Best Books for Understanding Cat Behavior

After getting a cat, it is very important to take the time to understand its behavior as best as possible. A very good way to do this is to read cat behavior books. Here are 10 of the best cat behavior books that can set any cat owner off to a good start with their pet. These will help you figure out what drives your cat, how to behave around it, and, most importantly, what your cat needs.

10 Books for Cat Owners

With so many options out there, choosing a good book about cats can be quite a daunting task. We’re here to help you with that. They’re not listed in a particular order, this is not a top 10. Each of these books offers practical insights into cat behavior and reading them will benefit any cat parent out there.

General Cat Behavior Books

If you’re not looking for information about cats of a certain age, be it kittens or adults, or related to a specific issue, like getting two cats to coexist harmoniously, then what you’re looking for is a general book to help you understand your feline friend’s thoughts. This should include information about common behavior patterns that domestic cats have and some information about how to train them to improve their overall behavior (Remember that any cat is a trainable cat). Here are the ones you might be interested in from our list:

  • CatWise
  • How to Speak Cat
  • Total Cat Mojo
  • Naughty No More
  • The Cat Whisperer
  • Cat Behaviour Guide

Adult Cat Behavior Books

Most cat behavior books out there are written for new pet parents and they are about kittens, so if you’re not looking to read about how to deal with young cats and how to train them, then you should look for books that are specifically about adult cats, or at some general ones that cover what you need. Here are the most helpful books on our list if you’re interested in adult cat behavior:

  • How to Correct Behavior Problems in Your Adult Cat
  • Total Cat Mojo
  • Naughty No More
  • The Cat Whisperer
  • Cat Behaviour Guide
  • Behavior Book for Multi-Cat Environments

If you have more than one cat, then you need a specialized book to help you live peacefully in your multi-cat home. If you have one cat, but you’re thinking about getting a second one, then make sure to read a book about how to introduce the new cat because that initial moment will dictate the future of the relationship between your two cats. If you already have more than one cat, then these books will provide valuable info on how to train them in group and to improve the overall dynamics in your home. Here are the two books for you in our list:

  • Cat vs. Cat
  • ComPETability

CatWise: America’s Favorite Cat Expert Answers Your Cat Behavior Questions
by Pam Johnson-Bennett

CatWise Americas Favorite Cat Expert Answers Your Cat Behavior Questions
  • The book for getting cat behavior info on the go

Written by Pam Johnson-Bennett, founder and chair of the International Association of Animal Behavior Consultants’ Cat Division, and award-winning author of several cat behavior books, this is the top choice for busy people.

CatWise is a book for cat owners old and new. It can make new cat owners aware of the things that are about to come their way and it will make people who have had cats for years and years to decipher the most cryptic behavior patterns they’ve noticed in their feline companions.

What sets this book apart from many others is that it is written in a Q&A format, which makes it very easy to read. Even if you go through a couple of pages a day, you will find out everything about your cat in no time.

It deals with specific situations faced by every cat owner and it provides expert tips and tricks, as well as the behavioral explanation for the issue. Pam Johnson-Bennett’s book is bound to have something interesting for every cat owner out there.

Think Like a Cat: How to Raise a Well-Adjusted Cat–Not a Sour Puss
by Pam Johnson-Bennett

Think Like a Cat How to Raise a Well-Adjusted Cat--Not a Sour Puss
  • The book for new cat owners

This is another one of Pam Johnson-Bennett’s best-sellers. Think Like a Cat is aimed at new cat owners or even upcoming cat parents who want to know everything about taking care of a cat before they actually take the kitten home.

This book takes you through all the basics of cat care, from getting your kitten acquainted with the litter box and all the way to getting it to use scratching posts. Pet owners who take good care of their kittens and enforce the proper rules from an early age will raise properly-behaved animals.

In fact, Think Like a Cat can actually show you how to avoid raising a sourpuss by giving you a holistic approach to cat care. If you are looking to get a cat, then this book will have you ready in no time.

Starting from Scratch: How to Correct Behavior Problems in Your Adult Cat by Pam Johnson-Bennett

Starting from Scratch How to Correct Behavior Problems in Your Adult Ca
  • The book for cat owners who want to correct issues in their cats

It is never too late to improve your cat’s behavior and with this Pam Johnson-Bennett book, you can actually start from scratch and correct all those annoying behavior problems with your cat. It is the ideal cat behavior book for owners of adult cats and especially adopted cats because it provides tips and tricks that actually work in their situation.

