The Best Books About Cats for Curious Owners: Available Today

Written by Maxwell Martinson
Updated: March 30, 2023
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Key Points

  • There are many different books about cats — including breed guides, training tips, behavioral guides, and historical insights.
  • You should consider what you want to get from a book about cats and where your interest lies before purchasing.
  • We’ve reviewed a broad range of books to help you choose the perfect one.

How much do you know about your cats? Do you really know what their ‘meow’ means, why they’re making biscuits on your shirt, or why they can’t stop laying on top of your keyboard while you work? Further, where do cats come from? Why are there so many different breeds, and do they occur naturally in the wild?

These are all things we tend to gloss over with cats. They’ve no doubt entered into competition with dogs for the “Man’s Best Friend” title, but what do we actually know about these furry little fluffballs?

The following books should give you some answers. We’ve compiled our top picks for owners to peruse in an effort to gain a deeper understanding of their cats.

  1. Understanding Cat Behavior: A Compassionate Guide to Training and Communication
    • Covers all of the bases of cat ownership
    • Teaches you precisely how to care for your cat in the most compassionate way
    • Invaluable tool for cat owners, beginners, and experts alike
    Check Amazon
  2. The Complete Cat Breed Book, Second Edition
    • Uncover the full spectrum of cats going back centuries
    • Good resource for how to raise your cat
    • Perfect book for your coffee table
    Check Amazon
  3. The Complete Guide to Adopting a Cat: Preparing for, Selecting, Raising, Training, and Loving Your New Adopted Cat or Kitten
    • Learn to choose the right cat for your home
    • Helps guide you through the adoption process
    • Contains useful tips on playing with your cat
    Check Amazon
  4. The Cat Encyclopedia: The Definitive Visual Guide
    • Covers everything from breeds to behavior to health issues
    • Gives you visual depictions of each subject, to help your understanding
    • Beautiful coffee table book
    Check Amazon
  5. Let's Talk About Cats: Conversations On Feline Behaviour
    • Professional suggestions on cat ownership
    • Covers the current state of research surrounding cat behavior
    • A real page-turner
    Check Amazon
  6. The Way of Cats
    • Gives you essential information on playing with and relating to your cat
    • Great resource for fixing behavioral issues
    • Full of tips and tricks
    Check Amazon
  7. How to Speak Cat: A Guide to Decoding Cat Language
    • Gives you a well-rounded understanding of cat body language
    • Filled with engaging photos
    • Intended for younger readers but those of all ages will enjoy
    Check Amazon
  8. The Little Book of Lore for Cat Lovers: A Complete Curiosity of Feline Facts, Myths, and History
    • Learn cat-related historical facts
    • Stuffed with anecdotes and interesting trivia
    • Great way to pass a few minutes of free time
    Check Amazon

A-Z Animals Top Picks for Books About Cats

1. Understanding Cat Behavior: A Compassionate Guide to Training and Communication by Beth Pasek

This book covers all of the basics of cat ownership and managing your cat throughout its life cycle. It teaches you precisely how to care for your cat in the most compassionate way, and it serves as a reference to pick up and utilize whenever you need it. It also includes many training tips and techniques too.

It’s an invaluable tool for cat owners, whether you’re an expert or just rescuing your first cat. This is a paperback book that spans 144 pages, filled with helpful images that detail the strategies and tips included in the text. However, reviewers have reported that it is best suited to people who are just starting out on their cat ownership journey, rather than those who already have cats.

Pros and Cons of Understanding Cat Behavior: A Compassionate Guide to Training and Communication by Beth Pasek

ProsCons
This book covers all of the basics of cat ownership.It is better suited to people just beginning their cat ownership journey rather than existing cat owners.
It teaches you how to care for your cat in a compassionate way.
It contains helpful images.
It contains training tips and techniques.
Understanding Cat Behavior: A Compassionate Guide to Training and Communication
  • Covers all of the bases of cat ownership
  • Teaches you precisely how to care for your cat in the most compassionate way
  • Invaluable tool for cat owners, beginners, and experts alike
Check Amazon

2. The Complete Cat Breed Book (Second Edition) by DK Publishing

The Complete Cat Breed Book is a great way to uncover the full spectrum of cats going back centuries. It looks at the journey that domesticated cats have taken through history, digging into the details of the feline friends that journey has produced.

