If you are a cat owner, then nothing will bring you more joy than seeing your cat comfortable and content. They may decide to follow you around the house from time to time and get up to cuddle with you when you’re on the couch or in bed. But what if your cat has suddenly become very attached; beyond what they are typically like? What can it mean, what should you do and is there anything you will need to consider? Having observed this in my own cat, I decided to spend some time researching to find out the cause and how to approach it.
So, if you are similarly wondering why my cat won’t leave me alone all of a sudden, here is why.
Cats can become very attached to their owners suddenly and not willing to leave them alone for both innocent and more concerning reasons. It could be that they are looking for company and attention, or it could mean they are hungry, stressed, anxious or suffering from an illness or injury. It is therefore imperative that you look at any recent changes to your home and environment, and observe your cat closely for any other potential behaviors that could indicate an issue.
There’s a difference between your cat following you around normally and them clinging to you, not leaving you alone.
Sometimes if your cats are following you around there’s nothing to be worried about at all, they just want your company. At the same time, you want your cat to be independent enough to spend time by themselves as well.
Its all about the balance, but we do have to consider our own circumstances and try to think objectively as to why our cats may feel the need to do this.
For example, its only natural for new cats and young kittens to follow their owners around until they get more confident in their new home and environment.
Nevertheless, its not feasible or even desirable to have your cat with you all the time; there are things you need to do and there comes a point where it can go from cute to concerning, to annoying and frustrating.
Let us now take a closer look at the reasons why a cat may cling to their owner, what it can mean and some practical strategies to giving you both more space; so that the time you enjoy together is much more special.
So, be sure to keep reading to the end to get all the information you need!
Why Is My Cat So Attached To Me Lately?
Cats naturally like to be around their people as they are a loving and social animal. They are also curious so they may want to hang around to see what it is that you are up to.
If your cat is not normally clingy, but then all of a sudden becomes so, it usually indicates that there could be something wrong.
It’s quite possible that your cat is suffering from an illness or injury or is suffering anxiety due to something that has recently changed, or has developed within their environment.
Something as simple as a new dog moving in next dog can do it, as can a change of seasons when the temperature changes and they start to feel the cold.
It can be as straightforward as that.
If you’re able to figure out what caused the anxiety, then you may be able to make the required adjustments that may make all the difference. In the context of our examples, this could include not letting your cat out during the times the dog is outside or warming your home more sufficiently.
Unfortunately, cats cannot talk to us and let us know what’s wrong, so they have to communicate in other ways. The best way they can do this is by keeping close in the hope that we’ll pick up on the concern and make it all better.
If you notice your cat clinging to your side, take a look at them physically and run your hands over them gently to ensure they have no injuries. Be sure to inspect and check all of areas of their bodies, including around the legs. Feel for any lesions, bumps, lumps or signs of discomfort from your cat.
If you feel that your cat is suffering from any injury or illness, you should look to consult and take them to your vet right away.
Boredom could be another thing that has caused your cat to start clinging to you.
Try to think of whether anything has changed that could have resulted in an increased likelihood of boredom. Have you taken their favorite toy away, has it become lost? Has the weather changed so they are spending more time indoors?
Alternatively, are you starting to spend more time at home or in areas of the home your cat typically enjoys? Sometimes a change in our own schedule is enough to disrupt that of our cats.
What Does It Mean When A Cat Won’t Leave You Alone?
If your cat will not leave you alone it does not necessarily mean that they are ill, injured, or suffering from anxiety.
They may simply just be cuddly cats wanting affection and a good old cuddle. Equally your cat may also just be seeking attention and company, and may even be a little bit lonely.
When cats are hungry, for example, they will let you know by following you around or misbehaving in the middle of the night in attempt to get fed.
If your cat is experiencing any kind of newness, whether they’re new to you, or you have moved into a new living situation, they are likely to stay closer too. They do this to feel safe, until they are comfortable enough to wander off on their own.
So, there are a number of reasons why your cat may not be leaving you alone.
There are times you may easily be able to figure out the reason, while other times may be harder to understand why they won’t leave your side.
Whatever the cause, you can be assured that it also means that they love you and trust you. They either want your company, your attention, your love, your trust, your security, or you help with something.
They wouldn’t do this otherwise.
How Can I Get My Cat to Leave Me Alone?
Why would you want your cat to leave you alone?! I know, I know, we’re talking about clingy cats here and not just cuddly cats.
I’m the type of person who loves to cuddle with my cats and I have been extremely lucky to have cats that have loved to cuddle right back.
