If your cat claws you often, this post will show you likely reasons why and what you can do about them.

So, why does my cat claw me? Likely reasons why your cat claws you are that it is kneading and showing pleasure, it does not like how you are petting it, intimidation or that it is playing.

There are a number of different possible reasons why your cat claws you and it might be due to a combination of reasons. However, there are some things you can consider to help figure out the main cause and there are some things you can do about it.

Why does my cat claw me?

Below are a number of possible reasons why your cat claws you and what would make each of them more likely.

It is kneading

When cats are happy, they will often start patting their paws up and down with their claws extended. If your cat has been clawing you while it is sitting on you and showing pleasure by doing things such as purring, it would be likely that your cat is clawing you because it is kneading and showing pleasure.

It does not like how you are petting it

If your cat claws you when you are petting it, the cause could be that your cat wants you to stop petting it the way you are. This would be more likely if it also tries to move away from you, it scratches, it flicks its tail and if it hisses.

Intimidation

The reason might also be that your cat feels intimidated. This would be more likely if your cat does it when you are touching your cat in a forceful manner, your cat seems to pull away from you and if it also scratches, or hisses. In this case, it might be the case that you are not being gentle enough or you are approaching it too boldly.

It is playing

The reason why your cat does it might be that it is just playing. This would be more likely if your cat does it when you are walking or when you are moving your legs while sat down.

Things to consider about your cat clawing you

Below are things to consider to help figure out the main reason why your cat has been clawing you.

If your cat always clawed you

If your cat has not always clawed you, it would help to consider what else happened when it first started doing it. If it started doing it suddenly, it could be due to things such as a change in how you interact with it or because it became more comfortable with you and it started kneading.

What is different when your cat does not claw you

If your cat tends to claw you at a certain time, it would also help to consider the timing of when your cat claws you. For example, if your cat claws you when you are walking past, the cause could be that it is playing or that it is intimidated.

The body language it shows

It would also help to consider the body language your cat shows when it claws you. If it does things such as flick its tail, hiss or scratch, it would be more likely that it is intimidated or it wants you to stop petting it. Whereas, if it does things such as purr and pat its paws up and down, it would be more likely that it is kneading.

What to do about your cat clawing you

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

Give it something else to claw on

One option would be to give your cat toys that it can be distracted by or other things for it to claw on, such as a scratch post, so that it is less likely to claw you.

Pet it differently

If your cat has been clawing you when you pet it, it could also help to pet your cat in a different manner. Generally, you will find that cats prefer to have their chins rubbed instead of getting a full backrub. It would also help to observe its body language and stop touching it when it stops purring or starts to flick its tail.

Get it to sit beside you instead

If your cat claws you when you are sat down, one option would be to get your cat to sit somewhere else. One way to do so would be to put a cat bed somewhere for it to lay down in or to get it to sit next to you instead of on top of you.

Why does my cat claw me when I pet it?

If your cat claws you when you pet it, the cause could be that it is kneading or that it is trying to get you to stop petting it or to pet it differently. It would help to consider the body language your cat shows when it does it.

Why does my cat claw me when I stop petting it?

The reason why your cat claws you when you stop petting it could be that it does not want you to stop petting it, it is playing, it does not want you to leave due to separation anxiety or that it is actually intimidated. It would help to consider the body language it shows and the timing.

Why does my cat claw me when I walk by?

If your cat claws you when you walk by, the cause could be that it is playing or that it is intimidated.

Why does my cat claw me and purr?

If your cat claws you and purrs while patting its paws up and down, the cause could be that it is kneading and showing pleasure. It might also be the case that your cat is telling you that it wants you to pet it differently.

Why does my cat claw me when I sleep?

If your cat claws you while you sleep, it could be the case that it is kneading, trying to wake you up to feed it or that it is playing.

Why does my cat claw me for no reason?

If your cat claws you for no apparent reason, it could be due to intimidation, it does not like how you are interacting with it or that it is playing.

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.