Cat Behavior

Habitat Use of Suburban Cats: do they travel in the woods?

Owners’ of lost cats are frequently concerned with whether their cat might be hiding or lost somewhere in the woods.  This is a valid concern since 1) the probability of detection may be very low in the woods depending on the density and type of vegetation; 2) there may be many miles of woods surrounding …

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Coyotes Don’t Eat Cats Very Often

Most studies of urban/suburban coyotes have found that coyotes in these areas relied predominantly on natural food sources rather than human generated food such as trash, domestic animals, pet food, and domestic fruit (Gerht and Riley 2010; Morey et al. 2007).  The most common food items were leporids (rabbits) and rodents and occasionally deer or …

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Cat Research Study Overview

Before covering additional topics on cat behavior, I wanted to take a moment to review cat research in general.  Although the cat is the most popular pet in the US, there is surprisingly little research on its natural behavior.  So far I have only been able to find five research studies that focus on the …

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More Observations on Coyote-Cat Interactions: What Can We Learn?

This post relates to the earlier post “Observations of Coyote Predation on Cats.”  Although it may sound like I’m criticizing Grubbs and Krausman’s (2009) study, I’m not saying that we should disregard the results entirely.  As I said earlier, this is a fascinating research study and the only published study on observations of coyote-cat interactions.  …

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Observations of Coyote Predation on Cats

In 2009 Grubbs and Krausman published a study on “Observations of Coyote-Cat Interactions,” which was then dubbed “Coyotes Eat Cats!” by the media.  This is a very interesting study since it is the only published research on direct observations of coyote-cat interactions.  However, I’m skeptical that this high level of coyote predation on cats is …

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The Importance of Shelter for Lost, Stray, and Feral Cats

Pet detectives may advise owners’ of lost cats to search locations that offer safety and familiarity to the lost cat.  The general knowledge is that domestic cats will seek shelter in locations that most closely resemble locations that they are familiar with; therefore, a house cat is most likely to seek shelter near or in …

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What is the average size of a cat's home range?

A cat’s home range is the area that the cat normally uses in its daily activities.  A home range is different from a territory in that it may not be defended from other cats, but non-biologists frequently use the terms interchangeably.  When an outdoor-access cat goes missing, it probably means that something has happened to …

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GPS versus Radio-Tracking: pros and cons for finding cats

Please note, this article is no longer being updated.  I have since written a new article which better describes the differences between GPS and radio-trackers and highlights a few of my recommended products.  Be sure to check out: Best Cat Tracking Devices. There are both GPS trackers and radio-tracking devices available to help you find …

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