To some people, cats seem naturally standoffish. Whereas dogs enjoy being part of a pack, cats are usually more independent. Therefore, it may seem as though a cat is avoiding you or does not enjoy your presence. There are several ways to go about handling a seemingly mean cat. You should attempt to do your best whether your new boyfriend or girlfriend has a cat you need to get along with or if your family adopted a cat and it seems to get along with everyone else besides you.
Play With the Cat
Schedule some time out of the day to play with the new feline. You should find a toy the cat likes, bearing in mind the personality of the kitty. For example, if the cat is older and lazier, then it may not enjoy a toy it has to chase around a room. Spending even just five minutes a day with play can help build a positive relation with the cat.
If you want to go a step further, schedule playtime to be the exact same time every day. To get the new family cat to like you, you could schedule playtime to be 6 p.m. every night after you get home from work. This will build a positive relationship because the cat will come to expect playtime at a specific hour, and it will correlate your presence with a great experience.
Feed the Cat
Feeding is another way you can build a positive connection with a new feline in your life. Again, you should aim to feed the cat at the same time every day so that it looks forward to interactions with you. These meals can be supplemented with occasional treats. You certainly do not want to spoil a cat by giving it tasty treats every single day, but once in a while can be good for forming a bond.
Spend Some Quiet Time With the Cat
Do not feel the need to constantly be looking for something to do with the cat. Sometimes the best thing you can do is hang out quietly in the same room. If the feline is in the living room, then feel free to go in there, sit down and read a good book. This is a way for the cat to become comfortable with your presence. The cat will soon realize that you do not pose any danger, so it can feel safe when you are around. This exercise is particularly beneficial for cats that are extremely jumpy.
Pet the Cat
When the cat seems to be calm, you can attempt to pet it. The best place is right behind the ears. Other good places include the base of its tail and the base of its chin. The one place you definitely do not want to pet a cat is the belly. While dogs may love belly rubs, cats are not going to be as receptive. The reason is that a cat’s belly is right over its most vital organs, so it may instinctually react aggressively.
In general, you want to be cognizant if the cat seems to not be enjoying any physical touch. Some of the signs that the cat is getting agitated include:
There is no point in trying to bond with a cat if it seems unresponsive. Simply try again at a time when the cat seems more relaxed.
Avoid Forced Interactions
Building off the last point, if the cat is hiding away somewhere, do not go searching for it. If a cat is ready to play, it will come out and find you. When a cat is under a bed or tucked away somewhere, it is a clear indicator that it just wants to be left alone for the time being. Trying to get a cat to play with you when it does not feel like it is a surefire way to make the cat associate you with negative feelings. Some cats are just naturally standoffish, so there will be no benefits in attempting to get it to interact with you.
Get at the Cat’s Height
When you try to get the cat to approach you, you want to stay several feet away. Always get a cat to approach you instead of vice versa. If the cat does not seem to want to come near you, then try to sit or squat down. Positioning yourself around the cat’s height will make you appear less threatening, so the cat may be more willing to get close to you.
Reciprocate Certain Actions
There are signs that a cat likes you. One of the most common is that a cat will bump its head against you, or it may rub its head around your leg. Cats do this to leave behind their scent, and it is a positive action. You can reciprocate the action by gently bumping your own head against the cat’s head.
Talk to the Cat
This may seem a tad crazy, but stick with it. Hearing the sound of a familiar voice can calm a cat down. Try to carry out a “conversation” with the feline. If the cat is meowing at you, then it could be a sign it wants to be fed. Continue this little chat by responding, “Do you want to eat?” The cat may meow at you again. It does not necessarily understand what you are saying, but it recognizes that you are aware of its needs.
Even if you follow all these tips, the cat may still seem to not like you at first. That is perfectly all right, so just give the little guy some time. Some cats take more time to warm up to people than others, so do not feel disheartened if you do not immediately become best friends with a new cat in your life.
Even if a cat does not belong to you, it is still nice knowing you can go over to a loved one’s place and get along with their feline. At the end of the day, you just need to remember to be nice.