If your cat has been acting like a dog, you might be wondering why and what you can do about it. This post will show you a number of possible causes and what you can do about it.

So, why does my cat act like a dog? Possible reasons why your cat acts like a dog are that it does it naturally because it’s beneficial for cats to help humans, it’s learned that it gets rewards when it acts that way, it’s in your cats personality, or that you cat wants something from you.

There are actually a number of possible reasons why your cat has been acting that way and it might be due to a combination of them. However, there are some things to consider when figuring out the main cause.

Why does my cat act like a dog?

Below are a number of possible reasons why your cat has been acting like a dog and what would make them more likely.

Nature

Cats used to follow humans around, eating their scraps and the rodents that followed the humans. Cats and humans learned, over time, that it is in their best interest to live alongside each other. In the wild, cats would have to fend for themselves entirely. However, by helping humans with things such as catching rodents, cats are able to benefit by getting food and shelter from humans and humans benefit from the rodents not been able to eat their food stores.

The reason why your cat sometimes acts like a dog is likely to be that it has historically benefited cats to be responsive to what humans want from them. This would be more likely to be the cause, if your cat acts like a dog by doing things such as coming to you when you call it and chasing things such as strings or small balls.

Encouraging the behavior

It might be the case that your cat has learned that it gets rewards when it behaves in a certain way. If you tend to give your cat food, when it behaves like a dog, it might have learned that behaving that way results in it getting food. This would be more likely if your cat does it in a way that gets attention from you and it watches to see if you have anything for it.

Personality

Cats can have different personalities. Some cats will just be lazy and sleep all day. While other cats will be more adventurous and playful. This would be more likely if your cat has always behaved that way and if it behaves like a dog in a way that is more playful.

It wants something from you

Another possible cause is that your cat wants something from you. This would be more likely if your cat behaves like a dog more at a certain time such as when you would normally feed it.

Things to consider about your cat acting like a dog

Below are some things to consider when figuring out why your cat has been behaving that way.

In what way does your cat act like a dog?

When trying to figure out why your cat has been doing it, it would help to consider the way in which it behaves like a dog would.

If your cat comes to you when you call it, the cause would be more likely to be that it has learned that it gets rewarded with food or treats when it comes to you.

If your cat follows you around a lot, the cause might be that it is waiting to get something from you such as food, especially if it does it more at around the same time that it normally gets food. It might also be the case that it is just being affectionate which would be more likely if it rubs itself against you.

If your cat behaves like a dog in a way that gets attention from you, the cause would be more likely to be that it wants something from you such as to be let outside or given food.

If your cat has always acted like a dog

It would also help to consider if your cat has always acted that way. If your cat has started behaving that way suddenly, it might be due to things such as a change in the time that you normally feed it or something else changing in its environment.

What else is different when your cat acts like a dog

If your cat tends to behave like a dog more at a certain time, it would also help to consider what is different about the timing. For example, if it tends to do it more when it has not been able to get food in a while, it would be more likely to be due to wanting food.

What do to about your cat acting like a dog

Below are some options you have when dealing with the behavior.

Make sure it is able to get what it wants when it needs it

If your cat seems to have been behaving that way because it wants something from you, it would help to ensure that it can get what it wants when it needs it. For example, it would help to feed it at around the same time daily and to let it outside whenever it might want to go outside.

Allow it to continue

It is not uncommon for cats to behave like dogs. If your cat has not been behaving unusually in other ways, it would likely be normal behavior. However, if your cat has started behaving that way suddenly and it has been behaving unusually in other ways as well, such as by being sick, it would help to take it to a vet.

Why does my cat mimic my dog?

If you also have a dog and your cat has been mimicking your dog, it would be likely to be because your cat has noticed that your dog gets rewarded when it behaves in a certain way.

Can a cat be like a dog?

Yes, cats can act like dogs in a number of ways. It is not unusual for cats to get your attention when they are hungry, to wait at the window to go inside or outside, and it is not unusual for cats to follow you around.

Can I train my cat to be like a dog?

If you want to train your cat to be more like a dog, it is possible to do with the use of association training. This is where you train your cat to couple a cue with a reward. For example, to train your cat to come to you when you call it, you would reward your cat with a treat and make a noise at the same time, after repeating the process, your cat should learn that coming to you when it hears the noise results in it getting a reward.

You can watch the video below to see how it is done.

Author

I created and currently run Kitty Cat Tips, the website that you can go to when you have questions about your cat's behavior. It's my hope that you find Kitty Cat Tips to be a helpful resource. It is also my hope that it will help you to improve your relationship with your cat. You can read more about me and my website here.