Last updated on August 29th, 2023 at 01:04 am
Bringing a new kitty into your household might raise that question.
What’s more, we’ve all heard the horrific (but false) myth that cats smother babies in cribs because they are jealous.
However, is your cat really jealous? Keep on reading because we’re going to unravel the mystery of how your cat feels about other cats, humans, dogs, and pets.
Do cats get jealous?
Let me ask you something. How would you describe jealousy? It’s hard to find the words, right?
That’s because jealousy can be a complex emotion mixed up with a bunch of other feelings like anger, sadness, regret, or a sense of unfairness.
We think about our cats like human children, but they are not. They experience emotions differently than us.
Don’t get me wrong. Cats get jealous, but I think about it more as “possessiveness” than actual jealousy.
Why do cats get jealous?
In the wild, cats don’t live in groups or packs. They prefer to be lonely warriors, so they don’t share their territory with others unless we’re talking about mating and nursing kittens.
For domestic cats, your home is their territory and sanctuary. You’ll notice how your cat marks what she considers hers by:
In the cat’s eyes, humans are the ones providing food, petting, entertainment, and security. It’s natural for a cat to be possessive of those who take care of her.
After all, without you around who will cater to Kitty’s every whim?
In Kitty’s mind, she has somebody with whom to compete for resources (food, sleeping places, and petting, to name a few).
She feels threatened and insecure, and she would act possessively to show the other cat who is boss. What’s more, a new addition to the household means that routines change.
Cats are not fans of sudden change, and it makes them anxious and stressed. As a result, Kitty feels she has to act to protect what’s hers, or she might lose it.
Besides other cats, your feline can become jealous of new people in your life, babies, and objects, for example, phones, laptops, or books.
Since you’re so engaged in interacting with your new boyfriend, girlfriend, cat, or phone, the cat feels she is not getting all the attention she needs and acts jealously.
What are the signs of jealousy in cats?
When a cat is jealous, you’ll often observe behavior changes soon after you bring the new pet/person into your life.
- Constant demand for affection
- Cold shoulder attitude
- Aggression towards the new person or pet and acting pushy towards it
- Hiding whenever the intruder comes into the room
- Hissing, growling, and fighting
- Urinating outside of the litter box
- Spraying on the walls or furniture
- Attempts to chase away the intruder
- Acting out to attract your attention by kicking object off the table, or cuddling too close to you
- Depression and lethargy.
However, before you jump to the conclusion that your cat is jealous, take her to the vet for evaluation.
She might have a medical problem triggered by stress and anxiety.
How to deal with cat jealousy?
So, what can you do if your cats are jealous of each other?
The easiest solution is to try to spend enough time with Kitty to reassure her that everything is going to be all right.
You want to send the message that the new cat doesn’t change how you feel about Kitty and that you’re not going to forget about her. You should also:
- Introduce new cats into the household slowly.
- Try to keep your cat’s routine intact to prevent stress.
- Get enough toys and litter boxes to accommodate two cats.
- Don’t leave your cat out when you’re distributing treats.
- Keep the new pet away from your cat’s favorite sleeping places.
- Don’t let your cat see that you’re paying special attention to the new guy.
Think about Kitty as a toddler. She can’t speak, but she watches your every move.
She knows when you’re unfair to her and when another creature is getting more attention than her.
Cats do get jealous of each other and can be quite miserable when they feel ignored and unloved.
Don’t make my foolish mistake and treat your cats equally.
What do you think about the topic? What do you think about do cats get jealous? Share your story in the comments.
Olfa knows how to get things done and has a keen business sense that others admire. She’s always on the go, coming up with new ideas! Her ability to anticipate the needs of her readers and deliver information that they want is what makes CatVills such a success. She loves cuddling her cat Picaciu. He is her inspiration.