How to pick up a cat properly without receiving a scratch on the face?
You must know how to pick up a cat properly because handling felines is a very risky process. The bossy nature of cats is known to all as they like their space and status to be respected and not intruded on without permission. Every feline has different preferences when it comes to handling and you will learn the basics of the process of picking up cats rightly as you will continue to read.
Troubles of cat during handling
If a cat doesn’t like to be held, it can be due to the following factors:
- Preference for space and control
- Scared of contact
- Mishandling in the past
- The trauma of rejection by the mother cat
- Pain due to health issues like arthritis
- Sense of humiliation or disrespect
- Anger, stress, or aggression issues
Mechanism of picking cats properly
We have divided the whole process into clear stages and each one of them is equally important to follow.
Make the right approach
The first step about how to pick up cat is starting with the right approach to be made towards the cat instead of pouncing upon her and ending up scratched at worst. You need to observe the body language of your cat to understand if it’s relaxed or not. The relaxed mode of the cat usually features normal eyes, relaxed body posture, still tail, forward-facing ears, un-stretched fur, and no vocalization.
Once that ensured, walk towards the cat very calmly and without making any noise that can startle her into defense. Now you need to check if the cat wishes to be touched at all and for that, stretch out your hand to her for sniffing. If she sniffs it with a relaxed gesture, then it’s a thumbs-up but you need to back off if it declines your approach.
As a follow-up, start petting the cat now for some time and observe how it reacts. If your cat still remains relaxed throughout just like it has been all the while and lets everything come on smoothly, it is ready to get picked up. If you observe any change in the body language, that’s when you deter.
The technique of picking up
If the first step goes well, you have to now put the right technique in use for picking up the cat which can be challenging but will come out right with practice. Each step that you take need to be very calm and smooth. The main idea of the right technique about how to pick up a cat properly is that putting more of your body points in contact with the body of the cat makes it feel more relaxed and comfortable.
Holding the cat rightly
Now that you have lifted the cat, you can continue to hold her in arms for as long as the cat starts showing signs of discomfort and that wouldn’t be too long. You can wrap your arms around the kitty and keeping her close to your chest is important. Allow the cat to make any move in your arms freely.
Keep an eye on the body language of the cat while it is in your arms. As soon as she starts showing signs of discomfort like growling, tail twitching, body tensing, etc., it’s a signal that she wants it out of your hug now.
Releasing them safely
It is equally important to release your cat out of the hug safely and correctly. You can either put her back in the previous place or put her at a different spot depending upon the requirement. It will be better to kneel to few inches above the ground and allow the cat to jump out of your hands safely to keep her safe and yourself too from any back claw scratches.
Picking up kittens rightly and safely
The same process that we explained above about how to pick up cat applies to the kittens too. However, you might feel intimidated by their smallness and may want to take some extra caution. You can do that by being even gentler in the hold as the kittens might just fit into your palm and that’s even better for better control.
It is important to pick kittens rightly as wrong holds can leave a lifelong impact on their mind and might even turn out to traumatic.
Mistakes to avoid while picking up cats
The lesson about how to pick up a cat properly cannot be complete without knowing what mistakes you need to avoid and here are some of the crucial things to remember:
Tips on handling reluctant cats
If a cat doesn’t like to be held, then there is probably nothing you can do to pick her up. However, you can make her comfortable with being picked up, and here are the things you can do:
We hope you must have understood how to pick up a cat properly by now and will be careful the next time you need to handle your cat. The key is keeping patience on your part and allowing the pet to give you the sign of willingness. If any of these things go missing, the consequences can be bad.