Essay On Cat House

722 Words3 Pages
Effects of group-housing of domestic cats in an animal shelter To improve the welfare of cats in animal shelters, efforts have been made to enrich their housing. One big change was the switch from single cages to larger rooms where the cats are housed in groups. This change was made to enrich housing by providing more space and other cats to interact with. But actually to cats, group housing can be more stressful then enriching. The social environment of a group housed cat in an animal shelter forces it into unnatural social contact. Domestic cats are flexible in their ability to live together with conspecifics. When there is enough food available and there is no need to compete, cats can peacefully live side by side. However, the composition of groups in cat shelters, are unnatural.…show more content…
Nowadays cats are known to be capable of living in social groups. A study observed free-ranging cats and found that cats choose to live in groups called colonies that remain relatively consistent over a long period of time. They found that these groups usually are based on related females. Relationships also occur between nonrelated cats and rely on strong familiarity. Cats recognize their colony members and aggression is exhibited towards unfamiliar, non-colony members. New members can be added to the group, but only slowly after established familiarity. However in households or shelters, cats cannot choose who to live with. The composition of groups rely on their care-takers and therefor vary from naturally formed groups by free-ranging cats. Groups might never formed without human intervention, for example when several adult males are kept together. Individual cats may or may not be related and can be acquired separately or together. In this way cats are forced into social groups which can cause problems and stress. Besides that, groups in animal shelters are variable and there is no time to build a colony based on

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