Why Doesn’t My Cat Like To Be Picked Up And Held?

why doesn't my cat like to be picked up and held?

We adore cats for their endearing qualities and unique personalities. They say that a cat’s love is earned and not given, and the same can be said for their affection as well. Cats will be cats, and oftentimes, this means that the ways that our cats show us their love for us will come strictly on their terms. We love to show our cats affection through sweet talk and kind gestures, and many of us would love to carry our cats around if they allow it. We know that there are cats that are lap cats and even cats who love to perch on shoulders, but what about cats that do not like to be held? If you’ve ever wondered to yourself “Why doesn’t my cat like to be picked up and held?” you wouldn’t be the first cat person to ask yourself that. Here we will take a closer look inside the feline mind to help you better understand why your cat prefers not to be held…

why doesn't my cat like to be picked up and held?

As we mentioned above, cats are individuals by nature

No two people will ever be the same, and the same is true for our feline friends. Some cats are clingy and will follow you wherever you go, and those cats usually are fans of being held and carried around, too. For some cats who are a bit more on the skittish side, they might be the type of cat that prefer to be near you on the ground and not high up in your arms because it makes them nervous. The thought of being held up high creates fear in their mind, so this is why they’ll try to jump out—and likely leave some claw marks on you courtesy of their sharp murder mittens. Your cat having their feet high up off the floor might not allow them to feel safe or secure, which are both very important things in the mind of a cat. Remember, being held is not a natural behavior for cats. Now, this is not to say that you can’t teach a cat to trust you enough to allow you to hold them. Establishing trust with your cat is important, and there are expert ways to make that happen. So, don’t give up just yet if you’re determined to get your cat to trust you enough that you can carry them in your loving arms. 

Some cats don’t like to be held because they are fearful from past experiences

Your cat’s memory is very sharp. They use those core memories to develop their personality and their interactions with humans from a young age shape how they feel about situations with humans as they mature. Poor socialization as a kitten can create a cat that is fearful of human touch—especially when that involves being held which some cats can find restraining. Additionally, the base of your cat’s tail is quite sensitive when compared to the rest of their body. Being held like a baby isn’t exactly the most comfortable position for them, and this awkward hold can irritate them quickly. Some pet health professionals have even said that cats do not like to be held because this makes them feel disrespected.

why doesn't my cat like to be picked up and held?

Your cat might not want to be your purrito

A cat that has a thick and dense coat like a British Shorthair, for example, might not be the cuddliest of cats because they get warm easily. We know that cats seek warmth, but when our body heat gives off warmth in addition to their thick and luxurious cat coat, it might just be too much warmth for their liking. Now, this is not true for every cat, and cats that have finer coats or even no hair, like a Sphynx cat, might feel all warm and cozy inside when you hold them or even wrap them up in a blanket while holding them. If your cat is not a fan of being held, simply allow them to show you affection on their terms. A lot of times, cats will be very affectionate if you’re still, like the times when you’re in bed or on the sofa watching television. 

A cat that once liked to be held but no longer enjoys it could indicate something is amiss

Cats are the masters of hiding their pain. And they do not possess the ability to tell you in your language what is going on with them. That’s why they rely on us to know the signs that something is wrong. If you know the signs that your cat is in pain, this helps tremendously. A cat that is in pain will often exhibit a sudden change in behavior, for instance, a cat that once loved being held but now hates it is a clear indicator that something is amiss. Your cat might overgroom or pay special attention to a part of their body that is causing them pain, and your picking them up could have made that pain significantly worse. If this ever happens to you and your cat, a trip to the vet is a must.

why doesn't my cat like to be picked up and held?

There are times when a cat might need to be safely restrained, and there are ways to do it without ending up in cat scratches. Check out this next article on CattitudeDaily.com that will teach you how to safely restrain your cat like a pro.

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