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You don’t train cats, cats train you!

complete guide to cat training cover

Good Cats
The Complete Guide to Cat Training
Kaplan
1985

Yet another author steps up for a chance to convince me that cats will do what I say. At best, I believe the concept of a “trained cat” is the equivalent of a unicorn. As far as I’m concerned, the only ones trained in this relationship are the humans. All cat owners servants know this. My theory is that these particular authors have a cat so evil, that these poor humans think they have “trained” cats.

Excuse me, I am being paged by some cats to fill bowls with food before they starve.

Mary

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How Smart is Your Cat?

The Cat IQ Test coverThe Cat I.Q. Test: Measure your cat’s brainpower and social skills and discover your strengths as an owner
Miller
1996

When I saw this title in a library catalog I was searching, I thought it must be a book of humorous essays about cats. I like a cat story as much as the next librarian, so I requested it through interlibrary loan. I should have read the subtitle more carefully, though, because this book is absolutely serious! It explains that some breeds are smarter than others, and how you can find out what your cat’s IQ is.

The idea that some animals are generally more intelligent than others is nothing new, and I can even get on board with the idea that like people, some cats are more intelligent than other cats. I can even think of specific people who would take the time and trouble to score their cat’s IQ. There is definitely an audience for this book, and the public library in which it was found is even a reasonable place for it.

So, it’s not an awful library book at all! I’m featuring it here because it’s a little quirky, and because what I assumed was a joke turned out to be a real thing. I’m not sure what you are supposed to actually do with the information once you score your cat’s IQ, but if you’d like to know, this is the book for you.

I’m pretty sure Mary’s cats are both eligible for Mensa. Smart little critters.

-Holly

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Training Muffin to “sit”

well behaved cat coverGuide to a Well-Behaved Cat
Maggitti
1993

So along with diet books, books about holding creative meetings, or books on parenting a teenager, this cat training book will join the ranks of other books that I classify as nonfiction pipe dreams. (It really needs its own subject heading.) Again, we have an expert patiently explaining how to make a cat “sit”.  I attempted the “sit” technique with my cat and was treated to a condescending look followed by a hiss. Of course, later while trying to read, said cat decided it was time for lots of petting and affection. I readily admit that I am manipulated by my cats and there is no hope for me.

Yet another pipe dream is dead in the water.

Mary

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