Why is my cat being so clingy?

Posted on: 18 August 2016

As much as pet owners love their animals, it can be frustrating if they are extra clingy and won't let you complete the tasks that you need to do. Here are some of the causes of clinginess and some things that you can do to help these issues. 

Early separation from mum

When kittens are taken away too early from their mother, they can become overly attached to their owners as a replacement. Often this can result in clinginess as well as some kitten-like behaviour such as trying to suckle on your clothes. The best way to prevent this is to allow the kittens to stay with their mothers until naturally weaned, although there may be times when this is not possible, such as when the mother is killed before the kittens are independent. It can be useful to use some synthetic cat pheromone spray in the cats' bedding and to create a warm and comfortable nook for the kitten to sleep in. 

Rescue cats

Rescue cats can often be very clingy as well, especially if they have had some previously bad experiences with people. Once they form a bond, it can be strong and hard to break! Often this settles down over time as the cat starts to calm down and feel more comfortable in the space. It can be useful to give them some space to allow them to explore the place independently so that they can gain confidence in your home.

A change in cat dynamics

When you introduce a new cat into the household, this can make other cats in the house nervous. It is a good idea to make sure that each cat in the household has their own space and enough access to food and water, and plenty of individual attention. This should hopefully calm down as the cats get used to each other. 

Medical issues

There are a range of medical issues that can make cats more nervous and clingy. This can include cataracts or other issues that affect their vision, issues that affect the cats' balance such as joint instability, and hormonal issues that can affect the cats' moods such as abnormal thyroid function. If your cat suddenly starts becoming much more clingy, it's a good idea to get them checked up by a vet as they can review the potential medical issues and determine if they need to get some treatment.