you know? Cats can bite!
Like our best human and canine kids, our feline kids can exhibit behavior problems
just as frequently. With sharper claws and teeth, you might forget that
your little yip-yip nipped you in the past, but you will never forget a
Cats tend to have more bacteria in their mouth and on their teeth,
especially if they donít eat dry food to scrape off plaque and tartar.
Dogs often chew on items that help remove their plaque, which helps to
keep their mouths cleaner. You also have the added threat of bacterial
infection due to the hunting hobby of your outdoor kitty. Rats and mice
are known carriers of all kinds of bacteria such as salmonellosis,
leptospirosis and trichinosis.
Children are more at risk for cat bites than dog bites, as cats are less
tolerant of being touched than dogs are.
Cat bites become infected more often because the bacteria that cats carry
orally is called anaerobic, which thrives in an environment without
oxygen. When a cat bites, often they claw you as well and this bacteria
from it's teeth and the litter box is left behind in the tissue,
multiplying at an alarming rate, because the wounds are more like fine
needle-like punctures, which seal back over, leaving the bacteria in a
little pocket to multiply from the heat of your body and the lack of
oxygen. This can be extremely dangerous to a young child that has not yet
developed a strong immune system. Dog bites on the other hand, are usually much deeper and wider,
causing much more bleeding than a cat bite, which helps to clean out some
of the initial bacteria. Dogs also donít claw, so with cats, you often
suffer from two kinds of wounds, rather than just one.
Cat bites often occur because children have not been taught proper
handling of pets or they are too young to learn and have been left
unsupervised with a cat. Often, an indoor cat that is being territorially taunted
by an outdoor cat through a door or window can in turn, make him attack a
child who approaches him during this emotionally heightened situation. It can happen
to adults when petting a strange cat that doesnít trust them. One moment it looks as if
theyíre enjoying your affections and the next minute they grab your hand
and sink their teeth into you. For this reason, never allow a child to pet
a strange animalÖdog, cat, bird or otherwise. You can also get
inadvertently bitten if you try to break up a fight between two cats.
If your cat is a repeat biter, youíll need to hire an animal behaviorist
who can help you discover why your cat behaves the way he does and to help
you fix the problem before anything really serious happens - like a child
losing an eye.
The most important thing to remember is to never, ever, hit an animal that
bites you and to educate your children not to either. This is not only because itís simply cruel to do so, as many
animals donít understand what they did wrong - but you may be setting
yourself up for further attack. Instead, remove yourself and/or child from the animalís
presence and call your veterinarian for assistance and guidance. Often,
with a little love and patience, cat problems, even serious ones, can find