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Why Does My Cat Huff? (Is It Annoyed With Me?)

If you have seen your cat huff at you. You may be wondering why it has done this and if this is normal behavior for cats…

Why does my cat huff?

The main reasons why a cat will huff is being annoyed about something, feeling exhausted, or sometimes if they are unable to find you. In fact, there are several reasons why they may do this but these are some of the most common reasons.

So, now you know. But, why does your cat do this when its playing? What if it does this to another cat? Could this be because its mad at you? Keep reading for these answers, and much more…

3 Top reasons a cat may huff:

Why does my cat huff?

A cat looking confused.

Earlier I explained briefly why your cat may huff. Therefore, in this section I will give you more detail on each of these reasons:

01. Annoyed

If a cat is annoyed with you, for example, you knocked it gently, but not enough to cause pain, just annoyance, it may huff. It is quite a subtle response in the scheme of things, especially when compared to other noises like hissing or even squeaking.

02. Feeling exhausted

If your cat is totally exhausted it could also huff. Maybe it had been outside for many hours and covered miles of walking/running. It may return home huffing and snorting.

03. Can’t find you

In some cases, if your cat is walking around and meowing, it may be trying to find you and been unsuccessful. In this situation, you may notice that your cat will huff in disappointment.

What is a cat’s huff?

A huff, for cats, is a sound they make similar to snorting, or puffing. It is often used by humans when they are young and unhappy with a command from their parents. For example, a child is told to tidy their room, and they will likely walk-off “huffing & puffing” in response.

For cats, it is more subtle, but can still be a response to it being annoyed, or unhappy with the result. Usually, when they huff it will be through their nose, with limited mouth movement.

Why does my cat huff at me when playing?

If your cat is huffing when it is playing it could be because it is unfit or overweight. As they play and exert themselves physically, a healthy and fit cat may pant but control its breathing shortly after.

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However, an unfit or overweight cat may take much longer to recover and start huffing as they recover their breath. If this is the case, it is worth getting it checked out with your vet to make sure there is no other underlying health issue, or if something can be done about its weight.

Why does My cat huff when I pick her up?

If your cat is huffing when you pick it up or pet it, it could be signaling to you that it is not happy with it. This huffing, in this context, is their subtle way of saying not to keep doing what you just done. If you persist with it your cat is likely to escalate its responses to something more aggressive.

This escalation could lead to it hissing, biting, or even scratching. So, take this as an early warning. Some cats like to be picked up all the time, while others are not too keen on it. It is entirely based on the individuals cats personality and needs to be taken on a case-by-case basis.

Why does my cat huff at my other cat?

If you see your cat huffing at another cat it may be because it is competing for dominance, or frustrated with it. If it’s the former this can quickly escalate to more aggressive body language such as hissing, or even scratching.

If it’s the latter, frustrated, it may just be a minor issue between two friendly cats or a male cat’s frustration because it won’t let him mate. So, you will need to look at the body language to see.

Should I be worried if my cat makes a huffing sound?

In some extreme cases a huffing sound could indicate something serious such as early symptoms of asthma. But, other times it could just be your cats response to you annoying it. If the huffing is ongoing and you fear it could be something more of a concern you should get it checked out.

If in doubt its best to get it checked out because it is asthma, or something else, the earlier your vet knows the earlier he can start looking and solutions or remedies for you.

Could this huffing sound be a hairball?

There is a possibility that a huffing sound could be misinterpreted for your cat trying to release a hairball.  If it is a hairball you should expect to see it come out within 24 hours. So, if it does not show up after that it is either a problem getting rid of it or it may not be a hairball after all.

So, if you have heard your cat making this sound and fear it is a hairball its best to consult your vet right away to see if they recommend waiting a while or bringing you cat right in to them.

Could this huffing be sexual aggression?

There is a chance that, if you see two cats huffing, it could be sexual aggression or frustration. This is more likely if it is a male and female cat that have not been neutered and still have the urge to mate.

As you may know, once a cat is neutered, they often lose the desire to mate (click here if your cat is full of energy after). So, if it is neutered, then this huffing noise could be something else.

Could your cat huff because it’s mad with you?

Often, if your cat is mad with you it will huff. This kind of huff is usually easy to detect because it will be a quick one right out of its nose with limited, or no mouth movement.

Cats can get mad at you for many reasons. For example, It could be that its food is late, you are neglecting it, or its litter box is messy. In fact, the list is endless. But, this huffing expression is reserved for minor issues. If it was serious your cat would be more aggressive.

What if your cat snorts, what does this mean?

If your cat snorts, thsi can be for several reasons. Howeevr, it is common for cats to do this by accident while they are in a hurry to devour their meal. If this is the case, ignore it is likely happy with its meal and can’t eat it fast enough.

However, if your cat is eting too fast, and it snorts like this, keep an eye on it because it can lead to it being sick. And, if that starts happeing you may have to find ways to slow it down such as using a food puzzle (Click here to see the reviews, on Amazon #Ad).

Lindsey Browlingdon