Why Do Cats Scratch?

cats photo

Cats can be the most loyal pets. Your cat follows you around the house, he snuggles up with you when you are on the couch, and he is always waiting for you when you get home.

Unfortunately, however, some cats scratch. If the cat scratches hard enough, it can really hurt and even draw blood.

There are several reasons why cats scratch, and often times it is not because he doesn’t like you or because he is angry with you.

 

He Wants Your Attention

If you are doing the dishes, working on your computer, or making phone calls, and your cat starts scratching you, he is trying to get your attention.

It is not uncommon for a cat to go out of his way to get you to stop what you are doing and play with him. The best way to stop this behavior is to give him some extra attention and playtime before you start working on something else.

Often times, you will have tired your cat out, and he will need a nap, giving you all the time you need to get your work done.

cats photo

Practice for Predators

If your cat strikes you out of the blue, it could be his instincts kicking in.

Cats often scratch to practice hunting for real life predators. To stop this behavior, you should give him a chance to hunt appropriate prey, such as a toy on a string.

You can drag the toy around, and give your cat a chance to attack it.

 

They’re Redirecting their Aggression

If your cat suddenly strikes, it could be that they are angry or fearful about something that is going on around him, and you interrupted him.

He is not being mean or trying to hurt you, he is just trying to release some aggression. It is not uncommon for him to strike out if he is watching other cats out the window, or if he is fearful of small children in the room.

The best way to prevent this is to stay away from the cat if he is around anything that could be causing aggression.

cats photo
Photo by be creator

Defense Mechanism

Many cats that scare easily will scratch and even attack because they are afraid.

If they feel that they cannot get away or that they have no where to hide, they will lash out.

If you have a nervous cat, it is best to introduce him to new situations gradually.

 

Medical Reasons

If your cat is normally playful and cuddly, and suddenly he is lashing out, there could be a medical reason. If you have a long-haired cat and he has knots in his fur, it may be painful when you touch him.

He is not attacking to be mean, he is trying to tell you that he is in pain. The same is too with older cats who suffer from arthritis.

If your cat continues to attack, you should have him checked out by a vet.

cats scratching you photo

Photo by Rocky Mountain Feline Rescue

If your cat starts scratching you, it is not because he doesn’t like you.

Unfortunately, cats cannot tell you when something is bothering them, therefore, they lash out by scratching or attacking.

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