If you’re unsure what breed your cat is or where they might have come from, this is the perfect book for your coffee table. This book identifies many different breeds and allows you to learn specific details about cat breed nutrition, exercise requirements, breed history, and more. This is the guide for anyone who wants to raise their cat in the healthiest and most nurturing way.

The Complete Cat Breed Book is 256 pages long, and comes in paperback unless you want to download the more affordable Kindle version. Consider using it as a reference when looking for your perfect cat breed.

Pros and Cons of The Complete Cat Breed Book (Second Edition) by DK Publishing

ProsCons
This book explains the journey of domesticated cats through history.None
It identifies numerous cat breeds.
It offers tips on different breed nutrition and exercise requirements.
There are paperback and Kindle editions available.
The Complete Cat Breed Book, Second Edition
  • Uncover the full spectrum of cats going back centuries
  • Good resource for how to raise your cat
  • Perfect book for your coffee table
Check Amazon

3. The Complete Guide to Adopting a Cat: Preparing for, Selecting, Raising, Training, and Loving Your New Adopted Cat or Kitten by Laura Cassiday

The Complete Guide to Adopting a Cat is for anyone who has never been responsible for a cat but wants to adopt one. There are myths that cats don’t require any maintenance or that they’re “extremely easy” to take care of, but that’s not always true. Cats are complex, and they require similar loving care to dogs.

Understanding, training, raising, and caring for a kitty is a special process, but you need to know what you’re doing. This guide will give you confidence moving forward with the adoption process. This book features interviews with more than 40 rescue shelter experts and covers every topic you could possibly need to know about when it comes to caring for your kitty — including nutrition, grooming, exercise, and even troubleshooting of common problems. Learn to choose the right cat for your home, select the best equipment for your new cat, understand the nutrition that cats need, and much more. You’ll even get some tips on how to play with your cat!

This text comes in at 171 pages, was written by a certified cat behavior consultant, and comes in Kindle, Audiobook, and paperback versions.

Pros and Cons of The Complete Guide to Adopting a Cat: Preparing for, Selecting, Raising, Training, and Loving Your New Adopted Cat or Kitten by Laura Cassiday

ProsCons
This book features interviews with more than 40 experts.None
It features every topic you could need to know about caring for your new cat — including nutrition, grooming, exercise, and even troubleshooting of common problems.
It is written by a certified cat behavior expert.
There are Kindle, audiobook, and paperback editions available.
The Complete Guide to Adopting a Cat: Preparing for, Selecting, Raising, Training, and Loving Your New Adopted Cat or Kitten
  • Learn to choose the right cat for your home
  • Helps guide you through the adoption process
  • Contains useful tips on playing with your cat
Check Amazon

4. The Cat Encyclopedia: The Definitive Visual Guide by DK

The Cat Encyclopedia provides a comprehensive look at feline breeds, health, behavior, and more. Not only that, but it gives you plenty of photographs of each subject. Many cat guides or books are lacking in the visual department, so it’s nice to see the specifics of what’s being mentioned, particularly when it comes to tips and tricks for cat ownership.

The encyclopedia takes a deep dive through history as well. Learn about the curious tidbits you’d never otherwise hear, ranging all the way back to the domesticated cats origins as African Wildcats.

This hardcover book offers cat ownership tips, explores felines in human art and culture, details cat physiology, and provides interesting facts for you to marvel at. It’s 320 pages long and covers just about everything you’d want to know. It’s also available in Kindle and hardcover editions.