However, not everyone wants to cuddle with their cats all the time, nor are they able to, so they do need to teach their cats some independence. And I admit, I also have my own limits as well.
Like I mentioned above, if you believe your cat is following you around due to a medical issue, taking them to a vet can make all the difference. Hopefully, after being treated your cat will be back to their old self sooner rather than later.
For boredom issues, it could be as simple as tiring your cat out, both physically and mentally. Play with your cat and give them some mentally stimulating toys and games to play with as well.
This particular toy that I got off Amazon was a gamechanger for me. Many other cat owners swear by it to, and it keeps a cat entertained for hours!
By tiring your cat, they will more than likely go somewhere quiet to curl up and nap instead of bothering you.
Much like tiring your cat out with play, feeding them can tire them out too.
Plus, if they’re following you around due to hunger, feeding them may be the only thing to keep them happy and to solve the underlying cause.
Cats tend to like to sleep for quite a bit after having a big meal, so you should have some time to yourself afterwards.
Otherwise, it may be as simple as just creating some space for yourself. Without neglecting the needs of your cat, you could simply close a door, or take them outside.
So long as your cat has all of their needs met, they are not in any discomfort or are exhibiting any major signs of stress and anxiety, you should be able to confidently leave them for a period of time.
Just be sure to check back on them after a while and see how they are faring.
What Do You Do If Your Cat Won’t Leave Your House?
There’s no need to panic if your cat will not leave your house. There are plenty of indoor cats that never go outside, and they grow up to be just fine.
In fact, they have a much lower risk of getting many infections and diseases that outdoor cats often catch.
If your cat is an indoor cat, just ensure that they have access to a clean litter box. Also, make sure that they don’t get locked inside a room where they are unable to access said litter box or their food and water.
If you would like them to go outside and leave your house, begin by going outside with them and standing by their side as they wander your yard.
If they are not willing to do this on their own accord, you may need to pick them up. If they appear to be overly stressed to being outside, then you should bring them inside. You should never force them to go out if they are not fully confident in doing so.
Nevertheless, if you do not notice any immediate concerns, you can start to lengthen the amount of time you stay outside. This way they will get more used to it, to the point where you may even be able to go back into the house on your own. In time, they may start going out on their own.
While it may take some time and consistency, cats do like to explore and are curious by nature. This should mean that they are willing and able to go outside, but may just need that gentle push to get them started.
If you have not already, consider installing a cat flap into an appropriate door. This will enable your cat to go and come as they please, and this can make all the difference. It also takes the onus of you to physically let them in and out as and when they may require it.
Either way, you may find that your cat may never leave your property – much preferring to stay closer to home. Even if they end up being more of an outdoor cat.
This actually comes with its own benefits as you know where they are at all times, and it you also know what they are exposed to and can call them in if needs be.
If you are going to let your cat go outside at all, it comes highly advised that you visit a veterinarian ahead of time. They will be able to provide your cat with all of the required shots, vaccinations and any other medicine that will help to protect them from fleas, ticks, and anything else that could harm them.
Most people either identify as either a cat person or a dog person. I’m greedy and identify as both and love to cuddle with both. However, even saying that, I have my limits too and do need some breathing space at times!
There have been more than one occasion in which I’ve needed to apologize while on calls or Zoom meetings for a dog or cat interrupting.
So, though I love cuddling with them, it’s not always an appropriate time and it’s much easier to teach a dog to stay away than it is to teach a cat to.
If your cat has suddenly become a lot more clingily or not willing to leave your side, consider that this could be down to a number of different reasons, causes or factors.
Some of these are purely innocent, such as wanting to be in your presence, whereas others could be a cause for concern and may even require veterinary assistance.
Some of the most common reasons why a cat does not usually leave their owner all of a sudden, and some good first areas to look into include:
- Newness (either to you or living location)
- Stress and Anxiety
- Injury or Illness
- Attention Seeking
- Boredom or Loneliness
The good news is that each one of these issues can be worked on. You can help your cat overcome each one and be less dependent on you and more confident on their own.
And while this may sound harsh, it is actually beneficial for you and your cat alike. You can both begin to have much better quality time with one another.
While some people may attempt to let their cat out of the house for some space, not all cats want to go outside and this should never be forced. Thankfully, indoor cats can lead perfectly healthy lives so there is no need to panic if they are not so enthused by it.
Ultimately, you want to be patient with your cat if you discover that that are being somewhat clingy and you want them to leave you alone.
Look for the underlying factors and work with them to eliminate the issues and help them gain the confidence they may need.
In the end, take it as a compliment. They love and trust you complicity, or otherwise they wouldn’t be so willing to spend so much time in your company!