ExcitedCats is reader-supported. When you buy via links on our site, we may earn an affiliate commission at no extra cost to you. Learn more.

Why Does My Cat Chase Me? 8 Common Reasons

Cats are cute and adorable even when they’re chasing you, but sometimes you just want a bit of space. To help you understand if your cat’s behavior is normal, you need to figure out why they’re chasing you in the first place.

There are many potential reasons, but we highlighted the eight most common ones here. Also, while having a cat chase you is completely normal, if you don’t like the behavior, there are a few things that you can do about it.

divider-catclaw1The 8 Reasons Why Your Cat is Chasing You

1. They’re Hunting

cat hunting outdoor
Image Credit: Kapa65, Piqsels

Cats are natural hunters, and they love to hone their hunting instincts. To be clear, your cat isn’t trying to hunt and kill you when they’re chasing you. They’re just practicing, and if you ever end up with a rodent in your home, they can put that practice to good use!

But if they are practicing their hunting skills, they might decide to use their claws or teeth, and that’s not enjoyable for anyone.

thematic break

2. It’s Fun

To a cat, there’s no better way to spend the day than chasing something around. If they find that you’re a “willing” participant, they’re going to keep at it just to entertain themselves!

Do note that you don’t actually need to be willing; they just need to think that are. If you’re running away, this mimics typical cat play behavior, and they’re likely to keep doing it.

thematic break

3. They Like You

cat hunting in grass
Image Credit: SJ Duran, Shutterstock

Chasing their owner around can be a great bonding experience for a cat. If you don’t mind and they’re not hurting you, it might not be something that you want to stop.

To your cat, it’s just a way for them to play with their friend, and you might not want to object to their favorite game. Of course, if you don’t like the game, you can bond with them in different ways.

thematic break

4. They’re Scared of You

If a cat is chasing you around, it’s typically not because they don’t like you. But it is technically possible.

If your cat is scared of you and that’s why they are chasing you around, they will display a few telling markers. If their fur is standing up, this means they’re not comfortable and are on edge. If it’s like this when they’re chasing you, you might have scared them. This is especially true if you hit or yell at your cat or if your cat has had experiences with people who have done this before.

thematic break

5. They Have Poor Socialization

red tabby cat sitting alone
Image Credit: mediarney, Pixabay

Sometimes your cat is simply chasing you around because they don’t know any better! When they’re kittens, cats need to spend time around other cats to learn what they should or shouldn’t do. If your cat doesn’t get this, it can lead to behavior problems.

The good news is that while it can be a challenge, it is possible to overcome these issues with a bit of training and patience.

thematic break

6. They’re Bored

Your cats need ways to entertain themselves. If they don’t have other animals or toys that they’re interested in, they can resort to chasing you around.

To them, chasing you is both physically and mentally stimulating, which is exactly what they need. If you want the chasing to stop, you’ll need to find other ways to entertain them. Toys or another cat can be a great solution!

thematic break

7. There’s Too Much Going On

man playing cat outdoor
Image Credit: Karpova, Shutterstock

While a cat might chase you because there’s not enough going on, they can chase you for the exact opposite reason.

First, when they go into “attack mode,” it’s sometimes hard for them to turn it off. Second, they might be chasing you so you can help them out! Your cat might feel safe around you, and when there’s too much going on, they look to you for comfort.

thematic break

8. They Don’t Feel Well

When any of us aren’t feeling our best, we can get a bit moody. The same thing goes for cats and they can start acting out. Sometimes, they might try to chase you away to get more space.

If you notice them acting differently in other ways too, they might not be feeling well. If it’s something simple, like a stomach bug, they should be better in a day or two!

cat + line divider

Getting Your Cat to Stop Chasing You

If you don’t want your cat to chase you around, you’re not alone. But just because you want them to stop, that doesn’t mean they will do it on their own. Here’s what you should do to prevent your cat from chasing you.

First, spend at least 20 to 30 minutes a day playing with your cat. Break up these sessions into 10-minute intervals. This will give your cat the time and attention with you that they need.

Next, set up an environment with plenty of toys for your cat to play with. This will give them multiple options for physical and mental stimulation without resorting to chasing you around.

Once you have everything set up for them to succeed, it’s time to move on to the training portion. If your cat starts to play too rough with you, simply stand up, and walk out of the room without giving them any attention. If they chase you to another room, find a way to keep them away, ideally without picking them up and moving them.

Next, when your cat jumps out at you, don’t swat them away or try to run away. This makes them think of prey, which encourages the behavior. Instead, move toward the cat, and then don’t pay them any more attention.

Finally, avoid punishing your cat, and only reward them when they’re acting the way that they should. With enough time, your cat will stop chasing you and understand how and when they ought to play with you!

divider-catclaw1Conclusion

Cats chasing their owners is nothing new, and it will likely not stop anytime soon. But while it’s a normal behavior, you can still train your cat not to chase you, and they can be just as happy without doing it.

That said, if you enjoy the bonding activity, don’t feel like you need to train it out of them!

thematic break

Featured Image Credit: JackieLou DL, Pixabay

excitedcatssmallsfeb2022