Unfortunately, some reviewers reported that this book offers more information on the different breeds rather than health or behavior.

Pros and Cons of The Cat Encyclopedia: The Definitive Visual Guide by DK

ProsCons
This book provides a comprehensive look at feline breeds, health and behavior.It offers more information on cat breeds that health and behavior.
It features plenty of photographs on each subject.
It explores the origins of the domesticated cat.
There are Kindle and hardcover editions available.
The Cat Encyclopedia: The Definitive Visual Guide
  • Covers everything from breeds to behavior to health issues
  • Gives you visual depictions of each subject, to help your understanding
  • Beautiful coffee table book
Check Amazon

5. Let’s Talk About Cats: Conversations on Feline Behaviour by Anita Kelsey

Let’s Talk About Cats takes a unique approach to discussions about cats. In this book the author has conversations with 16 feline experts, discussing different aspects of feline behavior. These discussions cover a lot of ground and give the reader actionable tips they can use to improve the lives of their cats. It’s a real page-turner if you’re home on a rainy afternoon with your cat.

In this book you’ll get professional suggestions on cat ownership. You’ll also be exposed to some of the modern research on cats and feline behavior. The book is sure to give you a few takeaways that you can incorporate into your daily routine with your cat.

This is a paperback book coming in at around 314 pages, so it’s certainly a decent read. The fact that it includes a conversational style makes it even more unique to most of the feline books on the market.

Pros and Cons of Let’s Talk About Cats: Conversations on Feline Behaviour by Anita Kelsey

ProsCons
This book features conversations with 16 feline experts.None
It discusses different aspects of feline behavior.
It is written in a unique conversational style.
This book offers professional suggestions on cat ownership.
Let's Talk About Cats: Conversations On Feline Behaviour
  • Professional suggestions on cat ownership
  • Covers the current state of research surrounding cat behavior
  • A real page-turner
Check Amazon

6. The Way of Cats by Pamela Merritt

The Way of Cats is an exploration of cat training games and methods for improving your relationship with your cat. Rather than discussing the history and biology of housecats, this text gives you directions on engaging with your cat in real-time.

If you’ve ever had trouble training your cat or getting a handle on their behavior, you’ll certainly benefit from a book that delivers only the essentials on speaking to, playing with, training, and feeding cats.

Do yourself (and your cat) a favor and start utilizing these tips and tricks. This is a paperback book with a healthy 297 pages and is available in Kindle and paperback editions. It’s worth noting that this book also stands out as a resource on fixing behavioral issues with detailed strategies. However, there are no references to back up the author’s claims.

Pros and Cons of The Way of Cats by Pamela Merritt

ProsCons
This book explores cat training games and methods for improving your relationship with your cat.There are no references to back up the author’s claims.
It gives directions for speaking to, playing with, training, and feeding your cat.
It offers detailed strategies on how to fix behavioral issues.
There are Kindle and paperback editions available.
The Way of Cats
  • Gives you essential information on playing with and relating to your cat
  • Great resource for fixing behavioral issues
  • Full of tips and tricks
Check Amazon

7. How to Speak Cat: A Guide to Decoding Cat Language by Aline Alexander Newman and Gary Weitzman

This book was intended for young readers, but it’s so well done that it allows adults to learn a lot about cats as well. How to Speak Cat offers the fundamentals of cat behavior and gives you the tools to understand what your cat is trying to tell you through their body language and vocal communication. So, you’ll gain a well-rounded understanding of cat behavior and how to respond to it most effectively.

You can get this book in paperback or library binding, and it’s 176 pages long. You’ll find useful photos alongside simple strategies for understanding cats and their behavior. You might even use this book with everyone in the family to learn about your new furry friend.

Unfortunately, some customers reported that it could do with being more in depth in some chapters, while others believe it is better for first time cat owners than people who already have cats.

