We add cats to our families for one reason – because we love them. So, it can be disheartening to feel like your cat doesn’t love you back, especially if they are friendly with everyone else! You feed them tasty food, care for them, and buy them toys, yet none of it seems to make a difference. Is this something to be worried about? And how can you get your cat to bond with you? Here is everything you are going to want to know.
So, why does my cat hate me but loves everyone else? Your cat may hate you but love everyone else because you may have accidentally pushed their boundaries. Alternatively, they could simply have a preference for someone else, even a particular gender. It could also be that your cat is picking up on your negative emotions, anger, or stress and would rather stay away.
Thankfully there are some things you can do to build and strengthen your bond with your car.
We’ll get into them shortly.
But first, let’s explore those reasons why your cat may have developed a disliking of you.
Besides, it’s essential to know to turn it all around!
Why Does My Cat Like Others More Than Me
Your cat may seem to like others more than you for a variety of reasons, from previous encounters where you have upset them, overstepping boundaries and trust, or it could be they are sensing negative emotions that they do not pick up from other people.
For a long time, cats were considered to be independent, aloof, and stubborn, with no desire for human companionship. However, recent research has proved that this is not the case.
Studies have shown that cats form secure emotional attachments, just like dogs and children.
This means that the presence of a caregiver helps them to feel calm, safe, and comfortable enough to explore their surroundings.
Saying that it’s important to note that every cat is different depending on its breed, personality, and upbringing.
Some breeds are thought to form strong emotional bonds with their owners.
Often only one person in particular, which may not be you!
These breeds include:
- Russian Blues
- Norwegian Forest Cats
With this in mind, let’s explore the reasons.
You Have Upset Your Cat In The Past
Cats are sensitive creatures.
They also have long-term memories that can impact their everyday decisions.
For example, if you raised your voice to your cat in the past, they may remember the fear they felt, which can lead to anxiety whenever you are around.
You Have Overstepped Your Cats Boundaries
Mutual respect and trust are essential if you want to build a strong bond with your feline companion.
If you continuously wake your cat up from a nap to cuddle them, you are likely to receive a negative reaction.
This is especially important for rescue cats or those that have experienced trauma in the past.
It’s important to remember that cats are not naturally social animals. In the wild, most cat species are solitary.
Over the years, cats have learned to become more social, but trust is still a very big factor.
They Are Picking Up On Your Negative Emotions
If you are nervous around your cat, they are likely to become nervous around you.
This is because cats can pick up on subtle body cues that we are often unaware of, such as a change in voice pitch.
Furthermore, a study published in the PLOS One journal suggested a parallel relationship between the personalities of owners and their feline companions.
Owners that displayed signs of anxiety or neuroticism reported that their cats were more likely to have behavioral problems themselves, such as aggression and other stress-related problems.
So, in simple terms, your cat could be nervous around you because you are displaying signs of nervousness yourself!
Your Cat Has A Gender Preference
There have been several studies that suggest cats prefer female owners.
There has been a lot of debate among experts as to why this is, but it could be down to the way we interact with our felines; when first meeting a cat, female owners tend to chat more in a high-pitched voice.
They also generally tend to be more affectionate towards their feline companions.
However, this could also be caused by several other factors, including how long each member of the household stays at home.
Signs That A Cat Doesn’t Like You
Before we delve into potential responses, let’s look at the signs a cat doesn’t actually like you.
Besides, it’s important to confirm it is indeed the case!
Your Cat Walks Away From You
Are you finding that your cat simply walks off whenever you try to stroke him or initiate a play session?
Cats are not afraid to show their feelings if something displeases them. So, this is a clear sign that they don’t appreciate your efforts!
If this happens occasionally, it’s nothing to worry about. However, if it happens all the time, then there may be a problem.
Your Cat Bites You
Love bites are gentle nibbles that are designed to show affection.
However, a harder bite, especially if it’s accompanied by a hiss, is your cat’s way of telling you that they are seriously not happy with you.
Your Cat’s Tail Hangs Low Or Puffs Up When You Are Around
A cat’s tail is one of its most communicative body parts. So, it’s worth paying attention.
A quivering tail that is held high in the air belongs to a very happy, content cat.
However, a low-hanging tail means your cat is feeling fearful, nervous, or annoyed. Similarly, a puffed-up tail is a sign of fearfulness or aggression.
Like many species in the animal kingdom, cats will puff themselves up to appear bigger and more threatening when they are feeling defensive or scared.
Other warning signs to watch out for include a swishing or lashing tail.
Do not attempt to approach a cat that is displaying any of these signs because you could get bitten or scratched.
Your Cat Hides From You
Not all cats will attack if they feel threatened or unhappy.
Many cats will simply run off and hide until the perceived danger goes away.
So, if your cat disappears every time you enter the room, they are probably wary of your presence.
So, now you know the signs to watch out for, but what could be causing this behavior? Let’s run through some of the main reasons now:
How Do You Bond With A Cat That Hates You?
