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​​Why Does My Cat Hide When I’m Not Home?

If you have discovered that your cat is hiding while you are away from home you may be concerned and wondering why…

Why Does My Cat Hide When I’m Not Home?

There are numerous reasons why your cat might hide when you are not home. Anxiety can induce hiding behaviors, and so can illness. Depending on your cat’s overall behavior, you may need to take your cat to the vet and see what treatment you can get for your furry feline.

So, now you know. But, is this behavior normal? When should I be concerned about them hiding? Do cats feel abandoned when you go away? Keep reading for these answers, and so much more…

2 Top reasons Why Cat’s Hide When You Are Away

A cat hiding.

A cat hiding.

Earlier, I mentioned some reasons why your cat is hiding. Therefore, in this section I will explain each one in more detail:

01. Cats Hide Because of Separation Anxiety 

One of the most common reasons your cat is hiding while you are not home is because they have separation anxiety. Separation anxiety is a behavioral problem in cats that increases their desire to have you by their side.

When you leave your home, cats get anxious. Separation anxiety is common for a kitten who has never spent time without its owner. 

Common signs of separation anxiety include:

  • Hiding when human leaves
  • Escape attempts 
  • Home and furniture soiling
  • Eating problems
  • Vomiting, diarrhea, high temperature
  • Clinginess
  • Over-excited behavior when human returns home
  • Self-isolation
  • Excessive meowing

Leaving an anxious cat at home alone often results in your cat developing resentment toward you. Cats are not ones to forget things, either. These furry felines will continue their behavior until you teach them good manners.

It is possible to decrease the anxiety of your cat with patience, love, and time.

02. Cats Hide When They Feel Sick

Hiding is a common symptom of cats feeling sick. They may seek shelter under your bed or another place that makes them feel comfortable. 

Most cats often prefer secluded, covered areas. If your cat has known medical ailments, build them a safe space to go when they are not feeling well. Stock their safe space with fresh water every day.

Is it Normal for a Cat to Hide When You are Away?

It is normal for a cat to hide when you are away from the house. Cats like to stay hidden because it makes them feel safe. Hiding is not problematic until they miss meals or show signs of illness like vomiting or diarrhea.

There are numerous reasons why your cat hides while you are away. The most common reason why your cat hides is separation anxiety. You can treat this by spending time with your cat and giving them things to keep them busy while you are gone.

When Should I be Concerned About a Cat Hiding?

A cat staring.

A cat staring.

When a cat hides for prolonged periods without eating, drinking, or using its box, it is time to get concerned. Hiding under furniture is nothing to worry about, but a cat who does not perform daily bodily functions shows signs of major health problems.

A hiding cat does not need to be sick to have medical problems. A young and healthy cat can show clear signs of medical problems through hiding. If your energetic cat suddenly starts hiding, it may need veterinary attention.

How Can You Prevent Your Cat From Hiding?

There are several ways to prevent your cat from hiding, like giving them a variety of different toys. Variety is important for cats because they can become bored easily. Forming close bonds, positive reinforcement, and providing safe spaces are other ways that you can use to prevent your cat from hiding. 

Hiding is a behavioral problem that you can prevent by forming a healthier bond with your cat. A strong bond with your cat will convince them to trust you as you come and go from your home.

Assure your cat that you will return home and provide them with things to do while you are away to occupy their time. Keeping your cat’s mind busy will prevent them from feeling neglected or abandoned when you leave them. 

Ideally, reducing your cat’s separation anxiety will prevent your cat from hiding. Reducing your cat’s anxiety is easier said than done, but there are a few methods that you can try, such as providing your cat a safe space. You may also attempt to give your cat plenty of different toys, so they have a large selection.

What is Cat Separation Anxiety?

Cat separation anxiety happens when you have been away from your cat for too long. Social or not, your cat may begin to feel neglected when you leave them alone. 

Felines do get mad. When you are away from the house, separation anxiety makes your cat feel vulnerable. Anxious cats may hide or isolate themselves until you return home.

Separation anxiety comes in the form of excessive meowing, clinginess, and the cat will often go into hiding before you leave the house. 

It is difficult to discern if your cat has separation anxiety because they may not show it. 

Do Cats Feel Abandoned When You Go on Vacation?

Cats are incredibly independent, but they may begin to worry when they are left alone. Loneliness makes cats uncomfortable.

Having a cat sitter visit your house at least once or twice a day will be beneficial to your cat’s sanity. It is best to have the same person visit and have someone come who your cat already knows.

Why Does My Adopted Cat Hide from Me?

Cats do not like change, so adopted cats may take a while to come out from hiding. Many cats hide after being adopted because they are trying to accommodate themselves to their new home.

As they get used to you, there are more likely to come out of hiding and spend time with you. Adoptive cats may also go into hiding (Click here if its ignoring you) when confronted by past events that trigger them. 

Why Does My Cat Hide in My New Home?

A cat who hides after moving into a new house may be apprehensive about the change of scenery. Time typically works its course if you just let them get used to their surroundings.

If giving your cat their time does not work, you can try to lure them out with some treats and slowly work with them. No matter what, never try to force your cat away from hiding.

Why Does My New Cat Still Hide From Me?

Many cats take longer to bond and may hide from their new owners for long periods. Adopting a cat requires patience because it can take some cats to warm up to their owners. Some feral cats and adopted cats can take months or even years to warm up to their owners. 

Bonding with a newly adopted pet requires additional effort because of the traumas of their past ownership. To form this close connection, spend additional time with your cat and give them toys that they enjoy. 

Being the one who feeds your cat is also a good way to form a closer relationship with your cat. When a cat associates you with food, it will help your relationship considerably.

Do Some Pregnant Cats Hideaway?

Pregnant cats find hiding spots before giving birth. These hiding spots can be any enclosed location inside your house that makes them feel safe. Many cats choose under the bed, or they may even escape outside and go under the house.

Mama cats hide their kittens as a protection measure. Hiding her kittens is a perfect example of your cat’s primal instincts taking over. Do not take anything personally if your mama cat hides her kittens or continues moving them to new locations.

Lindsey Browlingdon