How To Properly Hold A Cat

Every animal lover thinks they’re an expert. But the truth is, even the most basic parts of caring for a pet can be widely misunderstood, making daily life more stressful for everyone involved.

Thankfully, The Cattery, a Texas-based cat shelter, has made it their mission to give cat owners helpful tips that make caring for your kitten a breeze.

Their latest pair of TikTok videos tackles the simple-seeming but technical topic of how to properly hold your cat.

Photo: Unsplash/Manki Kim

First up, some much-needed definitions. Got your pencil ready? Scott Person, who narrates and demonstrates in both videos, introduces viewers to “squiggly” cats.

“‘Squiggly’ is a technical term,” he whispers to the camera jokingly. When a cat is held improperly, their back legs dangle and they become uneasy in a person’s arms. This is a “squiggly” cat, and a squiggly cat is a stressed cat. To avoid squigglies, Person advises that “when holding a cat, you always want to support their butt.”


“The key to carrying a cat,” he continues, “is to make sure the cat is comfortable and well supported, so their body isn’t dangling. That’s when they get all squiggly.” This leaves you with a few options when cradling your kitty.

First up is to hold them like a baby, making sure their backside is tucked into the crook of your elbow. Second, you can also try the “football hold,” which is exactly what it sounds like — just make sure your touchdown dance isn’t too jumpy.


Last up, this technique also extends to another often-stressful part of cat care: the dreaded nail clip. According to Person, it can “help reduce the stress and anxiety” of nail clipping time if two people are involved.

One holds the cat like a baby that is being burped over their shoulder, and the other grabs the cat’s paws and gently clips. This method leaves the cat supported and cradled, which makes everything “easier for both humans and kitties.”


So, the next time your cat wants up, remember to support the butt, and avoid the squigglies!

Informational TikToks are just part of The Cattery’s mission. They are also a cage-free shelter that shares photos on Instagram and special exclusives for their Patrons.

Check them out for more, or watch the full videos below!


No squigglies allowed. #cats #learnontiktok #sheltercats #wholesome #kitties

♬ Eternal – Danilo Stankovic


2 person nail cutting! #catnails #catnailsallon #catspaw #cuttingnails #learnontiktok #catsoftiktok2021

♬ Eternal – Danilo Stankovic

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