Still home sick, so another picture in my living room was in store for me today. Cats really hate being surprised by bright lights, so I recommend shooting them without flash when possible. A high ISO tends to be necessary, unless your ambient lights are strong. Shooting with a shallow depth of field is also good, because it provides definition to whiskers and the edges of their fur. With a wide DOF, these details can easily blend into the rest of the background.
Objects on the other side of the lens may be further away than they appear, but you still might drop your camera in surprise when they spring right at your face. A high-contrast cat like Ansel here, is also a plus.
Canon 5D Mark II
105mm - ISO 3200