Other cat books take a general approach on the matter, which makes certain methods inefficient for adult cats that are already set in their ways. This book, on the other hand, is aimed precisely at cats with a completely formed behavior that needs some changes.

Cat behavior expert Pam Johnson-Bennett was also the host of the hit TV show Psycho Kitty, where she has displayed her expert skills on dealing with particularly difficult feline characters. So, if you have issues with an adult cat, from broken things around your house to cat biting, then this book might give you the proper insight on the matter.

Cat vs. Cat: Keeping Peace When You Have More Than One Cat by Pam Johnson-Bennett

Cat vs Cat Keeping Peace When You Have More Than One Cat
  • The cat behavior book for owners of multiple cats

If you plan to bring a new cat into your home or if you have two cats that get along rather poorly, then this Pam Johnson-Bennett book will make your life much easier. One of America’s experts on cat behavior explains exactly what you have to do when you have to face a cat vs. cat battle.

One of the most important things explained by Pam Johnson-Bennett in this book is the proper way to introduce a new cat in the household. She provides a step by step guide for doing this, which will prevent the two cats from starting out on the wrong foot.

She also explains the basics of cat territory and feline dominant behavior so that owners can understand why their cats act the way they do. This will prove extremely useful both for diffusing tense situations and for preventing potential cat wars that may result in one of them leaving the house.

ComPETability: Solving Behavior Problems in Your Multi-Cat Household
by Amy Shojai

ComPETability Solving Behavior Problems in Your Multi-Cat Household
  • The cat behavior book that will end cat warsAmy Shojai is a well-accomplished feline behaviorist and her book, ComPETability, has won the Cat Writers Association Muse Medallion Award for the Best Cat Book of the Year back in 2013. This is a comprehensive resource that will prove extremely useful for cat owners who have or who are looking to get more than one cat.

ComPETability puts the issues that come up in a multi-cat household into the complete behavioral context. Cat owners will get a lot of background information about feline interaction so that they can smooth the process of the two cats building a relationship.

The central aim of the book is to teach cat owners how to recognize and reduce cat aggression of all intensities, to manage a proper plan for cat nutrition, to eliminate bullying behavior, and many other common problems.

It also features a pet peeves section, where Amy Shojai answers some of those all-time cat owner FAQs about feline phone attraction or the seemingly inexplicable fear of mirrors that cats have.

How to Speak Cat: A Guide to Decoding Cat Language by Aline Alexander Newman

How to Speak Cat: A Guide to Decoding Cat Language

Written by Aline Alexander Newman with veterinarian expert Dr. Gary Witzman as a guide, How to Speak Cat is a cat behavior book for everybody. Meant to introduce cat lovers and cat owners to the basics of cat behavior, this book translates the meaning of everything from tail flicks to purring.

What makes this book extremely useful is the fact that it features over 30 real-life scenarios, laid out with pictures and insightful explanations, which can turn anybody into a feline connoisseur over-night.

It also provides tips and tricks for owners that help them build a better relationship with their cats. Aline Alexander Newman’s book is bound to feature new and appealing information for any cat lover, but what sets it apart from other books is that it is an excellent choice for children as well. If you want to teach your children about cats and their behavior, then this is the book for you!

Total Cat Mojo: The Ultimate Guide to Life with Your Cat by Jackson Galaxy

Total Cat Mojo The Ultimate Guide to Life with Your Cat
  • The book for readers who want a holistic approach to cat behavior

Jackson Galaxy is the star of Animal Planet’s TV series “My Cat from Hell” and he is known as the Cat Whisperer. He is also one of the most renowned cat behavior specialists in America and his book is certainly one that any cat owner should read.

Mr. Galaxy explains the concept of Cat Mojo as the healthy behavior displayed by a cat that is happy and fulfilled in its environment. It acts on its instincts to hunt, catch, kill, eat, groom, and sleep, and in this book, you will understand how that is translated in cat behavior you already consider to be typical. This will help you see your cat more as a feline and less like a pet, which will expand the horizons of your relationship.

