You are calmly petting your cat when all of a sudden there’s this sharp pain -your “loving” cat has just sunk its teeth and claws into your hand. But why would your cat bite you? Does your cat hate you?
The answer is no, your cat does not hate you. In fact, it can be quite the opposite! The biting that your feline friend is partaking in is commonly called “love biting”. Your cat is actually attempting to communicate with you, they are trying to tell you something with a cat bite. But what?
It’s not that simple. It could be one of these things:
Why Does My Cat Bite Me?
- Love biting can be playful, particularly with kittens. If your cat doesn’t have another feline playmate, they may play roughly with you. This can result in playful “love bites”.
- Your cat may use biting to assert dominance and respond to threats. In the home, your cat may be biting you because they are showing you who is in charge.
- Cats love affection, but not too much. Try not to smother your cat. At times your cat may feel irritated by being petted. In this situation the cat may nip or lightly bite the person petting him. They will then jump up and run off.
- Although this type of aggression isn’t well understood, behaviorists think that physical contact, like stroking, can quickly become unpleasant if it’s repeated over and over.
- If your cat is mad (maybe because of an animal or person they can’t get at), they will redirect their aggression. If they cannot get to the trigger of their agitation, they will lash out at someone (person, dog or cat) who is nearby and that might be you.
- Biting may be due to health issues. If your cat isn’t normally aggressive, then an attack may be a sign that they’re in pain and need to be taken to a vet.
How Do I Stop My Cat From Biting Me?
- Avoid eye-contact with your cat if they are in an ‘aggressive’ state. Staring at your cat increases feelings of aggression and can provoke a biting attack. Alternatively, looking away from your cat calms them and prevents potential biting.
- Slowly blink at your cat, especially if your cat is nervous. This relaxes your gaze and tells your cat that you are non-confrontational.
- Do not punish your cat. This will make the situation worse.
- Play with your cat – play stimulates a cats brain, it makes them feel good and it relaxes them. Some great toys to use to play with your cat are laser lights, feathers, and toy mice:
- Spend time with your cat – let them sit on your lap, pet them and spend time playing with them.
- Control the situation:If your cat demonstrates signs of aggression whilst you are together, it’s important that you end the play time. Over time, you should be able to end your sessions before your cat becomes aggressive as you get a feel for how long is okay for your cat.
Most importantly: Don’t forget that your cat loves you, be patient and disinfect the cat bites properly.