Thursday, March 26, 2015

Review & Giveaway: Cat Skills

Did we mention that it's book giveaway month here at A Tonk's Tail?

This week, we're featuring another must-have: Cat Skills, by Leslie Goodwin.

I found myself nodding in agreement as I turned page after page.

Even though the title is "Cat Skills," it's really more about the skills we humans can learn to make our relationships with our pets stronger, and to ensure they live long and healthy lives.

Leslie told me her dream would be to get this book into the hands of each new adopter at every shelter, world-wide. Believe me, that would be a good idea!

Author, Leslie Goodwin

Leslie covers everything from the basics to topics even seasoned cat lovers might learn a thing or two about.

For example, I know (because I've been involved in discussions with fellow cat lovers) many people wonder about that particular wail a cat will use when carrying a special toy through the house.

Leslie's take on it?

“When a pregnant barn cat strayed into my life, she taught me how to raise cat kids. Mom cat, Lucy, was the benevolent dictator of her six kittens. When she carried them, they went limp. When she chirped, they followed. When she howled to announce she had prey, they came running.”

Howling to announce prey. Makes sense to me!

Allie wails while carrying her special mouse upstairs to Marty. Daily. Does your cat do this?

In our home, evidently Allie feels I don't feed Marty enough - she's constantly trying to feed him!

After reading Dr. Bilski's book on street cats, I can tell you these two authors agree on something else you might not be aware of:

Leslie writes: “A pet cat can stay forever a kitten because we meet his needs. He doesn’t have to fend for himself. He can bond to us as he bonded to Mom."

From both Goodwin and Bilski's observations of street and barn cats, mom-cat instills the life skills into her kittens that they need to survive out in that big and dangerous world. If mom-cat's not around, we humans are the substitute.

Faraday falls clearly into this category. He was weaned early, with no mom in sight. Faraday's almost 5 and he's never grown out of his kittenhood. (I don't mind in the least!)

Definitely the baby of the fambly.

The book is written in an approachable way, and has moments of levity. Just wait’ll you read her theory about cats vs. dogs. It’s hysterical (and true!).

Some of the topics she covers include:
  • How to make a love bond
  • Toxins
  • How to handle & pet a cat 
  • The importance of dental health
  • Diet: cats are obligate carnivores
We highly recommend Cat Skills. It's on our must-read list.

Win a copy of your own!

Leslie has graciously offered one lucky reader a copy of Cat Skills. If the winner drawn by Rafflecopter resides in the U.S., you have your choice of a paperback copy or a Kindle ebook. If the chosen winner is outside the U.S., you win the ebook! (seriously, shipping outside the U.S. is a crime these days....)

a Rafflecopter giveaway

If you don't want to wait, you can use coupon code HAQZ7A3Z to get $1 off the purchase price when you buy directly from the publisher at CreateSpace!


  1. God luck to all with the give away. Have a tremendous Thursday.
    Best wishes Molly

  2. I've read this book and agree that it is absolutely wonderful.

  3. Leslie is awesome! I had the opportunity to meet her at the book signing, and she is so bubbly and energetic. I wish I'd had the chance to chat with her more, but there were so many people there (and I don't do the best in big crowds).

    Her book offers some great practical advice for all cat owners!

  4. Wow that is fascinating about how a indoor cat can stay forever a kitten because we provide for them what their Mother Cat would have. I have long felt that bond with my girls especially. I know I fulfill that need in Annabelle now. She is very dependent. I would absolutely love to read this!

  5. Have entered for the e-copy :) Sounds like an excellent book :)

  6. That sounds like a really cool book. We know all about howling to announce prey. Especially at 3am. That's the best time.

  7. This sounds like a good book. The mom needs to read it.

  8. Looks intriguing - and I've wondered about that toy/howling thing lately too.

  9. This sounds like a great book! Thanks for the chance to win it. :)

  10. This sounds fun, * scribbles down a note * Let's hope she doesn't giver away ALL of our trade sekrits!!


  11. Sounds like an Pawsome book! Concats to who ever wins it! We entered twice... but we don't tweet much... so just did the Facebook stuffs... -Katie Kat.


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