Then, Jackson Galaxy lays out the do’s and don’ts of cat care that lead to an environment that makes your cat display that Total Cat Mojo. This book is very easy to read and the tips and tricks in it are quite easy to put into practice. So, find out about your cat’s instinctive behavior from America’s Cat Whisperer!

Naughty No More: Change Unwanted Behaviors Through Positive Reinforcement by Marilyn Krieger

Naughty No More Change Unwanted Behaviors Through Positive Reinforcement
  • The cat book for cat owners who want to improve their cat’s behaviorMarilyn Krieger is a certified cat behavior consultant and the owner of The Cat Coach, LLC. She offers consultations for pet owners who want to improve their relationships with their cats, which has built her a longstanding experience in dealing with very diverse cat behavior issues.

In Naughty No More, Marilyn Krieger explains the reasons behind certain cat behavior patterns as well as the best ways to correct the faults that come with it. The book can help cat owners with common issues such as traumatic trips to the vet, bathroom problems, cat scratching, cats breaking things in the house, and many others.

The book features photos as visual support for understanding certain situations and very useful tips and tricks about how to correct bad behavior with positive reinforcement, such as using a cat clicker instead of traditional methods that could prove harmful to the cats.

The Cat Whisperer: Why Cats Do What They Do–and How to Get Them to Do What You Want by Mieshelle Nagelschneider

The Cat Whisperer: Why Cats Do What They Do--and How to Get Them to Do What You Want
  • The book for cat owners who want to take the C.A.T. out of their problemsWritten by America’s lady Cat Whisperer, Mieshelle Nagelschneider, who has over two decades of experience in dealing with cat behavior problems small and large, this book will answer any cat owner’s questions.

It features detailed information about the typical behavior of household cats, its origins in large feline behavior, and the explanation for certain patterns that may appear to be strange.

Then, Mieshelle Nagelschneider explains her method, the C.A.T. plan for building a better relationship between cat and owner based on harnessing “friendly pheromones” and using them to the max.

She goes through common issues faced by cat owners, such as litter box problems, cat vs. cat quarrels, spraying the house, breaking and tearing things around the house, and she explains the main steps to the C.A.T. plan to fix them.

Cat Behaviour Guide: How To Train A Cat, Stop Cat Problems For Good (Cat Training Secrets Book by Jade King

Cat Behaviour Guide How To Train A Cat, Stop Cat Problems For Good
  • The cat behavior book to help cat owners correct their cats’ problems

Unlike other books about correcting cat behavior issues, this one is written by a cat owner for other cat owners. Jade King has been a cat lover for years and she has faced some difficult situations with her cats, which almost made her give one of them away.

But instead of doing that, Jade King started learning about cat behavior and she has managed to solve the issues in just a few weeks by training their misconduct out. Now Mrs. King is sharing her experience with cat owners dealing with the same problems.

From proper litter box training to training a cat to stop biting and clawing, scratching furniture, or spray the house, Jade King’s book is the best beginner’s guide to understanding cat behavior and training out defective patterns.

These 10 cat behavior books can help cat owners build a steady foundation for their relationship with their pet. Putting an end to problems that you’ve had with your cat for years may be much closer than you think.

Best Books for Understanding Cat Behavior
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If you want to find out more, then here are some commonly asked questions about cat behavior and how cat owners use them to understand their pets better. 

The cat behavior specialists who have written these books can explain why your cats are acting they are, as well as the best way for you to make them act the way you want. These books will help you expand your understanding of typical cat behavior, which will strengthen the relationship you have with your cat.

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Hi, I’m Jenny Dean, creator of Floppycats! Ever since my Aunt got the first Ragdoll cat in our family, I have loved the breed. Inspired by my childhood Ragdoll cat, Rags, I created Floppycats to connect, share and inspire other Ragdoll cat lovers around the world,

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  1. WOW! SUPER PAWESOME & FABULOUS book recommendations, Jenny!!! TYSVM for compiling all this great info to share with us! Going to put a few of these on my Wish List as I am truly fascinated by any animal behavior (but especially kitteh & doggy behaviors)! Wonderful compilation!! 🙂 <3

    Big hugs & lots of love!!!

    Patti & Miss Pink Sugarbelle 🙂 <3 <3 <3

    P.S. What great gifts these would make for any cat lover! 🙂 <3

    1. a reader once told me about “starting from scratch” – totally helped her with your rehomed ragdoll.

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