To successfully build a bond with a cat that hates you, you need to put in the effort. The first step is to understand what your cat is trying to tell you by observing their body language. This will help you to understand their needs and know when it’s safe to interact.
Cats primarily express their emotions through the movement of their eyes, ears, and tail.
Negative signs to watch out for include:
- Dilated pupils
- Flattened ears
- Arched back
- Raised hairs
- Tail and limbs held close to the body
- Tense body
So, what can you do to help your cat to trust you? Here are a few ways you can improve your bond with your cat:
Feed Your Cat At The Same Time Each Day
Cats are lovers of routine, which is a trait that you can use to your advantage.
No matter how busy you are, make sure you feed them at the same time every day.
Your cat will soon begin to see you as the main caregiver, which will help to build up trust.
Play sessions can be a great way to bond with your cat because hunting is a natural instinct.
Diving after a wand toy can even reduce stress levels in your feline companion and make them feel more at ease in your presence.
In addition, this form of interaction will keep your hands well away from your cat’s paws and teeth.
Let Your Cat Approach You In Their Own Time
It can be tempting to just lavish your cat with attention, but you must respect their boundaries.
Tempt them over to you with treats, but if it doesn’t work, simply wait until the next opportunity.
Cats are territorial creatures that have a strong need to be in control of their surroundings.
If you push their boundaries, you are likely to be met with a swipe.
Keep Interactions Short
In the beginning, you should only be stroking your cat a couple of times during each interaction (if they let you!).
This will be less overwhelming than a full-on cuddle and will allow your cat to move away if they feel the need.
Start by offering out your hand for them to sniff, then try a few gentle strokes on the chin or the back.
Be wary of sensitive areas such as the rear end, tail, paws, and stomach.
When interacting with your cat, it’s also a good idea to get to know the subtle happy behaviors that indicate your cat is comfortable in your presence, such as kneading, purring, and gently swaying its tail.
If your cat displays any aggressive or nervous behaviors, take a step back or leave the room until they have calmed down.
NEVER Punish Your Cat
If your cat swipes at you, simply remove yourself from the situation. If you yell at your cat, you are likely to elicit even more fear.
More often than not, your cat will have been displaying subtle behaviors to show their annoyance way before the attack.
Learn to understand these body cues so you can end the interaction before it gets aggressive rather than punishing them once the deed is done.
How Long Will It Take To Bond With Your Cat
The length of time it will take to bond with your cat will vary depending on their personality and upbringing. Some cats will bond straight away, whereas others may take several weeks, especially if they have experienced any form of past trauma.
The most important thing is to remain consistent and sensitive to their needs. Your cat will bond with you when they are ready.
It’s worth noting that older cats will generally take longer to bond with new owners compared to young kittens.
This is because cats have a critical socialization period at 2-9 weeks of age, where they learn to become comfortable around people.
During this time, they will learn what is good and what should be avoided, so they are generally more willing to interact.
This doesn’t mean that you cannot bond with an older cat; it just means they may take a little longer to get used to you.
Remember that cats are not like dogs. They don’t tend to show obvious signs of affection, such as jumping up on you and licking your face and hair.
Simple behaviors such as sleeping in the same room as you or choosing to curl up next to you are signs that your feline companion is comfortable being in your presence.
Other signs your cat is starting to trust you include:
- Following you around your home.
- Slow blinking.
- Rubbing against you.
- Sleeping or relaxing with their belly exposed.
Other Suggestions To Help You Bond With Your Cat
Here are some other tips and tricks to bear in mind that will help you to bond with your cat:
Play Hard To Get
Have you ever noticed that cats tend to go up to the people that ignore them rather than the ones that bombard them with cuddles?
Cats like to be in charge of interactions, so let them!
Find A Cat That Fits Your Lifestyle
Every cat has a different personality, but you can judge their characters somewhat depending on their breed.
If you work from home and you are looking for a playful, affectionate companion, then consider choosing an Abyssinian, Siamese, or Burmese cat.
Conversely, if you are looking for a more subdued, independent character, then a British Shorthair, Russian Blue, or Persian may be better.
If your personalities are in sync, you are much more likely to develop a lasting bond.
Sometimes, it’s not enough to simply understand your cat’s body language. It can actually be very beneficial to copy their actions.
One of the best ways to do this is with a slow blink.
This will show your cat that you are not a threat and will also convey a level of trust.
Offer nutritious food and tasty treats, stick to a routine, and don’t forget to give your cat space when they need it.
Your cat may love you one day and be completely aloof the next.
This is perfectly normal. The most important thing is to remain as consistent as possible.
Whether it takes a few days or a few months, by following the steps in this article, you will soon have a beloved bond with your cat that is based on mutual respect, trust, and love.
When your cat dislikes you, their owner, there really is nothing worse.
Thankfully this is something you can work on.
In time, with a little bit of effort, you should find your cat comes around!
I am a practiced pet owner with decades of experience owning a number of different pets. I am also the main writer and chief editor here at Pet Educate; a site I created to share everything I’ve learned about pet ownership over the years and my extensive research along the way.