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Cat stress poorly understood by owners
cat being cuddled
Research finds owners struggle to identify and deal with cat stress.
More than half of owners cuddle their stressed cat, research finds

Causes of feline stress are poorly understood by the UK's cat owners, according to new research by Cats Protection.

A survey of 1,300 owners found more than half (53 per cent) would deal with their cat's stress by giving it a cuddle.

The findings come ahead of a BBC Two Horizon documentary, in which Cats Protection took part. Titled Cat Watch 2014: The New Horizon Experiment, the series tracks the lifestyles of 100 cats. It is due to begin on Tuesday, October 7.

Other key findings were:
  • More than half (55 per cent) of owners were unaware that living with another cat or dog could be stressful for their cat.
  • Over a third (35 per cent) allowed neighbouring cats into the house, through a door, window or their cat's own cat flap. Half of the owners did not realise that other cats entering the home could be a source of stress.
  • More than half (51 per cent) did not realise soiling or wetting in the house is a sign of stress.
  • Just a quarter of respondents knew that excessive grooming of a particular area indicates stress.

The charity's behaviour manager Nicky Trevorrow said: "Being held or stroked for too long can be very stressful for some cats. Space and peace is often what they need - they’re not small furry humans so what would comfort us won’t necessarily comfort them.

"Owners love their animals and want them to be happy,” said Nicky.  “But our research has highlighted a lack of understanding of stress triggers for cats and how to deal with them."

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Laura Muir wins gold at Commonwealth Games

News Story 1
 Veterinary surgeon and Olympic silver-medalist Laura Muir scooped the gold medal in the 1500m final Commonwealth Games on Sunday.

Winning Scotland's 12th title of the games, Muir finished in four minutes 2.75 seconds, collecting her second medal in 24 hours.

Dr Muir commented on her win: "I just thought my strength is in my kick and I just tried to trust it and hope nobody would catch me. I ran as hard as I could to the line.

"It is so nice to come here and not just get one medal but two and in such a competitive field. Those girls are fast. It means a lot." 

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News Shorts
Views sought on NOAH Compendium

Users of the National Office of Animal Health (NOAH) Compendium app and website are being asked to share their views on how it can be improved.

In a new survey, users are asked about some suggested future developments, such as notifications for new and updated datasheets, sharing links to datasheets, and enhanced search functionality.

It comes after NOAH ceased publication of the NOAH Compendium book as part of its sustainability and environmental commitments. The website and the app will now be the main routes to access datasheets and view any changes.