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How To Get A Cat To Like You

March 15, 2024

Are you planning to adopt a kitty soon? Has a cute furball just come into your life? Congratulations! If we know one thing about cats, it’s that they are all unique. Some kitties are friendly and outgoing, some are calm and laid back, some are shy, and others are, well, rather grumpy. If you’ve just adopted a new kitty, and Fluffy falls into that first category, you may make friends with her pretty quickly. However, some of our feline pals take time to warm up to their humans. How do you win Fluffy’s heart? A local Louisville, KY vet offers some advice on this below.

How Do You Get A Cat To Trust You?

This really starts with good TLC. Offer your pet good food, fresh water, and proper veterinary care, and keep her litterbox clean.

Stability can help a lot here. Cats tend to feel safer when they are on a steady schedule. We would recommend sticking to a set routine as much as possible, especially as your cat is settling in. Feed and play with Fluffy at the same time every day. (Your kitty will sort out her 32 naps and 14 meditation sessions on her own.)

It’s also important to avoid scaring your kitty. Cats are both predators and prey in the wild, which makes for a unique and curious mix of traits. As a prey animal, Fluffy will naturally be a bit wary of things that could present a hazard. (Some cats are completely oblivious to danger, but that’s another topic.) Try not to make loud noises, as these can startle or scare your pet.

Kitties also sometimes just need a place to retreat to. Make sure your pet has her own space. If you have more than one cat, provide separate litter boxes and feeding stations. Also, make sure your cats don’t need to compete for attention, toys, lap space, or, well, anything else.

Another thing that will help is taking time to make your home as inviting and cozy for your kitty as possible. Set out lots of comfy napping spots, and provide your furball with plenty of toys to bat under the couch.

Speaking of toys, taking time to play with Fluffy will also score you some purrs. Start using a toy that you can control, such as a wand toy or laser pointer.

How Do You Bond With A Cat?

Making Fluffy feel safe is important, but to really bond with your pet will take a bit more. Trust is crucial here.

Talking to your cat can go a long way. It doesn’t matter what you’re saying: just be sure to use a gentle, friendly tone. Many kitties do seem to respond to baby talk, but you don’t have to do that. Fluffy may not understand you, but she’ll know you’re communicating. (Bonus: cats make great listeners.) Watch your pet to see if she responds. She may twitch her ears, flick her tail, or even meow back!

Speaking of meowing, if your kitty is vocal, you can try the mirror game. When Fluffy meows, try to imitate her. This can be a fun game to play with your pet.

According to a local Louisville, KY vet, you also want your feline pal to form ‘pawsitive’ associations with you. Pick up a treat, and hold it out to your pet. Call Fluffy, or make that ‘psst’ noise,  and wait for your cat to come to you. If she approaches, give her the treat: no strings attached. After a few times, hold out your hand for her to sniff. If she seems relaxed, pet her head and neck. Don’t force things: If your pet seems wary, just let her be. You’ll win her trust more quickly if you let her decide when cuddle time starts and stops.

How Long Does It Take To Get A Cat To Like You?

This will vary, based on Fluffy’s history and temperament. Every cat is a bit different. Some will take longer to warm up to a new owner than others will. 

Your pet’s age will also come into play here. Kittens tend to warm up very quickly: they often think of their humans as second parents. Baby cats want to feel safe and loved, and often really enjoy being held and cuddled.

Rescue cats also sometimes decide that their saviors are the best humans ever. Many rescues are extremely affectionate and grateful to those who helped them. However, sometimes they are frightened or wary, and will need more time.  

How Can I Tell If My Cat Is Bonding With Me?

Cats can be a bit mysterious. In some cases, it will be very obvious. If Fluffy curls up on your lap, comes when you call her, sleeps with you in bed, and follows you around, your feline pal has probably decided that you’re pretty pawesome. 

That said, not all cats are cuddly. Some are more aloof, and would just rather quietly hang out with you. Even if Fluffy doesn’t want to get on your lap, if she seems to enjoy spending time with you, a Louisville, KY vet says it’s a good sign.

You can also watch your pet’s body language. Relaxed and happy cats may stretch out in the middle of the floor to nap, which is a good indication that they feel safe. Fluffy may blink slowly, which is actually a sign of kitty affection. If your pet rubs against your legs or bonks you with her forehead, you’re on the right track. If she starts following you around, she’s become fond of you.

It’s also important to watch for signs of tension.

These include:

  • Sitting in a hunched, ‘loaf’ position
  • Flattening the ears
  • Lashing The Tail
  • Hissing
  • Hiding
  • Running Away
  • Not Wanting To Be Held

Keep in mind that it’s normal for cats to be uneasy in a new home. Fluffy may just want to hide for a few days as she settles in. That’s fine! Give her the space she needs. 

Why Is My Cat Sometimes Affectionate And Sometimes Not?

It’s important to realize that cats can be tricky. Fluffy is the only one of our animal friends who bites and scratches us affectionately. She may also want to snuggle one minute and then scratch you the next. However, that’s just purr for the course with these little furballs. Fluffy can be a bit temperamental. She also sometimes switches gears quickly and can go from Cuddle to Play to Attack modes at light speed.

Getting to know your pet, and giving her space when she needs it, will help you better gauge your furry little friend’s moods and cattitude. 

That said, sometimes sudden moodiness is an indication that something is wrong.  If your kitty is usually friendly, but suddenly is acting like a grump, it could be a sign of illness. Contact your Louisville, KY veterinary clinic.

What Do Cats Like?

It definitely won’t hurt to provide your feline overlord with her favorite things. A full catnip garden and a stocked moat may be going a bit overboard, but there are plenty of less extravagant options that will get that motor going. 

These include:

  • Catnip
  • Toys
  • Beds
  • Boxes
  • Sunbeams
  • Window Seats
  • Catios
  • Cat Towers
  • Warm napping spots
  • Scratching posts
  • Treats

Some kitties like being brushed, though this isn’t universal. Most of all, just make sure your pet is comfortable, safe, entertained, and healthy. Even if Fluffy isn’t very affectionate, that still assures her a good quality of life.

Do you have questions about your cat’s health or care? Contact us, Evergreen Animal Hospital out of Louisville, KY, anytime. We are always here to help!