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How To Get A Cat To Come Out Of Hiding

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How to Get your Cat out of Hiding

Sometimes shy or fearful cats need a short course of psych meds to break out of a negative cycle. I did go this route with Tara, and I kind of wish I hadnt waited so long. Shortly after she got her first dose, I picked her up and brought her into the living room with me; she settled onto my lap and purred for hours. I admit that is the first and last time shes felt that comfortable in the living room, but I havent given up on meds yet.

Have you had a shy cat or dealt with cat anxiety before? What did you do to help her feel more courageous and start exploring all of her environment? Please share your tips in the comments.

Read;more about shy cats on;

Why Is My Cat Suddenly Hidingand How To Help

Some cats hide under the bed. Others, in closets. And others, have a hiding spot so good you still dont know where it is.

Although shyness is a personality trait and hiding under certain circumstances is okay, its important to know when its normal, when theres something wrong, and when you need to build their confidence.

Ill tell you how to spot each of these scenarios, and then give you some advice on what to do to help your kitty feel like they always belong even when guests visit.

How Do I Get My Cat Out Of Hiding

The first rule of thumb is not to force it. That is, unless you absolutely have to. If you are concerned that your cat needs medical attention, find a way to gently remove him from his hiding spot. Sometimes this might involve carefully securing him by the scruff of his neck and then calmly moving him to his carrier. Another option is to infuse a towel or blanket with a calming pheromone spray and place it in or near your cats hiding spot. If your cat gets on it, you may be able to gently wrap it around him in order to secure him for a vet visit.

If you have a new cat or have just moved into a new home with your cat, allow them some time to acclimate to all of the intangibles about their new space. Once theyve had some time to adjust, a great way to coax a cat out of hiding is stinky treats or catnip. If you have a food-motivated cat, this can be a simple way to show your kitty the new place is ok, whereas catnip can make him forget about his troubles long enough to realize all is well. Irresistible toys such as flying feather sticks can also work wella cats prey drive is pretty hard to ignore.

Overall, if you are not concerned that your cat may have a medical issue, let your cat make the decision to come out of hiding. Forcing things can damage trust between you whereas respect for the feline independent streak, patience, treats, and lots of love can only strengthen your bond.

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Why Are Some Cats Fearful

Fearful behavior in cats can be caused by various factors. Insufficient exposure to humans and/or a variety of stimuli during kitten hood as well as traumatizing events in their lives can teach them to react fearfully towards people or new situations. Cats can also be genetically predisposed to being fearful.

Why Do Cats Hide

How To Get A Cat To Come Out Of Hiding?

Most cats love to sneak away to quiet corners for their nap time, which, lets face it, can take up most of your cats day! However, there may be other reasons for your cats seemingly reclusive behavior, which could simply be shyness or something more major, such as medical problems.

If you have any concerns about your cat, give your vet a call and talk about what you have been seeing. Your vet will talk through your concerns about your cat hiding and will likely invite you to check over your feline friend to rule out any medical causes.


You may have adopted a cat who is naturally shy and is not yet comfortable in his new home with his new human parents. Particularly if the kitty has just recently come into your household from a neglectful or abusive situation, it may take time and patience before he is ready to bond with you and relax in his new home.

Many cat sitters report having visited homes to find usually friendly cats hiding under beds or behind bookcases. These are the cats that are extraordinarily bonded to their owners, and they feel great stress and as a result of their humans absence.

Usually, after a day or two, these kitties usually come out from hiding and readily accept affection from their caretaker.


Nap time


Stalking / hunting

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Allow Your Cat To Warm Up To Visitors

One of the primary causes of stress in cats is a change in their environments, and one big change that often induces hiding is the addition of a new person to the household.

Whether this is in the form of a temporary visitor or a permanent resident, cats are naturally inclined to assume a new person is a threat to their territory. As such, you might find your feline hiding or marking areas with her scent.

Milani says its important to give a cat time to adjust to the change and accept the new person on her own terms. The worst thing you can tell the new person to do is play nice and kissy face with the cat, she says.

Instead, short-term visitors can sit near the hiding spot and let the cat come to them, maybe coaxing her out with a treat or a toy that will boost her confidence and make her feel more like predator than prey.

Milani suggests longer-term visitors or new permanent residents rub themselves all over with a dry towel or washcloth. Then, leave the towel in the middle of the floor overnight and allow the cat to explore the scent on her own time and at her own speed.