Pros and Cons of How to Speak Cat: A Guide to Decoding Cat Language by Aline Alexander Newman and Gary Weitzman

ProsCons
This book provides an insight into the fundamentals of cat behavior.Customers reported that it could do with being more in depth in some chapters.
It gives you the tools to understand what your cat is trying to tell you through their body language and vocal communication.Customers believe it is better for first time cat owners than those who already have cats.
It features useful photos.
How to Speak Cat: A Guide to Decoding Cat Language
  • Gives you a well-rounded understanding of cat body language
  • Filled with engaging photos
  • Intended for younger readers but those of all ages will enjoy
Check Amazon

8. The Little Book of Lore for Cat Lovers: A Complete Curiosity of Feline Facts, Myths, and History by Deborah Robertson

The Little Book of Lore for Cat Lovers is stuffed with anecdotes and interesting facts that you’ll be able to tell your friends for decades to come. Cat insights are always intriguing, and you’ll have to run through this book a few times before you fully appreciate them all. Find out how cats have weaved in and out of human mythology, culture, and folklore for centuries.

You’ll also learn about historical facts involving cats and what they’ve meant for the development of various cultures. It’s the perfect book to have lying around the house for whenever you’ve got a few minutes to spare.

This is a hardcover book landing at 144 pages. Note that this text gets very specific with its knowledge and deals more with trivia than ownership tips.

Pros and Cons of The Little Book of Lore for Cat Lovers: A Complete Curiosity of Feline Facts, Myths, and History by Deborah Robertson

ProsCons
This book is full of interesting facts about cats.It focuses more on trivia than ownership tips.
It explores how cats have been involved with human mythology, culture, and folklore.
It features historical facts about cats.
The Little Book of Lore for Cat Lovers: A Complete Curiosity of Feline Facts, Myths, and History
  • Learn cat-related historical facts
  • Stuffed with anecdotes and interesting trivia
  • Great way to pass a few minutes of free time
Check Amazon

Which Cat Book Is Right for You?

There’s probably a specific reason that you’re looking for a book on cats. Odds are that your cat is doing something strange, you’re considering purchasing a new cat, or you’re just curious to learn more about these furry creatures that make their way into our hearts.

There are books to address each of those questions and points of interest. In most cases, our top book Understanding Cat Behavior will be able to answer those questions.

A solid understanding of cat behavior pairs well with little bits of knowledge from books like The Little Book of Lore for Cat Lovers.

About the Author

Hi! I'm Max and I'm a writer from Minneapolis, Minnesota. I've been freelancing for more than five years and love the freedom and variety that this profession offers. Animals are also a big part of my life, and a lot of my time is dedicated to playing with my cat, Herbie.

The Best Books About Cats for Curious Owners: Available Today FAQs (Frequently Asked Questions) 

Why are cats such good companion animals?

Cats are wonderful for many reasons. For one, their ability to purr, rub, and comfort humans make them extremely therapeutic.

Individuals often take cats in as aids in anxiety relief or to curb loneliness, and those cats tend to do a great job. There are plenty of reasons to love and cherish cats, and many people are fortunate enough to experience mental health benefits when they do.

Do cats love their owners?

Cats form attachment bonds with their human owners, just like the ones that dogs form with us. The same is true for human babies, and this establishes the foundation of our sense of safety and connection.

In other words, our attachments are the bedrock of our love for our families and, some would argue, the way we interact with others in our lives.

So, cats do love their human owners! Some cats show this more clearly than others, however.

Should you read to your cat?

Reading to your cat is a great thing to do. Not only is it healthy to chatter with your feline, but doing so actually lets them know that they’re part of your intimate circle.

Remember cats live with you, and your behavior is what they base theirs off of. So, if you only talk to your friends and family but never your feline, they’ll feel as though they’re not an integral part of the group.

Reading is a perfect way to get that talking time in and strengthen your bond.

Thank you for reading! Have some feedback for us? Contact the AZ Animals editorial team.