THE RSPCA revealed there were 16,942 calls coming through to its cruelty line from the North West of England last year with concerns for the welfare of cats, which is almost one call every 30 minutes.

Annually, August shines a light on the plight of cats with International Cat Day, which was on August 8.

It’s sad to see we have received so many calls about cats in need.

Cats end up needing our help for a variety of reasons, for example their natural curiosity can mean they need rescuing when they get into scrapes and tricky situations.

There are real issues we see time and again including cats and kittens being abandoned, and cats having unplanned and unwanted pregnancies due to a lack of neutering and multi-cat households, where breeding has sadly become out of control.

There are many cats who are much luckier and are a part of the family and loved by their owners who understand their likes and dislikes, their little quirks and routines.

Every cat is an individual, but there are signs we can look out for to see how our cats are feeling through understanding their body language and behaviour to ensure they are happy and healthy.

Tips for understanding cat behaviour include spotting these animals hide away, which shows feelings of anxiousness or fearfulness.

Always ensure your cat has lots of cosy hiding places around the house.

A cat who is feeling friendly and happy to meet you will approach with their tail held upright with the tip of the tail curved.

Most cats prefer to initiate any interaction so give them time to come to you.

Rolling over onto their back and showing their tummy can be a sign your cat feels comfortable and safe around you, however, most cats do not enjoy a belly rub and may react defensively.

Instead, you may like to give them a gentle stroke on their head or cheeks.