Cats are famous for being aloof and solitary. In fact, there is even a condition known as ‘feline independence disorder’ in which the cat actively avoids affection or refuses to come when called. However, there are some ways that you can encourage your cat to enjoy cuddles and kisses.
Step 1 – Learn to read your cat’s body language
You should familarize yourself with your cat’s body language to see if it is likely to be purring or hissing. For example, you might notice that when the cat is happy its ears are pushed forward and the back is arched slightly.
It may also knead you with its paws while purring, which can indicate affection. But don’t take these signs at face value – cats’ moods can change quickly, and it is not a good idea to approach a cat that seems aggressive or fearful.
Step 2 – Understand why your cat doesn’t like cuddles
Cats have evolved over thousands of years to avoid people. They are solitary animals and it is normal for them to wander from home. In the wild, they eat and sleep alone and avoid contact with humans wherever possible.
If you try to pick up or cuddle a cat when it does not want your attention, it may bite you. You should also be careful not to scare your cat by being too aggressive in play because this can make it more likely to attack.
Step 3 – Praise your cat when it does want affection
You should find out which times during the day your cat likes to be petted. It may like you to stroke its head or back, for example, and this will create an association between these activities and positive feeling.
This can help the cat to associate you with affection, and it will be more open to being cuddled.
Step 4 – Give your cat a treat or food reward when it wants attention
The positive reinforcement method can also be used if you notice your cat wanting to play. You should immediately offer the petting session that it desires, and then give the cat a treat afterwards.
This will teach it to associate affection with rewards, and this can help to make the petting more pleasant for you both.
Step 5 – Show your cat that you are a friend
A lot of cats share their homes with dogs. These other pets should be introduced as soon as possible because they can become a positive influence on your cat. The dog will usually encourage the cat to play, and this can help to form a bond based on trust and affection.
The relationship between your cat and dog may also be beneficial for you because it means that you are less likely to encounter aggression if you try to stroke or cuddle the cat.
Step 6 – Redirect your cat’s energy
Cats have a lot of natural energy and can get into mischief when they are bored. This means that you should provide it with toys so that the cat does not resort to chewing or scratching your possessions instead.
You may also find that playing games with the cat yourself is a fun activity for both of you.
Step 7 – Learn about cat communication
If you want to become a better communicator with your cat, it may be worth learning more about feline body language. When cats are happy or content, they will hold their tail in a particular way and stretch out on their side with all four legs pointing forward.
You should avoid petting any areas that the cat is marking with its own scent because this may indicate that it is feeling aggressive or territorial.
There you have it a few steps that you can use to help get your cat to be more affectionate. Do remember that not all cats are born to be affectionate, it’s best you also learn to love your cat just the way he/she is.