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 dispel the myths and explain the true nature of our feline friends. Tracing the cat’s evolution from lone predator to domesticated companion, Bradshaw shows that although cats and humans have been living together for at least eight thousand years, cats remain independent, predatory, and wary of contact with their own kind, qualities that often clash with our modern lifestyles. Cats still have three out of four paws firmly planted in the wild, and within only a few generations can easily revert back to the independent way of life that was the exclusive preserve of their predecessors some 10,000 years ago. Cats are astonishingly flexible, and given the right environment they can adapt to a life of domesticity with their owners—but to continue do so, they will increasingly need our help. If we’re to live in harmony with our cats, Bradshaw explains, we first need to understand their inherited quirks: understanding their body language, keeping their environments—however small—sufficiently interesting, and becoming more proactive in managing both their natural hunting instincts and their relationships with other cats.
A must-read for any cat lover, Cat Sense offers humane, penetrating insights about the domestic cat that challenge our most basic assumptions and promise to dramatically improve our pets’ lives—and ours.
First Line: What is a cat?
Random Quote: In parts of Australia and New Zealand, cats are defined as "alien" predators introduced from the Northern hemisphere, and are banned from some areas and subject to curfews or compulsory microchipping in others. Even in places where cats have lived alongside native wildlife for hundreds of years, such as in the United States and the UK, their increasing popularity as pets has prompted a vocal minority to press for similar restrictions. Cat owners point to a lack of scientific evidence that pet cats contribute significantly to a population decline of any wild bird or mammal, which are caused instead mainly by the recent proliferation of other pressures on wildlife, such as loss of habitat.
Review: I love cats and have lived with them as far back as I can remember with only a few breaks. My very first cat friend was named Tigger, a huge feral tomcat who decided to take up residence with us and who put up with my pokes and prods with equanimity and kindness. He was a great cat. I've had the pleasure of living with many other cat friends since that time and never grow tired of their company. I like their independence, their different natures, the sense that these are relationships built and worked on over time. Cats, barely domesticated as they are, don't have to like you for their survival, they're not particularly inclined to like you, when they do like you it feels worthwhile.
|Our Current Master, Jaiden, on his Throne|
FTC Disclosure: Advance copy for review from publisher via Net Galley
Publishing Information: Basic Books - September 10, 2013
Reading Challenges: Non-Fiction/Non-Memoir Reading Challenge 2013