Cat Behavior Problems: How To Better Root Cause Research?

Cat Behavior Problems: Living together with cats is a lot of fun. Sometimes, however, the kittens show severe behavioral problems! Let’s start a root cause research!

They become dirty, bite their owner or start nibbling on their tail. We need to create a root cause research; if we find the reason for the behavioral problems, this can usually get treated well.

See Also: Why Do Cats Sleep So Much?

Common Behavioral Problems In Cats

Uncleanliness is one of the cats’ most common behavioral problems, and we can express it differently.

Some cats mark specific points in the house; others suddenly stop looking for the litter box.

Common Behavioral Problems In Cats
Cat Behavior Problems: Common Behavioral Problems In Cats / Image Credit: Susanne Nilsson – Flickr

Another common problem is that the cat becomes aggressive, bites its owner, or hits its legs and paws as it moves.

Especially in households with small children, aggressive behavior can be dangerous. Other cats hurt themselves, nibbling on their tail or their paws.

Some behaviors that we see as a problem by humans are part of the cat’s natural behavioral repertoire.

These include, for example, urine marking or scraping on wallpaper and furniture. Cats mark their territory in this way and send out signals to conspecifics.

In the household, however, these behaviors are undesirable. With a bit of patience, these behaviors of the cat can be getting changed.

Real behavioral problems occur when the cat injures itself or others or harms its social network, such as suddenly responding aggressively to its fellow roommates.

Cat Behavioral Problems: Find The Causes

If the cat shows behavioral problems, we must first conduct the cause research. In case of sudden un-cleanliness, aggressiveness, or self-injurious behavior, the first way should lead to the veterinarian.

Frequently, organic causes are responsible for the alleged wrongdoing. Medical treatment often brings improvement.

Behavioral Problems Find The Causes
Cat Behavior Problems: Behavioral Problems Find The Causes / Image Credit: 游 焰熾 – Flickr

Sometimes cats have to “unlearn” the misconduct, but they may need additional behavioral therapy.
If organic causes are getting excluded, we must analyze the life situation of the cat.

Through conspicuous behavior, cats often express that they bother something in their immediate environment.

Has anything changed recently?

Was new furniture purchased, were there any offspring, or were the litter boxes changed over?

Humans can immediately recognize not all changes.

Perhaps a new cat has moved into the neighborhood, making its babe dispute the area.

Maybe a cat feels uncomfortable in a pure housing attitude and expresses these behavioral problems.

Cat Behavioral Problems Due To Premature Separation From The Mother

We can outline many behavioral problems back to incorrectly learned behavior during kitten time.

Kittens separated too early from their mother can often not learn proper cat behavior.

Cat Behavior Problems: Behavioral Problems Due To Premature Separation From The Mother
Behavioral Problems Due To Premature Separation From The Mother / Image Credit: Anderson Carlos Bueno dos Santos – Flickr

It is especially true when they grow up in isolation. Often cats play too aggressively, biting and scratching.

Are the kittens still tiny? It looks cute on many people, and cat owners often unconsciously reinforce the misconduct.

Once the cat is grown and can bite powerfully, the once cute beast becomes a dangerous behavioral problem.

We can prevent behavioral cat problems: kittens should be allowed to stay with their mother and siblings for at least 12 weeks, better still, 14 or 16 weeks.

During this time, the little kittens learn essential rules of behavior.

If they are too restless or intrusive, the cat’s mother quickly puts them in their place. When playing with the siblings, the kitten learns how far they can go in the fight.

Cat Behavioral Problems In A Multi-Cat Household

Loneliness is another common cause of behavioral problems in cats. Contrary to popular belief, the velvet paws are not loners.

Not only kittens but also adult cats should be able to live together with conspecifics.

Cat Behavior Problems: Behavioral Problems In A Multi-Cat Household
Behavioral Problems In A Multi-Cat Household / Image Credit: Jennifer C. – Flickr

However, life in the multi-cat household can put a cat or cat under stress. It happens, for example, when too many animals live together in a small space.

Maybe the cats living in the household just do not fit together. Because cats can not suffer, it starts bullying.

Cats are after their conspecific, do not let him in the litter box or expel him from resting places.

Cat bullying can be so subtle that people only notice it when the annoyed cat shows behavioral problems.

We Can treat most Cat Behavioral Problems.

Once we find the causes of behavioral problems, it’s time for therapy. Very important: People should never punish cats for their wrongdoing.

Cats express behavioral problems that make them feel unwell and under stress anyway. Punishment only increases the pressure and scares the animal besides.

Cat Behavior Problems: Most Behavioral Problems Can Be Treated
Most Behavioral Problems Can Be Treated / Image Credit: Bartlettbee – Flickr

The therapy always depends on the cause of the unwanted behavior.

In the case of dirtiness, it can often help set up more litter boxes, try a new cat litter, or put the toilets in a different, calmer place.

If there has been a significant change, more attention can boost the cat’s self-esteem. Some aggressive animals feel under-challenged and need more animal welfare.

Rewarding desirable behaviors is an essential part of the therapy.

Also, people need patience and understanding for their four-legged friends. It may take some time until we find the trigger for unwanted behavior.

It can take several weeks for a therapeutic approach to be successful. Sometimes different methods have to be tried out until the cat feels well again.

The faster cat owners respond to behavioral problems, the better they can be treated.

FAQ Cat Behavior Problems

Should we punish unclean cats?

Do not punish unclean cats! All this can make the cat feel uncomfortable and insecure and react to it. The animal often becomes unclean, urinating next to the litter tray, in shoes or pillows. People are often helpless, do not understand this, and act wrongly out of ignorance. Some owners shake their animals or pull the cat with their noses through the puddle of urine. It is supposed to help as an educational measure, but it only worsens. The animal is even more insecure and frightened, increasing the problems.

Can cat mobbing lead to a problem?

If several animals live in the same household, the problem can also be bullying. We often only notice it when a cat becomes unclean or aggressive, and we usually observe that the animals cannot stand each other. They visit humans and cats at home and look at the living conditions. The view from the outside helps because I see things that the owner does not understand.

What to do about the behavioral problems of the cat?

More attention can help. With a baby or a new partner as a cause, sometimes more attention to the cat can help. The faster you intervene, we can treat them better and quicker a problem behavior.

Is tail nibbling a behavioral disorder in the cat?

Tail nibbling is a behavioral disorder. There is a difference between behavioral disorders and behavioral problems. The first category includes, for example, continually chasing their tail or nibbling and sucking it. It can lead to inflammation and damage so that in the worst case, part of the tail may have to be amputated.


A single behavioral factor was usually not a reliable indicator for the diagnosis, and more critical seemed to be the social environment of the cat as a whole. It includes an interaction of the number of cats in the household, the cat’s attachment to the pet owner, and the cat’s temperament.

However, the presence of a cat flap can also significantly impact the social environment. The physical conditions in the background, on the other hand, play a minor role.

In most cases, unclean cats are unhappy cats or cats whose safety is compromised. Please never spy your cat in its excrements with your nose, and doing so would significantly worsen the problem.

You should not simply punish a behaviorally disturbed animal but instead, ask yourself what you might have done wrong. The causes are almost always found in ourselves and not in the animal!

The best health advice for your cat will give to you by your vet. Ask them about Cat Behavior Problems and How To Prevent and Help Them.

See Also: Ultimate Guide To Cat Spraying and Urine Marking


Last Updated on 29/04/2022 by Buzz This Viral