Why is my cat so lovey-dovey all of a sudden?
June 22, 2006 9:02 PM   Subscribe

Why is my cat so darn clingy these days? Is it because I'm pregnant?

Sancho, our male cat has always been sweet on me (follows me around the house all day, wants to be carried like a baby, smothers me with affection when I'm trying to sleep) but Isabella, our female cat, has always been a little standoff-ish. You know the type, "feed me and fuck off", only wants to be petted when she's in the mood, acts offended if you try to touch her without permission, etc.

However, since I've been pregnant she too now follows me around, wants to sleep next to me, constantly wants to be cuddled & petted, and even lets me carry her.

What gives? Is it phermones?
posted by echolalia67 to Pets & Animals (13 answers total) 3 users marked this as a favorite
Sounds possible.

These guys have incredible noses. They say some dogs can predict seizures in human companions.

Any big behavior changes can also be a sign of illness, so keep an eye out for symptoms, too. Is she getting regular annual checkups?
posted by overanxious ducksqueezer at 9:14 PM on June 22, 2006

It's possible that a change in your body chemistry due to the pregnancy has become appealing to your cat. However, cats are strange animals as far as behavior is concerned, and it's almost impossible to pinpoint exactly what it is that affects them.

My two cats are brothers from the same litter - one's absolutely insane (chases ghosts, etc) and the other is so docile he's a fatass even though I feed him less than the daily recommended amount. On occasion out of the blue, Tonka Butt (no, that's not really his name) decides he's going to act like Crazy Pants (also not real name) and flip out like some sort of feline ninja.. What causes it I'll never know - cats are just weird like that.

In slightly related news: Enjoy your daily dose of the latest health scare. Actually it's not all that amazingly new, but I would be more amused by the sensationalism than freaked out by the supposed (and disputed) risk.
posted by twiggy at 9:25 PM on June 22, 2006

I'll suggest something else. Women, in my limited experience, often shift their attitude about the family pet when they are pregnant. What was once cute becomes gross, and especially given all the warnings about handling cat litter, etc., is it possible you just FEEL the cat is being more "clingy" because you don't like having it "clinging" the way you used to?
posted by fourcheesemac at 10:57 PM on June 22, 2006

One of our female cats was like this when I was pregnant the first time. After the baby was born, she "adopted" my husband as her staff and shunned me. She was pissed at being displaced. She figured out what was going on when I got pregnant again and seemed a little miffed about the fact that I was bringing another one of those into the house. About two days before I went into labor, she got concerned that I wasn't preparing appropriately & she nested on my behalf.

I went into the bedroom to get dressed & found her in the closet, pulling my clothes off hangers and arranging them in, well, a nest & she got very upset when I started to shoo her, so I let her do her thing. It was a very complete nest when she was done. And none of it involved the husband's clothing. Just a good portion of mine. In the nice safe dark (way too small for me) closet. Then she went back to shunning me. It was a very sweet gesture. Three & a half years later, I think she's done shunning me again. :)
posted by susanbeeswax at 11:36 PM on June 22, 2006 [6 favorites]

I'm pretty sure the "cats-and-pregnant-women" affinity is a real phenomenon. My mother and my wife both reported the same thing; previously aloof cats became very loving and cuddly, especially enjoying curling up on the humans' growing bellies.

Once I/my son was born, the cat then wanted nothing to do with them again.

For what it's worth, with my mom it was a female (spayed) cat, and with my wife it was a male (neutered) cat.
posted by Doofus Magoo at 3:56 AM on June 23, 2006

susanbeeswax, that is the sweetest story.

echolalia67, thanks for posting this. I was kind of worried what might happen with my cats when I get pregnant and the stories here make me feel better.
posted by sugarfish at 6:17 AM on June 23, 2006

Related cat and pregnant lady story: When I was pregnant and visited my friend's house, their older, neutered cat came to cuddle against my belly. I scratched and he purred. I mean really PURRED; the loud, rumbly, drooly kind. My son shifted and rolled to be underneath the cat. It was a very comfortable sensation to have the two like that.
posted by onhazier at 6:55 AM on June 23, 2006

I'm 5 months along and experiencing the same thing with our formerly aloof male cat.
posted by justonegirl at 7:03 AM on June 23, 2006

Just checking: is your cat spayed? If she's not, it could be a sign of her going into heat.

I'm assuming the cat is spayed, I just figured it should be mentioned.
posted by jenfullmoon at 3:35 PM on June 23, 2006

is it possible you just FEEL the cat is being more "clingy" because you don't like having it "clinging" the way you used to?

Uh, no. This behavior has also been observed by my husband, as in "Hey cat, I've got a warm comfy lap too, you know...what am I, chopped liver?" As for me, I'm thoroughly enjoying the new, improved, love-monkey Izzie for as long as it lasts.

Just checking: is your cat spayed?

Yes, she is. The behavior is, however, similar to a cat in heat now that you mention it.
posted by echolalia67 at 7:24 PM on June 23, 2006

Watch out for Toxoplasmosis of course..
posted by lundman at 10:05 PM on June 23, 2006

susanbeeswax, i am ROTFL. oh man that is so cute.
posted by radioamy at 12:56 PM on June 24, 2006

I went in search of a picture of the nest, I thought I posted one in my blog at the time, but I guess not. It was a sight to behold. In my post I noted that she had managed to get my silk scarves into the mix as well (they were folded on a shelf in the closet). Our cats are such odd little creatures.
posted by susanbeeswax at 12:16 AM on June 25, 2006

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