Do cats get jealous?

Cats make wonderful pets but these animals are not really big on showing affection to their owners. With the known independent and aloof personality, it is not uncommon for people to think that cats would only tolerate the attention (and affection) of the owners because these people are providing their basic needs. Instead of being owned just like other pets, cats have the tendency to own the pet parents. A change in the cat’s behavior caused by jealousy would be viewed by people as a farfetched idea. Is it really possible for a cat to get jealous? Cats are solitary animals but they can and do exhibit signs of jealousy.

Cats can get jealous of other pets. A new cat or a new dog would make the resident cat insecure. Cats can get jealous of people too. Pet cats are usually considered as the baby of the family. The pet cat will get all the attention and the love of the family. Cats are wonderful animals and one pet would not be enough for a cat lover. Another cat will be brought in. Another family member would want to have a dog for a pet thus a puppy will be added to the existing pets. The addition of new pets will make the cat jealous. The old pet will consider the new pets as rival for the affection of the family. The jealousy occurs because it is common for the family members to turn the attention to the new pets. Bringing a new baby home is supposed to be a happy moment until the cat that was once the baby of the family would manifest its jealousy. Yes, cats do get jealous of people too. Jealous will occur when the cat thinks that the new addition to the family will cause changes to the privileges, affection and attention it receives from the pet parents.

How would a cat manifest its jealousy? Signs of the cat’s jealousy widely vary. Cats have different personalities. A rather dominant cat would show its jealousy by hissing and growling. It would not be surprising for the cat to paw the new comer especially if the new pet has commandeered the spot viewed by the cat as its own territory. A shy cat would hide and stay away from the family. Other cats would have the opposite reaction to the presence of a “rival”. The once aloof cat would be underfoot as it would follow the owner everywhere. This is a very clear sign that the cat want to have all the attention of the owner.

Some pet owners are amused at the pet’s manifestation of jealousy. It is certainly an ego boost to see the affection and the devotion of the pet. However, a jealous cat is not a happy cat. Moreover, cat owners that are amused at the pet’s show of jealousy have to realize the possibility that the jealousy of the pet is not borne out of affection and devotion but of insecurity. The jealousy of the cat can be prevented by showing the resident cat that nothing has changed in the way it is loved and the way it is cared for. It would never be a good idea to allow the new pet to play with the toys of the cat and to reprimand the old pet if it manifests an aggressive behavior towards the newcomer. Cats would not be jealous if they feel that they are still loved. Although the novelty of having a new pet would make the family members to devote more attention to the new cat or dog, the old cat must receive the same attention too.

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