Cats generally do whatever they like so if you find one following you–whether you’re out for a walk or just walking around your own home–the likely reason is they want something from you. But what, you ask? Well, that depends on the situation! Let’s explore some of the reasons you might find yourself being followed by a little feline shadow.
Why Do Some Cats Follow You Home When You’re Out Walking?
There can be lots of reasons why this happens. From simply finding you entertaining to needing your help.
If you are approached by, or approach, an outdoor kitty while on a walk and share some attention you may find the kitty following you simply because you showed some kindness. Generally, these types of interactions will end as soon as the kitty reaches the confines of its home rage. Once you pass over this invisible (to you) line, your new friend will likely go back to what it was doing in the area it is most comfortable.
Kitty Needs Something
If a kitty begins, and continues, following you there may be something else going on. Take a look at the general condition of the cat. If she looks a bit scraggly, she might be wondering if you have some food you can share. If he looks injured, he might well be and is wondering if you can help. If she looks like she may have kittens, she might be trying to tell you she, and they, need help.
In such situations do as much investigating as you safely can but be aware of trespassing or appearing as though you may be sneaking around someone’s home. You might even knock on a door or two to see if you can get any information about the cat. If a cat has followed you for a while, or to your front door, perhaps she has just decided that you need a cat. If this is something you can, and want, to take on it’s a good idea to pop by a local Vet’s office or animal shelter and ask to have the cat screened for a microchip. This is a great way to find out if the cat is lost or has perhaps been abandoned. As an added layer of precaution, you might check with your local shelter to see if anyone has reported a missing kitty that matches the description of your new buddy–and maybe even file a found report yourself. All of this is to save someone, including you, some heartbreak if the cat is indeed lost.
If you are truly concerned about an outdoor kitty’s welfare but can not do anything about it yourself, don’t hesitate to call either local animal control or a feral cat coalition.
There are times when you are walking outdoors and find yourself not being followed by a cat, but being stalked. Some cats don’t like trespassers in their territory and can get a bit aggressive about it–especially if you are walking a dog. If an outdoor kitty is not actively engaging you in a friendly manner, your best bet is to scoot on out of there.
Why Does My Cat Follow Me Around The House?
Again, likely because your kitty wants something from you. In many cases, this is simply your attention (ahem, “feed me”). Here are some things you can try in order to redirect your kitty’s attention away from your every move.
Your kitty is bonded with you and making time for daily play can go a long way in reinforcing that bond. Just 10 or 15 minutes of focused attention like play or brushing can put your kitty at ease.
If your cat seems to be following you around out of boredom consider creating some fun spaces where your kitty’s attention can be directed elsewhere. Cat trees with hidden toys are always an adventure. A cat tree or hammock in front of a window is even better–there’s a lot to see out there in the big world!
If your cat is very food-focused, scheduling meal times can help ease their worry about when the next meal is coming. As many cat people have experienced, cats have internal clocks that seem to operate by the second. By feeding them at regular times they will know when to expect food which can help to assuage food anxiety and, hopefully, nix the “feline follow”.
Just like people, cats can be solitary creatures but some are extremely social. If you have a single-cat household and your cat seems to enjoy company, you might consider bringing another cat into your home in order to take the focus off you as a kitty BFF.
If your cat begins following you around all of the sudden, there could be something wrong–especially if they are vocalizing a lot. They might be trying to tell you something’s not right so pay close attention and consider taking your pal to the Vet for a checkup.