The cat should start feeling more comfortable the next day, though if the towel has been peed on, Thats a message, and you need to keep being patient, Milani says.

How To Attract A Hiding Cat

Of course, the easiest way to attract a hiding cat is to use food and special treats. You should choose your cats favorites, such as fish, meats, and juicy gravies that are safe for cats. However, the use of bait might not work if the cat isnt hungry. If this is the case, you should try catnip.

Catnip is a minty, aromatic herb that catches the attention of felines time and time again. The herbs contain natural chemicals that seem to trigger happy neurotransmitters. This makes cats excitable and euphoric. Catnip is even known to reduce stress in cats and improve their behavior, so long as its used sparingly.

Whether your cat is hiding in the bush or under the porch, the scent of catnip is irresistible. As long as your cat catches a whiff, it will be tempted to draw nearer. You can:

  • Offer catnip in your hand.
  • Place catnip in a small bowl outside of the felines hiding spot.
  • Pack the inside of a toy with catnip, especially balls or bells designed to work as catnip puzzles.
  • Sprinkle a little catnip in a trail that leads outside of the hiding spot.

Depending on where the cat is hiding, it may not be able to smell the bait. For example, cats tucked up in trees will be too far away for a handful of catnip to work. In this case, youll need to get more creative:

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How To Make A Cat Hideaway

Cats love having small spaces to hide and get away from it all, as it helps them to feel calm and secure. If you have a slightly nervous cat, this could be the perfect refuge for them.

Watch our video to find out how you can make a hideaway for your cat using an old t-shirt and a box.

If you have more than one cat you will also need to make sure that there are enough options to prevent the more assertive cat from taking up all the locations and excluding the others. If you have young children, its also important to make sure your cat has places to go that arent accessible by them.

All cats, irrespective of their age, benefit from having somewhere safe and secure to go when they feel the need, and an elderly cat will be no exception. Older cats can suffer from stiff and painful joints and jumping up onto high places can become difficult or even impossible.

Make sure that several ground level places are available and if possible, provide some gradual steps up to their usual high place, just so that they have the choice.

Reason #: Anxious And Bored

How To Coax A Scared Cat Out Of Hiding

As you look at different reasons for why an adopted cat wont come out of hiding, it will generally come down to anxiety.

A cats natural reaction is to become anxious when they lose their sense of security. A new location with new people will become a lot for the cat to handle at first.

This is why you have to stay patient and let the adopted cat understand whats going on and what the house has to offer. They will eventually begin to open up and spend time in the common area of the house such as the living room.

There is real value in taking the time to invest in a good cat scratching post with an anxious cat.

The benefits include:

  • Building a Relationship With Your Adopted Cat
  • Giving the Cat Something to Do
  • Creating a Safe Pattern for the Cat to Follow

When your cat starts to lose a bit of its anxiety, the feeling can sometimes get replaced by boredom and that is something you can control.

There is no reason to assume a cat will stay happy after it has opened up to you. They need something to do at home and that can involve a cat scratching post or even a simple set of cat toys to play with.

Focus on this and the results will come as intended.

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Shake A Bag Of Treats

Do you guys remember the cat treats commercial, Temptations, where the guy shakes the bag of treats and the cat jumps 2 stories and does backflips for those treats?

Sorry to burst your bubble, but thats not going to happen. But, what does work is if you associate a particular sound to the cats getting treats. Yes, shaking a bag of treats does work. Its an easy sound to associate for your cats ears.

So, when your cat knows that shaking a bag means treat time, then this could help your cat come out of hiding.

Why Wont My Shy Cat Come Out Of Hiding

Why is it that cats hide when in a new home? Maybe you just adopted a cat you were told was friendly, or youve moved to a new location with your cat. Either way, your cat is confused by the new sights and smells around them.

Cats identify each other with their sense of smell, so it makes sense that they would identify other things this way. If your new home smells completely different, thats a big deal to Miss Kitty. The unfamiliar is considered dangerous until proven otherwise, so how can you ease your cat into this transition?

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Above All Be Kind Be Gentle

What helped me the most in helping my shy cat come out of her shell was patience and kindness.

