Understanding What's Different About Cats (1911)
Companion Animal Medicine |  Feline
Sunday |  8:00 AM -  8:50 AM
Henry B. Gonzalez Convention Center||302BC



Ilona Rodan DVM, Dipl. ABVP, Feline
Cat Care Clinic

Dr. Ilona Rodan is passionate about feline medicine and behavior, and strives to help others understand cats and their unique behaviors. She spearheaded feline-friendly handling to prevent feline fear and pain, and to prevent human injury and stress. She has lectured and published extensively on this topic and other behavior and pain-related topics. From 1987 to 2015, she was the medical director and owner or the Cat Care Clinic, Madison, WI. Rodan is the co-editor and author of the book, Feline Behavioral Health and Welfare, which was published in 2015. Dr. Rodan is the 2005 AVMA Animal Welfare Award recipient. When she is not working, she loves walking, hiking, snorkeling, and kayaking.

Presentation Info

CE Credit(s): 1.00
CE Level: 1


Despite its popularity, pet cats are frequently misunderstood, leading to poor welfare and behavior problems. Felis catus’ primary function is to be a successful solitary hunter and survivor, and that requires self-protection from potential threats within the environment regardless if it is the home, outdoors, or the veterinary practice. Feline behavior can be fascinating when the puzzle pieces are put together to provide a safe environment where each cat’s social, physical, and emotional needs are met.

Learning Objectives

1. Although America's most popular pet, the cat remains an enigma. Fortunately, as we continue to learn about this species, we can better understand it and the differences between cats and the more social species - humans and dogs.

2. Cats are solitary hunters and territorial animals that need a safe but enriched environment to perform their normal behaviors. It is important to educate clients about normal cat behavior and the cat's needs.

3. Although social animals, people choose friends for their pet cats, a common cause of intercat conflict, stress, and behavior problems. Client education about each cat's environmental needs can help resolve these problems.

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