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Why Is My Cat Biting My Legs? (Can I Stop It?)

If your cat is biting your legs you may be wondering why and how you can stop it from happening in the future (Click here to see my best solution for prevention, on Amazon #Ad).

Why is my cat biting my legs?

Your cat is biting your legs for one of three reasons: Expressing dominance, especially with male cats. A substitute for meowing, basically needing your attention, or a lack of stimulation. The challenge is working out which one it is.

What you will need to distract and treat cat bites

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01. Cat scratching post (My Best)
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5 stars
02. Cat puzzle toy
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03. Antibiotic Ointment
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4 stars

Now that you know why your cat is biting your legs you may be wondering if your cat is trying to hurt you, if she understands that your skin is fragile, or, how you should treat these bites, right? Keep reading for these answers, and so much more.

3 Reasons cats bite legs?

As discussed, there are several reasons as to why a cat may be biting your legs:

01. Dominance

In some cases, it will be a show of dominance. They want to let you know ‘who is boss’. This isn’t as common when they bite humans, particularly humans that feed them, but it could happen.

You will know that it is a fight for dominance (Click here if your cat peed while fighting) if it is really hard and it almost seems as if they are trying to break your skin.

They may also bite your leg if you have done something wrong. For example; if you startled them, or you accidentally stood on them. You will probably know if this is the case.

02. A Substitute for Meowing

Some cats use bites as a replacement for meowing. If you are not giving them enough attention, then you will need to interact with them. These bites will be quite ‘light’. You may not even feel them.

This will often happen if you have not paid attention to them for a while. In some cases, they may be trying to tell you that something is wrong.

This may mean that they do not have enough food or water, or perhaps they have lost one of their toys. They may even be telling you that they are in pain or feeling sick. However, it is almost certainly because they want you to pet or stroke them.

03. Lack of stimulation

Finally; they may not be stimulated enough. They may be using your legs as a toy. Yes. This may even be the case if they have a lot of toys.

Sometimes they need something more stimulating for their minds e.g. scratching posts (Click here to see the price, on Amazon #Ad), or even cat puzzle toys (Click here to see the price, on Amazon #Ad). You may find that basic stuffed toys or toys with squeakers are not going to be enough to provide them with the stimulation that they need.

Is my cat trying to hurt my legs?

Your cat is unlikely to want to hurt you. They will only want to hurt you if it is a display of dominance, and this is going to be incredibly rare. Most of the time, they just want to catch your attention. You will know if they want to hurt you. The bite will be hard, and they probably will not do it once (unless you startled them!)

What can I do to stop my cat from biting my legs?

The first thing you will need to do is work out why they are biting you in the first place. It will become so much easier to deal with.

In most cases, it will probably be because they are not stimulated enough. This means that you may want to provide them with some more toys to play with. You could even purchase a second cat.

Give your cat attention

If they are looking for your attention, then give it to them. In many cases, a cat will need nothing more than to be petted or spoken to. Although, you may not want to give in to it every time, otherwise your cat will never stop biting your legs. They do need to know that they are not being rewarded for bad behavior.

Show your cat some direction

If your cat seems to be biting due to dominance, or in a slightly more aggressive way, then you will want to give them some sort of ‘punishment’, albeit not an aggressive one.

Some people will put the cat into a separate room, just so they know that they are not being rewarded for biting you. This is a technique that often works best with kittens, and they tend to learn fairly quickly that there are consequences to their actions.

Do cats understand that your skin is fragile?

Once they have bitten you once, and it has broken the skin, they will start to realize that your skin is not going to be as tough as theirs. This means that if they are just playing with you, they will be likely to ‘tone down’ the intensity of their bite.

Should you punish your cat for biting your legs?

Why is my cat biting my legs?

Why is my cat biting my legs?

You should never offer any sort of physical punishment to get your cat from biting your legs. It is better to use other options, otherwise, you will just end up teaching your cat to be more aggressive or to never display their ‘feelings’.

Remember; your cat won’t know that they are hurting you unless you tell them that they are hurting you. Do not aggressively do this, though. That will just make the problem worse, particularly if the cat is trying to injure you in a display of dominance.

What if none of these tactics work?

If your cat doesn’t stop biting, then you should go to a vet. They can check for any health issues. There may also be a pet training class in your local area that will provide you with guidance for training your cat to stop biting.

In almost all cases, the methods we discussed will work when training your cat not to bite. It may be slow with some cats, but it will happen eventually.

Can having more than one cat help you?

Having more than one cat can help. Especially if the main reason the cat is biting you is due to boredom or because they do not have enough attention from you. Many people forget this, but cats are very sociable creatures. They need that social interaction, and having a second cat is perfect for this.

What if your cat is also acting aggressively?

If your cat is acting aggressively and they have not done so in the past, then it is important to talk to a vet. There could be an underlying health issue that could be causing them to act out like this. If that is ruled out, then there will be pet training classes that you can attend that can teach you how to train your cat, or to curb their aggressive behavior.

How should you treat a cat bite?

If your cat bites you and it breaks the skin, then wash the area right away. Using soap and water should be fine here. You can then apply anti-bacterial cream (Click here to see the price, on Amazon #Ad).

This is all going to be especially important if your cat is an ‘outdoor cat’. You never know what the cat has bitten into. There will be all sorts of bacteria in their mouth.

If the bite is particularly serious, then you may need to head to a doctor, especially if the area starts to show signs of an infection.

The dangers of allowing your cat to play with your legs or toes

If you do not stop your cat from playing with your legs and toes, then you are teaching them that it is fine to do. This means that they will likely do it with everybody. At that point, it can be tough to stop.

You may be fine with your cat playing with your legs, toes, and hands. However, not everybody will be fine with it.

You will also need a bit of a break from your cats on occasion too. This means that you probably don’t want your cat to use you as a toy. It can be incredibly annoying.

Lindsey Browlingdon
 

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