Cats are known for having the most personality among pets.
They can be aloof, affectionate, playful, and stubborn: you name it!
Having a cat in your household is surely an adventure.
However, there are times when cats are also very clingy and attention seeking, making you wonder why your cat is so needy.
There are many potential reasons for this kind of behaviour in cats. Continue reading to find out all about it and what you could do when you have this experience with your cat.
What are the reasons cats are needy?
There could be many reasons why your cat is so needy. Each of those reasons should be handled differently. Below we’ve compiled a list for you to help guide you in dealing with your kitty’s clingy behaviour.
- Your cat is new to the household: If your cat has recently been adopted, it may feel insecure and thus cling to you frequently for comfort. If you have another cat already in the house make sure that you introduce the cats to each other in a way which doesn’t cause problems. Also, if you’ve brought home a kitten which has been taken from its mother, it may see you as its mother and mistrust other members of the household.
- Your cat may be nervous or insecure: Your cat sees you as its provider and feels safe with you. If you have made recent changes in your home, no matter how small it may seem to you, this may make your cat feel nervous or insecure, making it seek familiar comfort from you.
- Your cat might have had a rough past: If you’ve adopted a cat from a shelter or pound, it may have been rescued from a household where it was abused. Cats from these situations tend to be very clingy, especially towards people who show them affection and care.
- Your cat may be displaying old habits: If you’ve taken in an adult cat, it may have been trained to be dependent and clingy by its previous owners.
- Your cat may be bored: If your cat has spent the whole day napping and lying around the house while you were at work, it may be ready to play and may want some exercise as well as have a desire to be shown affection as soon as you come home. However, this may seem like needy behaviour from your perspective.
- Your cat may be feeling sick: If your cat suddenly becomes super needy or clingy without any apparent reason, there may be an underlying medical issue to its abrupt change in behaviour.
How To Help A Needy Cat
Do you think one of the reasons mentioned above applies to your own cat? While there are numerous reasons for your cat to be needy or clingy, that doesn’t mean the situation is hopeless. There are ways to deal with these behaviours so your cat is happy and secure, making your life a lot easier! Keep on reading to know what to do when your cat is acting clingy.
- To start off, you can arrange your cat’s living environment so it’s as close to you as possible, like placing its basket or bed next to yours. This will increase its feeling of security. Once your cat feels like it has its own secure living space, it will be easier to modify its behaviour.
- Remember to be kind and patient with your cat. If you’d like to modify your pet’s behaviour, it will take a lot of time and patience to make it happen.
- Be consistent with how you react to your cat’s attention seeking behaviours. Reinforce actions which you’d like it to adapt by rewarding it with attention or treats. Try to ignore actions which are undesirable to you.
- Alternatively, you can offer your cat a distraction when it is being needy. For example, give your pet its favourite toy and then step out of the room to see what it does.
- An intelligent toy for cats
- Suitable for elderly or sick animals
- Trains the cat's skills
- When you decided to leave the house, do so discretely so as not to increase the levels of insecurity in your cat when you depart.
- While you’re around, encourage your cat to play with other members of your household so it learns to feel secure with other people.
- Expand your cat’s world by scheduling outdoor playtime to increase its confidence and improve its health. A cat which is exposed to different environments and experiences will learn to be more independent.
- If you’ve tried everything you can think of, but have come to suspect that your cat may not be feeling well, take it to your vet and have it checked out.
Knowing why your cat may be needy is very helpful, especially to first-time cat owners. Now you also know some strategies for dealing with a very clingy cat to help it become more confident and independent.
Whether you’re raising a kitten or nurturing an adult cat, most strategies will work as long as you do them with genuine love and concern. Keep in mind that owning a cat is a big responsibility and not just a hobby which you can set aside once you’ve grown tired of it. Patiently caring for your cat and employing the above methods will help you bring out the best in your cat. A happy and healthy cat will be much easier to care for, making it a wonderful addition to your home!