You love your cat as I do. But there is a size difference 🙂 Yes, pointless saying that except it is the reason why they are underfoot in the kitchen – especially. And if, like me, you routinely and efficiently (!) make a cup of tea first thing in the morning when barely awake, when your cat gets underfoot it can be dangerous for your cat and you.
THERE ARE SOME MORE ARTICLES ON HAZARDS TO CATS AT THE BASE OF THE PAGE.
This potential for treading on your cat and harming him can create anxiety and in turn anxiety can lead to irritation and, further in turn, this can express itself in a desire to vocalise your anxiety. You have to suppress this because you can’t shout at your cat just because he is smaller than you and wants his version of an early morning cup of tea: his favourite treat. Raising your voice at your cat is a definite no-no. It scares them and weakens the bond. Or it usually will but it depends on the cat’s personality.
So what do you do about it? Tell me in a comment please. You won’t, so I’ll tell you want I think is the only way to deal with it: look down and be observant!
I have seen articles about training cats to stop seeking attention but this is wrong in my view. Domestic cats need to seek our attention from time to time. We accept it from our partners, friends and lovers. We don’t try and train it out of them. It is a necessary part of social interactions.
It is a question of the cat caretaker being alert to the possibility that there little friend is down there, near the floor. When you turn from the kettle to the fridge to get some milk for your tea, you check the floor for him or her. It is more a question of self-training humans than training cats.
You see, I forget to do this sometimes which is my fault. It is my problem. It is my responsibility to protect my cat having taken on board the obvious fact that he is much smaller than me. We adopt our cats. We select them (well kind of) and are in charge. So we accept all the tricky little things that go with the relationship including our cat being underfoot.
But I’ll bet that there are others out there across the globe who have their irritated moments when their cat is right at their feet, behind them, and they turn and almost trip up over them and at the same time tread on their feet or tail. They yelp in pain and you yelp in irritation at a near-miss. We have to accept it and find ways to do better next time.
Cat underfoot is another one of many hazards for domestic cats in the home. It just happens that the cat’s guardian is the hazard.
Incidentally, the phrase ‘raised underfoot’ can describe the socialisation process of domestic kittens which is so vital to the creation of well balanced cats who get along with humans and other companion animals.
This can be a dangerous process in itself. When I stayed at A1 Savannahs in Oklahoma, USA, Kathryn Stucki told me that one of their very valuable F2 Savannah kittens was crushed by a workman who was temporarily in their home. Bingo: $10,000 down the drain and the death of a super kitten. Not a great outcome.