Why Do Cats Hiss Actually?

To challenge an angry cat is obviously intimidating. It might sometimes happen that your usually peaceful, cool tempered cat suddenly shows out of the way attitude, changes its posture with an ambition to dominate and shows off its teeth ferociously to terrorize. And then without notice, breathes out hot air with a loud hiss, which can deter anyone or anything. This often might make any pet owner wonder why do cats hiss?

It’s not surprising that you get surprised at such uncalled behavior of your cat which seemed to you the most loving creature on earth. But instead of getting afraid or offended, you must take care to find out the reason behind such conduct of your loving feline friend. Here in this article, some common reasons of cat hissing have been discussed and what you can do to avoid or abate such behavior.

Why Do Cats Hiss?

A cat’s hiss is usually a warning sign that indicates he or she is aggressive and will continue to be in this mood if you don’t step back. At times, these hisses can be fearful and are a clear sign that it is ready to involve in a battle if required. Besides this, many cat behavior experts strongly believe that a feline produces hissing sound in order to mimic a snake’s hissing to deter the opponents.

Why Does A Cat Hiss? – Other Reasons Explained:

Here are some more reasons to make a note of to understand a cat’s hiss better:

1. Rescued Cats Can Hiss Due To Fear

So you have rescued a kitty recently, and you see that she hisses at you and your family. Here are some tips for such situation:

  • You have to handle such situation patiently. Go slow and maintain a reliable, predictable, stable and calm household.
  • Give your cat enough freedom for its personal space and playfulness to find expression. Provide enough hiding places, elevated perches, scratching posts, and other things which it craves for.
  • Try to enhance the mood of your kitty with the help of mood improvers like catnip and Feliway. However, different cats respond to different mood elevators, and the effect of some can die down with regular use. Therefore, care should be taken while giving them mood enhancers.

2. Cat Hissing May Express Displaced Aggression

There are times when cats can’t help but hiss to vent their frustration and therefore, they take help of an easy target as you. To avoid such nasty feline encounter, make a note of these:

  • Engage your cat in playful activities like diverting its attention by moving a wand toy alluringly so that it grabs its attention, or play with a ball or toy by throwing it here and there so that it provokes your cat for a chase.
  • Try to resolve the primary source of aggression. Try to understand and get hold of those things which are creating a problem for your kitty.

3. They Don’t Want To Do Something You Are Dictating

Cat hissing may happen when they are disagreeing with something you are ordering them to do. It can include anything from moving off a piece of their favorite furniture, sitting in the carrier, getting off the counter top and many such small but significant actions. You can reduce cat hissing by:

  • Staying casual and maintaining a calm composure. To act as if nothing unusual has happened.
  • Getting your kitty used to the changes and other activities. For example, you can give your cat a new place to scratch on instead of its favorite furniture, like an old rubber mat or a worn out piece of furniture you no longer use.
  • Provide your kitty a new place to settle down in place of her favorite lounge counter top so that it does not complain.
  • If necessary, you can take help of oven mitts and gloves to protect your hands.

Also Read: Why Do Cats Knead? – Common Reasons Explained

Frequent Cat Hissing

If cat hissing is getting frequent and getting involved with the regular life activity of your cat or a neighbor’s cat, you need to immediately find out the reason behind such actions first and then take the necessary course of action. Your cat might be hissing to express certain problems like mental disturbance or physical injury. Rule out all the possible causes of such problems by consulting with your veterinarian. He/she may recommend options like medications or therapy as needed.

1. Cats Hissing At Strangers

So you have invited your favorite Uncle Sam or your long lost friend Rosa to your house for dinner. It is likely that your cat might hiss at these unseen strangers. He might feel threatened as he can initially think them to be intruders trying to grab his territory. But of course, to avoid such encounters, you can resort to the following measures:

2. Make Your Guests Aware

Inform your relatives or guests beforehand about the cat and its behavior so that they maintain them likewise and not try to provoke or get to any undue contact with the kitty. However, they must remain fresh and composed and practically ignore her until and unless she comes for herself to initiate any conversation. It is important that both you and your guests give her ample time and space to create the comfort zone that she desires.

3. Teach Your Guests The Art Of Petting Your Kitty

To break the ice between your guests and your pet, it is important that you show your guests the way they should treat your cat. Petting seems to be a solid option, but they should be taught the areas which are safe for initial petting. Also, you can teach them some playful activities they can engage themselves with the kitty like throwing a ball in the doorway for the cat to chase, moving a toy along the floor or behind the furniture, etc.

Take Care To Provide Your Pet Cat With The Necessary Amenities:

  • Places To Hide And Play: Please your cat’s mood and reduce cat hissing with goodies like cat DVDs or some soothing music CDs. If offered secure and ample hideaways, a cat might feel more confident and at ease to go in privacy when a guest comes over.
  • Make Your Kitty Used To The Visitors Gradually: When you have frequent visitors, it is likely that slowly but steadily your cat won’t mind much and would gradually accept to welcome the guests. Invite people who are cat-friendly and know how to handle such beings. To your surprise, the cat may very well gel with your people and make them her favorite gang!

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