Dogs may be man's best friend but cats are still the most popular pet in the United States.

Felines are elegant, affectionate companions that are ideal for people who lead busy lives. Cats are equally content living in an apartment or a house, and they even wash themselves. No wonder so many of us are enamored with these charming creatures.

The Newport Beach Public Library has recently acquired several excellent cat care guides. If a kitten or cat is in your future, or you just want to read up on current feline health care advice, take a look at these new releases:

"Cat Calls: Wonderful Stories and Practical Advice from a Veteran Cat Sitter" by Jeanne Adlon and Susan Logan: Legendary New York City cat sitter, Jeanne Adlon, and "Cat Fancy" editor, Susan Logan, share savvy cat care tips along with amusing anecdotes in this entertaining memoir. Topics range from what to feed a finicky feline to how to handle pesky behavior problems. Jim Davis, the creator of "Garfield," wrote the foreword.

"Complete Cat Care: What Every Cat Owner Needs to Know" by Bruce Fogle: Veterinarian Bruce Fogle teaches readers how to understand, nurture, and socialize their feline companions. The chapter on training provides step-by-step instructions on getting a cat to sit, come when called, walk on a harness, and use a scratching post. This book also gives detailed medical information, including a section on diagnosing and treating elderly cats.

"The Cat Selector: How to Choose the Right Cat for You" by David Alderton: Do you have your heart set on getting a purebred cat? Different breeds of felines vary widely in temperament, health, appearance, grooming requirements, and intelligence. Find your perfect cat with the help of this informative resource which profiles 120 breeds and even includes handy selector charts.

"The Complete Cat's Meow: Everything You Need to Know about Caring for Your Cat" by Darlene Arden: No matter how much or how little you may think you already know about cats, you're bound to learn something new in this comprehensive guide. Discover the latest research and recommendations for felines at every stage of life, from newborn kittens to geriatric cats. As an added bonus, there's a chapter on how to put together a kitty 'layette' before you bring your furry bundle of joy home.

"Cats Behaving Badly: Why Cats Do the Naughty Things They Do" by Celia Haddon: Has your cat suddenly stopped using its litter box? Or are you wondering how to introduce a new kitty to other household pets? Perhaps you need advice on what kind of food is best for your cat. Feline expert, Celia Haddon, shares her expertise and real-life solutions for these and other cat owner dilemmas.

"Learning to Care for a Cat" by Felicia Lowenstein Niven: Youngsters who are eager to acquire a cat or kitten will be captivated with this children's guide, which is a part of the "Beginning Pet Care with American Humane" series. In addition to basic cat care information, this visually appealing primer also offers tips on selecting a kitty and encourages kids to be responsible pet owners.

These are but a pawful of the recently published cat care books that await you at the Newport Beach Library.

CHECK IT OUT is written by the staff of the Newport Beach Public Library. All titles may be reserved from home or office computers by accessing the catalog at http://www.newportbeachlibrary.org. For more information on the Central Library or any of the branches, please contact the Newport Beach Public Library at (949) 717-3800, option 2.