Is your cat a “scaredy cat”?
Some cats can hide for hours. They place themselves so discretely in their hiding place that you may think they’ve run away. When they hesitantly emerge, their ears are pulled back and they may turn and look away if approached. If we get too close, the cat will spit, go rigid and try to escape. That’s how some cats get labelled “wild.” But is wild the right word—or are these cats simply fearful or timid?
“Some fear is normal and even welcome since it can help your cat avoid dangerous situations,” says Dr. Isabelle Demontigny-Bédard, a veterinarian specializing in animal behaviour at the DMV veterinary centre. “But showing signs of fear or stress frequently and without reason indicates an underlying problem.”
Does your cat walk low to the ground in certain situations? Do they look constantly on their guard? Have they been urinating outside the litterbox, on furniture or the wall? Be sure not to punish them, which may only aggravate the problem. Instead, book an appointment with your veterinarian soon to discuss the issue. They can determine whether specific training tools and techniques will help or if your pet requires medication. They will also ensure your cat is in good health. Your vet and their team may also draw up an action plan based on your needs and those of your pet.