How to Treat a Cat that is Afraid or is a Shy Cats

What do I do if my cat is scared? Why is my cat hiding? Does it has a shy cats problem? How should I act to help him? Solve your doubts in this article. Sometimes one of our cats is very shy, scared, runs away etc and this worries us enormously, since we want to help him but we do not know the reason for his attitude either. So the first thing we will solve will be to know the reason why the cat is afraid or shy.

Want to know about how to deal with shy cats or does your cat has a problem of fearing from others, then simply see from us about the shy cats or why cats are afraid of something when they see them. Before inquiring about the possible reasons that make a cat afraid or scary we must differentiate between these two types. A wild cat or feral cat is mainly one that barely has contact with the human, either because he was born wildly or because circumstances have led him to it. Normally these cats totally avoid contact with humans, feeling that we are a threat or simply fearing the unknown.

shy cats

These types of cats want to live in freedom and ideally the environment would allow it. Initiatives such as controlled colonies help make this happen but neither are the cats that live in these colonies prone to contact with people. So what we want to know is what happens with the other cats those who live with us.


Reasons Why a Domestic Cat is Fearful or Shy

As with people there are very different reasons that make a cat have a concrete behavior. In general the pussycat behaves in a nervous, shy and scary for the following reasons :

  • Character or genetics: Obviously the character of each cat greatly influences the way it behaves and often within that character there is a genetic load. Do not forget that the cat has had to face terrible situations throughout history, as persecutions and massacres by the human being. Another possible cause of this “inheritance” may be that her mother is a feral cat and the kitten learns from her.
  • Trauma or bad memory: If the cat has been mistreated, beaten etc. It is logical that he acts with fear and that he does not trust people. If this traumatic situation occurs in the first months of life, then the kitten is more likely to act with fear. When the trauma occurs as an adult cat, the subsequent behavior tends to be more with “violent” reactions or reflexes of this type than with fear but it can also be the case.
  • Changing environment: As we have said several times the cat is a territorial animal and normally a change of environment can affect its behavior. One of the usual situations in which a cat is afraid is when it comes back to a home so it is important to follow these tips to introduce a new cat at home.

In all these cases we are talking about cats that are shy or afraid of people but it also happens that cats show themselves in front of other animals or objects. Even the presentation between two cats is crucial so that the relationship between them is good.

Importance of Cat Socialization

As we have commented the relationship between a wild cat and a person is usually practically impossible. The difference between that cat and a domestic one is its degree of socialization.

The time to socialize a pussycat is usually from 2 to 8 weeks although some say it can last up to 12 weeks. In any case the first months of life of the kitten are very important for their socialization so the contact that during that time has had with all types of humans (of different sizes, races, ages, sexes etc) is key.

how to deal with shy cats

This does not mean that we have to adopt kittens from very young (the first 3 months is better to be with your mom) or that the first months of life we ​​have to expose the kitten to constant visits, but it is interesting that we try that if the circumstance allows it, know people of pequenito of prudent way and whenever it is of pleasing for the cat.

Tips to follow in front of a scared or shy cat

The main thing is to respect the rhythm of the cat not to force anything observe and be very patient. Following these guidelines can help the cat to be less and less fearful:

  • It generates a quiet environment without noise. Cats have a strong sense of hearing and any strange noise can put them on alert. A scary and shy cat will be happier in a quiet house.
  • It facilitates spaces in which the cat can hide or climb high. The fact that it has places such as boxes, houses, high spaces etc. It will make the cat feel more secure and that he does not have to fight a great race whenever something causes fear. When the cat feels that threat it will most likely hide or climb somewhere so if you notice that you have these types of spaces nearby, you will probably “dare” more.
  • Sobornalo with food, game or candy. The word bribe may sound bad but we refer to giving “rewards” or things that the cat likes so that little by little, we gain their trust. Each cat has its preferences: specific prizes for pigs, chicken, sausage etc or simply play with your favorite toy.
  • Watch your body language. Like us the cat uses its body language to communicate.

how to get a shy cat out of hiding

The body language in front of the Scared Cat

The cat interprets our movements or our way of addressing him as he interprets those of other species or his own. Therefore we must take into account things like:

  • Our body position: The fact that we are bigger than the cat can intimidate him, it is preferable that when approaching the pussycat we should slowly crouch or squat and not approach abruptly and stand up. In fact it is even better to make a sort of detour than to go directly to the cat as they themselves do between them when they go in peace.
  • The tone of voice: Cats are more friendly to voices that are sharper and softer than loud voices. As much as you tell him to calm down if the tone is not right he can play against you.
  • Look: For the cat a direct look is a challenge so it is better not to stare at him but to look away or look at him out of the corner of his eye. It can also help you blink or blink slowly and wait to see if it returns a similar gesture.

Other Similar Articles


We must have patience and if we insist that the cat is the one who sets the guidelines and that we should not force the cat to be less fearful or we will achieve the opposite. Normally cats have short attention spans so progress may be slow. That first dares to leave a little while then a little bit more etc. Visit our CatsFud for more information.

Leave a Reply

cats communication