prevent the cat from feeling nervous. Therefore, both hands must be used to hold the feline firmly, preventing its paws from hanging in the air.
Although the position in which the cat is to be held may vary slightly, it is important that the hind legs are always resting on something. Either on the person’s forearm or abdomen. It is important to place one hand or arm under the feline’s chest, keeping the front paws stable.
It is recommended to avoid lifting by the armpits or neck, as holding a cat in this way, a “traditional” but erroneous method, will cause high levels of stress and anxiety; increasing the risk of a physical attack and a breakdown in human-cat trust.
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