Here are a few rules of thumb for being patient/kind:

  • Never force your cat to do anything they dont want to do
  • NEVER yell or react in anger, even when they do something naughty
  • Use positive reinforcement to train your cat
  • Exercise a gentle touch, and only do it when your cat wants to be touched
  • Give them their own space that they can be comfortable in and respect that space
  • Tell them that you love them cats may not understand your words, but they know the feeling youre trying to communicate CATS FEEL LOVE!

Do you have a shy cat? How have these tips helped your shy cat come out of her shell? Do you have any tips for others? Leave a comment below and start a conversation!

Cat Hiding And Cats In New Homes

5 Tips on How to Get Kittens to Come Out of Hiding ...

When bringing newly-adopted cats home, they often use a form of Bradshaws math. The standard advice to prevent cat hiding is to set up a small room like a bathroom or utility closet and make sure that room has all the cats essentials like food, water and a litter box.

Then, leave the cat alone in the room and let her get accustomed to part of her new environment at her own pace. But if you peek in, youll often see the cat hiding somewhere within the room itself, too.

With my cat, Mimosa, she took up a hiding position under the sink cabinet presumably to try and achieve Bradshaws goal of safely boxing herself in as much as possible while still being able to spot any advancing intruders.

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Spend Time With Your Kitten

While your kitten should have some me-time to adjust to their new home, it doesnt mean they should be alone all time.

They will never be comfortable around you if you only come to give them food and clean the litter box.

Make sure that you spend time with the kitten every day.

You can talk to them so that they can get used to your voice or sit as close as possible when they eat.

Eventually, the kitten is going to come closer to you to check you out. Then you might attempt to pet your kitty and give them something delicious.

Ingenious Ways To Get Your Pet Cat Out Of Hiding

Cats are one of the most common pets in most households in America. They evoke the same emotions from their owners and beholders; empathy. Their cute behavior is especially loved by many. Behaviors include playfulness and concealment.

If you are a cat owner, then you most probably have gotten into a situation whereby your cat hid and would not budge despite your familiar voice or tricks. You might have also gotten angry and abandoned the whole encounter altogether.

There are many reasons why your cat would conceal itself. However, a few solutions may go a long way in helping you to get your cat out of hiding. Getting your cat out of hiding involves successfully moving the cat out of its hiding spot voluntarily.

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Is It Normal For A Cat To Hide

It is absolutely normal for cats to hideunder the bed, in cabinets, in the closet, under blankets, in a bag, on a shelf, and pretty much anywhere else they may deem cozy. Even well-adjusted cats like safe places to relax and these popular places provide many feline creature comforts such as warmth, quiet, safety, and even a good vantage point for quiet contemplation of lifeor potential pouncing.

How To Get Your Cat To Come Out Of Hiding

How to Deal w/ Cat That’s Always Hiding | Cat Care

The reason why your cat might be hiding is because he/she is stressed, anxious, sick or simply ;bothered. These are 11 proven methods that work for me. The 11 ways on how to get your cat to come out of hiding are:

  • Play meow sounds
  • Train them to know their name
  • Sound of food
  • Give them time and space to come out on their own
  • Dont pick them up
  • Get vertical
  • Whistling
  • Throw a treat closer and closer to you

Lets dive deeper into each one so you can try these at home, but first, lets understand why your cat is hiding.

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Think About Hiding Triggers And Remove Them

If youve given your pet lots of time to come out but they remain reluctant to leave their hiding spot, consider other triggers that might be upsetting your cat.

Think about what could be triggering their hiding and try to eliminate it. What might they be uncertain about in their new situation? Do you have lots of people in the house, loud guests, or young children who may be making your kitty nervous? Even loud appliances, or unusual smells and sounds could be enough to worry your pet.

Do Cats Hide When They Are Sick

It is very common for cats to hide when they are sick. While humans tend to want some TLC when were sick, cats are the opposite. Although cats are predators, in nature larger predators will prey upon them. Since sick or old animals make an easy target, any obvious sign of illness will alert other predators that the animal is ill. Therefore, cats have evolved to hide signs of illness and pain, note the experts at VCA animal hospitals.

This makes it easy to understand why it is hard to tell if a cat is sick. Common indicators that your cat isnt feeling well include lethargy, loss of appetite, and hiding. If your kitty tucks in somewhere, is sleeping more than usual, not eating, and refuses to come out, youll want to get her to the vet to find out what is going on.

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