(Jeddah, Saudi Arabia)
Hi Dr. Neely,
I have a 4 year old cat "Tala". I have her since she was 4 months old. She was kind and loving cat. She likes playing and still likes to play a lot. But the only thing she does nowadays is she starts scratching me whenever I come to pet her.
This started after I got married, moved with my husband and left her with my mom and dad. She likes them and she's of course used to the house. And, she's doing great with them. I visit her every week. Once I enter the house she comes to me and starts playing with me like we used to. But while playing she scratches or sometimes bites me and if I make any more moves she would fights me!
Is she angry, maybe mad that I'm leaving her or what? :(
What should I do??
Thank you so much..
I do not believe cats get "mad" at people. They feel love and fear and out of fear may behave aggressively or defensively.
Your kitty may indeed have missed you terribly in the beginning and may be happy to see you when you visit, but if she has been with your parents for some time now, she should be well adjusted.
Perhaps she is overly excited to see you and that is the cause of her reaction. Or perhaps you are overly happy to see her and compensate for your time away and maybe you act more "boisterous" for lack of a better word.
I would suggest trying to approach her very calmly and quietly and have calm and quiet times with her for awhile. Bring favorite treats with you to offer to her, a new toy perhaps, some catnip, and just lots of quiet, calm time together petting her on just the head for awhile and doing less play.
Also, please read this question and answer and also this one for advice on what to do when your cat bites you and you want to discourage that behavior. Both pages should be very helpful.
Good luck ...and by the way, thank you SO much for the absolutely adorable picture! Indescribably cute!