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Dogwood Animal Hospital

2050 Sugarloaf Parkway
Lawrenceville, Georgia 30045

Cattitude 101

March 1 2021

Does your cat sometimes surprise you by biting you as you are petting her? Does Fluffy like to pounce on your toes, kick-scratch your arm, or knock things onto the floor? Our feline pals may be small, but they certainly do have lots of attitude. A local vet goes over kitty mood swings in this article.

Love Bites

One thing that is pretty unique about cats: they may very well be the only pet that shows affection by biting. If your kitty isn’t biting hard, or if she just lightly nips you as she is purring and being petted, she’s probably just being affectionate … in her own way.

Rough Play

Fluffy has a deep-seated urge to practice her hunting skills, and she sometimes uses her humans as, well, toys. This is bad petiquette! When your cat playfully pounces on you, gently reprimand her by saying ‘No’ or ‘Put your claws away!’ Then, walk away. You can also try blowing in Fluffy’s face when she does this, or even squirting her with water. These things won’t hurt or seriously scare your pet, but they can help get the point across.


Playing is normal and healthy for kitties. True aggression is a different story, and can become a serious behavioral issue. Of course, it’s not always easy to tell the difference. If Fluffy is hissing, lashing her tail, attacking full force, and/or flattening her ears, you have an angry furball on your hands. Don’t punish her for this: that may just make her think she has to defend herself, which may make matters worse. You may want to seek assistance from your vet or a professional cat behaviorist.


If your furball is on the feisty side, she’ll definitely benefit from lots of toys and playtime. This will give your kitty a healthy outlet for any angst she feels. Plus, Fluffy will be calmer after she’s burned off her zoomies.Â

Warning Signs

While our feline buddies are known for having mood swings, drastic changes in behavior or personality can often be a sign of a medical issue. If Fluffy used to be sweet and cuddly, but is now acting aggressive and antisocial for no reason you can see, contact your vet right away. The sooner an issue is diagnosed and treated, the better!

As your local veterinary clinic, we are always here to help! Call us anytime!

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