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Cats follow people around for a variety of reasons. Following behavior is completely normal in cats, especially when they have a close bond with their human. When your cat is following you everywhere you go, it’s likely because they love and trust you, and want to be around you. Your cat’s world is much more limited than yours, and you play a huge part in it! Cats can also have reasons for following you that are as unique as their personality.

Cats Are Curious

Cats are naturally curious creatures, because their instinct is to explore their environment to discover potential prey and predators. Cats want to know what’s going on, especially if you’re doing something new. So when your cat follows you around, they often just want to see what you’re up to!

Your Cat Wants Attention

While you may have an occupation, a social life and other activities that take you outside the home, your cat mostly stays at home waiting for you. When you’re there, they want your attention, and some cats need more attention than others. Be sure to make time to play with your cat every day, even when you’re busy.

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Your Cat Wants Food

Is it mealtime? Cats follow routines, and if your cat follows you more during certain times of day, they could just be excited for you to feed them. If your cat only follows you when you’re headed to the kitchen, check if they need food or fresh water.

Cats Get Bored

Sometimes cats follow people because they’re bored and don’t have anything else to do. Make sure to give your cat affection regularly and provide plenty of enrichment activities for your cat such as toys, outdoor time, or a perch by the window.

Cats Are Territorial

Cats don’t like it when part of their domain (aka your home) is blocked off. If your cat follows you to the bathroom, it’s probably because they want to make sure you don’t close the door and remove access to part of their territory.

Cats Can Have Separation Anxiety

Just like dogs, some cats get separation anxiety and feel anxious or uncomfortable when they don’t know where you are or when you’ll be back. Cat separation anxiety can lead to following you around everywhere while you’re home, and other clingy behavior. Learn more about managing anxiety in cats.

orange cat with chicken dinner morsels

Why Does My Cat Follow FAQ

The general explanations for cats’ following behavior are straightforward. But many cat parents wonder about the specific way their cat follows them around, and what it means. Just like cats, the reasons can be mysterious, but there are some common points to consider.

Why does my cat follow me but no one else?

Cats can form strong attachments to humans. If you have multiple members of your family but the cat only follows you, it means you’re their favorite human. It also means your cat has identified you as the primary source of food, affection, security, and other resources. 

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Why does my cat follow me everywhere and sleep with me?

If your cat follows you and even sleeps with you it’s a clear sign of trust and affection. Your cat might also feel more secure sleeping near you. In the wild, sleeping near a larger family member means you’re better protected against predators.  

And just like humans, cats might prefer sleeping with you just to stay extra warm and cozy! If your cat sleeps in your bed, make sure they’re always up to date on dewormer treatments so parasite eggs don’t transfer to your bedding.

Why does my cat follow me everywhere, but won’t cuddle?

Your cat has their reasons for following you, but that doesn’t automatically mean your cat wants physical affection.

Every cat is unique. If your cat doesn’t like to cuddle it could just be a personality trait. It’s also possible they weren’t socialized as a kitten, or they could’ve had negative experiences before you adopted them. You can work with a cat behaviorist to help your cat get more comfortable with being touched.

Why does my cat follow me around & bite me?

There are many potential reasons why your cat bites you. Sometimes when cats follow and bite they’re acting out natural hunting instincts and directing them at you because you’re there. Sometimes biting is part of playful behavior (like when your cat stalks & pounces on a toy) and they’re trying to get you to play with them. 

If it’s gentle biting, it could be expression of affection, as when cats gently bite fur while grooming. 

Why is my cat following the dog around?

Cats follow dogs for the same reasons they follow people. Your cat might share a bond with your dog, they could be bored or curious, they might be looking for opportunities to snag a snack if the dog finds food, or they might feel safer around the dog and see it as a protector.

As long as your dog and cat are generally getting along and your dog doesn’t seem bothered by the following behavior, it’s nothing to worry about. But if you have multiple pets you should always make sure each animal has their own space to retreat to, their own food bowl, and their own toys.

My cat follows me & stares at me

When a cat holds eye contact with you it’s typically a positive sign that your cat feels closely bonded with you. Did you know that a slow blink, an unblinking stare, and the state of your cat’s pupils can all communicate different things? Learn about cat facial expressions and body language for more insights into staring behavior.

My cat keeps following me & meowing

Following you while meowing  means your cat probably wants your attention, or possibly food. If you normally respond to your cat’s meowing by giving them attention, they’ll keep doing it. You should give your cat plenty of attention every day, but if you want them to stop meowing so much you’ll need to respond in a consistent way: give your cat attention (affection, playtime, a treat) when they’re being quiet, and withhold attention when they meow.

However, constant meowing could be a sign of anxiety, fear, illness, or a complaint (have you cleaned the litter box lately?). If your cat’s meowing is new, excessive, or doesn’t sound normal for them, take them to the vet for a wellness check to rule out potential underlying medical issues.

My cat is suddenly following me everywhere

If your cat suddenly starts following you everywhere, it could be from a recent event that made your cat feel stressed, and they feel safer and more secure by following you. Things like a change of routine, someone moving in or out of the house, a new pet, or construction starting outside your house are examples of things that could make your cat start following you around. 

If you can’t find a potential cause for the sudden change in behavior, it’s possible your cat is ill or injured and you should get them checked out by a vet to make sure.

Learn more about your cat’s unique behavior

When it comes to cats, there’s never a single answer to why they act the way they do. If you’re fascinated by weird and wonderful cat behavior, learn more about why cats knead, and why cats purr.

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