From the tiniest kittens to those seriously giant Maine Coon cats, felines have a reputation for being…disagreeable. One second they’re loving the attention, and the next they can’t stand to be touched. They keep you on your toes, but that cattitude gets easier to predict with time. You get to know all those likes, dislikes, and crazy quirks.
But what happens when kitty’s already tremulous moods get even more unreliable? She might start swatting and hissing for no reason or avoid people altogether. That’s when you know something is wrong. You can’t have a sit-down chat about her feelings, but for the sake of your sanity and your cat’s well-being, you can do a little digging. If your cat is moody in ways you just don’t understand, it might be for one of these common reasons.
#1. They Don’t Feel Well
The most common and most urgent reason why your cat is moody has to do with her health. Think about it: when you don’t feel well, you don’t typically act like a ray of sunshine. You get grumpy and defensive, and your cat does the same thing.
Because cats can’t tell us when they’re hurting, their moody behavior is often one of the only noticeable symptoms. If your cat behaves normally most of the time but freaks out if you try to pet a specific body part, that’s a sign she might be injured. It could be a muscle strain, sprain, or arthritis. There’s also the possibility your cat is suffering from something more internal, like cancer, hyperthyroidism, or aortic thromboembolism.
Besides being moody, a cat in pain might also stop eating, avoid their litter box, or hide for long periods of time. It’s important to talk to a vet to rule out medical issues and catch potential problems before it’s too late.
#2. They’re Feeling Overwhelmed
A cat’s life isn’t all catnip and feather toys. Your feline feels stress, anxiety, and confusion just like you do. When those emotions become overwhelming, it can cause your kitty to act out in unpredictable ways.
Think about what’s happening in your house around the time your cat is moody. If your household is particularly busy with kids rushing to get ready for school or family members cheering loudly for their favorite football team, all that action might be too much for your cat to handle. Some cats prefer their environments to be calm and quiet.
This scenario even applies to cats that have lived in the same home for years. If the energy level in your house hasn’t changed but your cat’s mood has, it could be a simple sign that your cat is getting older. The best thing to do is to be conscious of the activity level when you know your cat is around. And when you can’t control the chaos, make sure kitty has a safe place to go where she can escape and relax. A comfy crate tucked into the quietest corner of the house will work nicely.