How do I make my cat love me?
So you’ve either just got a new cat, or you have had a cat for a while that you feel may seem a little more distant from you than you would like. You feel like maybe they seem too wary of you or that they just don’t like you at all. You may be asking the question “How do I make my cat love me?”
Firstly, keep in mind that all cats have very different personalities! Even though they are all essentially the same breed of animal. Some cats can naturally be more showing of love and trust than others. Some cats can be move affectionate towards women, but not so much men.
It is definitely easier to ensure that your cat feels comfortable around humans when they have been brought up in a loving and safe environment from kitten-hood, but there will be some cats that may have been brought to a rescue home that haven’t had as easy an upbringing as others. They may have faced abuse or neglect. This can make then generally wary of humans.
Whatever the reason that your cat doesn’t connect well with you, there are ways that you can make your cat feel happier and more loving around you!
Now this tip is going to be mostly helpful to people who have acquired a new cat very recently. Eye contact, from the view of a feline that hasn’t created a bond with you, can be something that is seen as threatening behaviour.
If your cat is seated in a spot, this could be on your cough or a table, then you can approach slowly without looking at them in the eye. Slowly take a seat or kneel down to a lower level and keep your head near them without looking directly at them.
If you meet eye contact then you can use a trick known as a “slow blink”. This is something that you may have seen other cats do a lot when they seem in a content and relaxed mood.
Slowly close your eyes and open them again. You may notice that your cat may copy your actions and then seem less interested. If they turn away in a content looking manner after you have looked at them and used this technique, then this may be a sign you have actually made a bond.
Once your cat is bonded with you, eye contact isn’t an problem any more.
Don’t stand over your cat!
Be careful not to approach a wary cat at standing height. Getting too close to them and standing high above them will only make them feel under threat and they will usually dash over to the nearest exit of the room. Even cats that are well bonded with their owners don’t like being stood over.
The same thing can be said if they are sitting in a corner. It’s best not to make them feel trapped with their only path to “safety” being blocked.
I’ve have previously used a technique of sitting on the floor with my legs crossed, talking quietly and calmly whilst tapping my hand lightly on the floor to allow two lost looking cats to approach me after they kept sneaking into my the house at night. The cats would always run out if they ever saw me walking towards them.
If a cat can see you sitting a level close to their height without approaching them, then they will feel a lot more inclined to come towards you. I can tell you that the cats that eventually approached me were rubbing up against me and purring as if they had known me for years within about 15 minutes. We later found out that these two cats had recently been abandoned by the same owner and were looking for a place to call home.
Be carful of quick movements
If your cat is especially wary, then be careful not to move quickly or suddenly around them. Taking your cat by surprise is never a good thing if they are already skittish.
Lie on the floor
This doesn’t work with every cat, but something I have learnt from owning cats is that if you lie on the floor when they are sitting and watching you they are very likely to jump down and be drawn towards you. You can easily do this in your lounge if your cat is sitting on your sofa.
Your cat may start nudging you with their nose and mooching around as if they want to play or be touched. This may be something to do with their curiosity as they don’t often see a human lying at such a low level, and of course being at a low level is less threatening to them.
Reading a book in a relaxed position
If you like to read anyway, then a good idea would be to read in a room where your cat likes to spend a lot of it’s time. You can lie in a relaxed position whilst quietly reading your book and you may find that your cat suddenly becomes interested in you and wants your attention.
Let your cat sit down and pet/stroke them for some time. This may become a habit for your cat and it can let them feel closer to you. It is best to allow a wary cat to look for your attention, rather than trying to force them to give you their attention. This definitely helps your cat love you be around you.
This point goes back to where I was earlier talking about the two abandoned cats approaching me. Letting a cat do something that seems like it was their idea is much better than trying to force actions from them. You can maybe think of it as a little bit like playing hard to get.
Smelling of other animals
If you work or spend your day around other animals from a different household, then this could possibly be a reason as to why your cat may feel wary of you, and not love to be around you. In this case, you will want to try not to have the scents of other animals on you when you approach your cat.
If you can, try to change into clean clothes as quickly as possible when returning to your home and keeping the old clothes away from your cat. You don’t want to give your cat any reason to feel like their territory is threatened.
Be the one to feed your cat
If you find that your cat is more fond of other people in your household than they are of you, then you may want to make a point of being the person who feeds your cat food more often if you don’t regularly do that already. They may possibly feel more trusting of you if you are the one to be bringing them food.
Another good point to be made here, is not to overfeed your cat. They will be drawn to you a little more when they are hungry and may show more affection.
Tickle/pet your cat in the right places
Most cats have similar places that they like to be touched and tickled, but some like certain places more than others. Find where your cat reacts well to being tickled and make sure you spend a bit of time each day making them feel happy and comfortable using those spots. If your cat rolls over onto their back, then that is a great sign that they have a lot of trust in you.
Keep in mind that not all cats will roll over. Some love to be tickled on their belly for as long as possible, and other cats will like it only for a few seconds before they go to grab or playfully bite you. This purely depends how sensitive your cat is in those spots.
Play with your cat a lot!
Lastly, cats love to play! The easiest way to play with your cat is to find a piece of string (this can be hanging from the end of a rod) with possibly a feather or small object hanging from the end and dangle this above their head. You can simply drag the string along the floor and your cat will love to chase the end of it.
A side note here is that you will often see your cat’s tail twitching quite abruptly. They will do this when they are in playful/hunting mode, but they will also do this if they are agitated.
If you see your cat showing this behaviour when you’re not playing with them, then it is best to just keep calm around them and try not to bother them until stop doing it and seem more content.
Hopefully if you try to follow the advice given in this article, then your cat should eventually show you a lot more affection and start to love to be around you. As was said earlier, all cats are different and some cats may always just be a little more wary in their personality than others. Just try to adapt to each of your cat’s needs and make them happy in the ways that they prefer.