Solution for Attention-Seeking Behavior
As with other behavioral problems, remedying attention-seeking behavior requires analysis of the possible causes, then dealing with them one-by-one, as there is sometimes more than one cause.
- Rippling Skin Disorder
This condition is often successfully treated with dietary change, elimination of fleas or toxins as a cause, medication, and/or planned exercise activities for the cat. Please read the linked article for more information.
- Begging for Food or Treats
Occasional treats are certainly not harmful, and for the overweight cat, are a viable substitute when the cat begs for food, particular treats of the high protein variety. Several small meals a day is actually better for cats than one big meal in the morning or evening. Schedule three or four small meals of canned food, picking up the remainder after 20-30 minutes, with perhaps one small meal of dry food in the evening, which you can leave down for the night.
- Insistent Pawing
Some cats are simple needy for more human attention. If the cat is the single cat in the household, you may want to adopt another cat for company. Otherwise, try to schedule special times for playing, lap-cuddling, and petting for these cats. Cats like routine, and if they know that laptime is coming soon, chances are they'll leave you alone.
- Insistent Meowing
Enjoy it, if you do like to talk back to your cat. If you're not particularly crazy about a "chatty cat," reserve your attention for times when he is quiet. On the other hand, if your cat is normally quiet and suddenly starts meowing insistently, (or if a normally talkative cat suddenly stops meowing) he could be trying to tell you he is in pain. A trip to the vet is indicated here, to rule out medical problems.
- PICA by Causes)
Since stress is so common to cats with PICA, it is important to rule out stress, or deal with it. Anxiety and stress can often be ameliorated by scheduling regular petting or play sessions in a quiet place. In rare cases, antianxiety drugs may be indicated.
- PICA can also be related to certain mineral deficiencies, so make sure kitty's diet is well-balanced.
It is also important to remove the inappropriate chewing/swallowing substances by picking up strings, small pieces of plastic, and rubber bands or to eliminate them as items of interest by cat-proofing electrical wiring with wrapping or bitter apple spray.
By doing your homework, knowing your cat's normal behavior, and keeping close watch over behavioral changes, you can go a long way in helping your needy cat eliminate attention-seeking behaviors.