15 Ways to Help Shy Cats with Love and Patience

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Believe it or not, owning a cat isn’t for the faint-hearted. Their temperament requires extra patience, more so if you want to get on their good side. Some cats get cozy from the get-go, but some might need a bit of encouragement. Here’s how to win them over.

Schedule Play Dates Early On


While their brains are still growing, kittens “socialize” between the ages of two and nine weeks old, preparing them to deal with the world around them. A confident cat is a happy cat, so doing this technique will help alleviate any anxiety they might develop as they grow older. 

Allow the Cat to Lead

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As much as we want to hug these furballs like there’s no tomorrow, it’s best to keep distance and wait for them to approach. Shy cats tend to be jumpy with sudden movements or sounds. Don’t force interaction. Eventually, they’ll get used to your presence and feel more at ease.

Establish a Consistent Routine

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Much like kids, cats thrive better when they follow a schedule. For starters, feeding them at certain times of the day will help them relax, reduce their nervousness, and reciprocate the affection given to their fur parent. 

Let Them Eat in Peace


Offering a peaceful and secluded area for your feline friend’s eating needs will help reduce tension and provide an atmosphere where they can enjoy these essential activities more comfortably. Making this minor change will help them adjust to their surroundings, especially if there are other creatures around.

Give Them a Secret Kitty Kingdom


To achieve the best outcomes, it is ideal to provide your cat with high, dimly lit hiding locations that will appeal to its natural inclinations. Positions behind couches or atop bookshelves give the perfect blend of privacy and height. Cats feel more secure if they can observe their surroundings from a distance. 

Keep Noise at a Minimum

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Reducing distractions and noise is essential. Vacuum cleaners, police sirens, and other loud noises may frighten most critters. Maintain an understated atmosphere at home. To set the mood for relaxation, try using a pheromone spray or a diffuser in the room.

Hushed Up Tones are Preferred

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Speak softly and encouragingly while interacting with your cat. To avoid making your furry companion feel threatened, sit close to the feline’s feet instead of standing over them. Get them to settle down by offering them a yummy reward and giving them a gentle stroke.

Don’t Chase Them Around

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Cats are highly cautious of their surroundings by nature. If they bolt upon seeing you, it’s perfectly normal. To keep your beloved pet from becoming more anxious, give it the freedom to hide whenever it wants. If they always do this, simply go around them or turn around to face the other direction.

Playtime is Always a Good Idea

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Find out what your four-legged friend enjoys playing with by scheduling frequent playtime sessions. Give them some one-on-one time with toys that suit their personality. For timid cats, try a feather wand or a laser pointer that can concentrate on faraway things. Constant bonding sessions will establish trust in no time.

Body Language is Everything

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Something as simple as the ear position or a bushy tail can help determine a kitty’s mood. By learning their vocalizations and body language, you can better understand when they are scared or angry, which can help manage difficult situations and enforce a stronger rapport. 

Do Not Use Force

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If you force your cat to do anything against their will, you may ruin your fragile bond. It is crucial to have a calm and collected demeanor marked by patience and care. Remember, a sweet gesture to you may feel hostile to them!

Slow Blink Means I Love You

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Deliberate, gradual winking is a subtle but powerful method for building trust in the complex realm of cat-human communication. Softly shifting your face away from your feline friend while keeping your eyes half-open sends a sense of protection and comfort. Over time, they’ll return the favor and slowly blink back.

No Human Strangers Allowed

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Cats are hypervigilant, even with humans with good intentions. This behavior is triggered by people at home who only want to befriend them. Make sure to remind all visitors to avoid chasing or forcefully petting the animal. Keep them away from children who tend to be grabby, too.

Observe Proper Hand Positioning

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When approaching your cat, think of ninja precision. Keep those fingers and fists tightly together, like a stealthy warrior ready to unveil the secrets of kitty diplomacy. Apparently, spread-out fingers look suspiciously like unsheathed claws, triggering the kitty alarm bells for aggression.

Some Feral Considerations


If your furry pal is feral, it may take longer to break their barrier. Feral animals tend to be more antagonistic than cats from the rescue shelter or pet store. The same steps indicated above still apply, but don’t expect quick results.


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