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My cat Peach is slowly becoming a very loving cat. I have raised him as a kitten with his two brothers and mom. He is the most playful cat I have ever had- and I try my best to run out his energy and keep him occupied. He’s about 2 now, and as he ages he starting to come up on people’s laps. He even cries for you to pet him if you stop. He’ll be on your lap purring looking at you contently and then all of a sudden he’ll bite your hand, arm or whatever he can get to-then hiss- then scratch- enough to draw a amount of blood. This usually doesn’t happen-but it does enough to be a pattern. I understand overstimulation is a thing- my cat Snowball does this-but usually I can tell by his expression and his tail wagging- even then he won’t go straight to biting you viciously. But Peach gives no warning-not even a hiss or growl- that I can see- and it’s quite painful- and it would be horrible if he did this to a guest of mine. Is there a sign I can look for so that I can avoid this?How should I react? I feel bad because in part it’s not his fault-but I do throw him off of me (or he keeps scratching) and then scold him- is this right? Please help.
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I have found that there is usually a slight stiffening, and a movement of the ears before the need to escape overcomes the desire for petting, but it sounds as if you are already watching for those. I would try limiting petting and lap time - just a few seconds then a pause if stroking, just a few minutes on your lap and then gently lift him down, or tempt him down with a treat or a toy if he reacts badly to being moved. And I would certainly move him off the moment he starts biting or scratching, although I doubt scolding is doing any good.