Getting your cat’s purr-mission is simply another way of being sensitive to your cat’s desires and requirements – understanding feline behavior. I like the idea, though, of asking your cat for permission or consent to pet them. Although, it’s not quite like asking for permission. It’s more about reading body language and being aware as to how far you can go in petting your cat. I believe that a lot of people now understand that domestic cats don’t automatically love being petted for as long as they want to pet them.
Normally, domestic cats do like to be stroked and petted by their human guardian, and it is done billions of times on the planet every day. But there are limits to it from the cat’s perspective. There are limits as to where it can be done and for how long.
I believe that ninety percent of cat owners are aware of this. I’m not going to go over it in detail as I have written about it before. Here are two example pages chosen at random but there are others:
It’s about respecting the cat, as I call it. Respecting their wishes and what they like and dislike. Also, not every cat likes to be on a person’s lap or to be picked up. These are two more examples where purr-mission should be sought.
People like to pick their cat up sometimes because they’re much smaller than us and sometimes they want to raise them up to their level so they can interact more easily. Most cats accept this. If it doesn’t come naturally to them, they learn to accept it. However, some domestic cats like it more than others or accept it more readily than others. The owner should be aware of their cat’s emotional response to being picked up.
We also know that there is the right way and the wrong way to pick up a cat. Once again is about respecting the cat. I still see photographs of children holding cats in the wrong way. That is because their parents have not taught their children how to carry a cat which means supporting the body and not stressing the part of the cat which is held by the person.
So, you ask your cat for permission. You obtain their consent. You do that by, as mentioned, by observing their body language and general demeanour and of course through years of interaction with your cat to the point where you fully understand her and know what is acceptable and unacceptable.
SOME MORE ON PETTING: