Adult Rehomed Cat Hissing Without Warning

by David
(Greater Manchester, UK)

My cat problems are with an 8 year old cat that I recently adopted. She had been spoilt rotten by her previous 'owners'.....it took her 2 weeks to come out of a cupboard - she would eat and prowl etc during the night - but she HAS come on leaps and bounds since then.


However when she is sitting on my lap, for no apparent reason, she will suddenly hiss at me, and take a 'swipe'...she seems VERY settled, and treats the place like it belongs to her, but I would have thought the 'hissing' etc would have stopped by now, 8 weeks later after rehoming....

I always give her plenty of 'space' and 'back off' when she does this....but I am surprised after so long it hasn't stopped...


Reply from Liz (Editor): It sounds to me like you've done a great job with her in what's really a very short space of time. Some adult cats that are rehomed will take months and months to get to this stage.

Some cats will only tolerate being petted for so long, then they'll decide they've had enough and will hiss and swipe to let you know! It's not exactly the most sociable way to get the message across, but if your cat just happens to be one of these, there's very little you'll be able to do to change it. You're better off accepting that's what she's like, learning to read the warning signs and stopping before it gets to that stage. This page gives more information:

How to Deal With Cat Aggression During Petting

However, you may well find that as she settles in more, she displays this behavior less and less, and it may eventually stop altogether.

Thank you for your question.

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