Have you ever experienced your cat hugging your arm and biting you? I have done it several times. You may be surprised by your cat’s unusual behavior. Sometimes, you will be disturbed and worried, thinking of it as a problem.
In the beginning, I was a bit tense about why my cat hugged my arm and bit me. Then, I researched it and consulted with a pet behaviorist. Now I know the reasons why my cat hugs my arm and bites me. It’s nothing serious and not harmful. I’m sharing with you the 7 common reasons for this behavior of our beloved cats.
1. They Want Your Closeness & Physical Contact
Cats are social animals, and they crave affection from you. Sometimes, they hug your arm and bite you gently to show their love and appreciation. They are very emotional, and it may be their way of love. Besides, this is also a way of marking you as their territory and letting other cats know that you belong to them. For this reason, they want to be close to you, and they want your physical contact. You can reciprocate their affection by petting them softly and speaking to them in a soothing voice.
2. Trying to Paly with you
Another reason your cat may hug your arm and bite you is that they are trying to play with you. Cats are natural predators, and they enjoy hunting and chasing their prey. This is play for them. Your arm may look like a fun toy to them, and they may pounce on it and bite it as part of their play behavior.
They may also do this to get your attention and invite you to join them in their fun. You can respond by engaging them in some interactive games with toys, such as a feather wand, a laser pointer, or a ball.
3. See Your Arm as a Fun Toy to Chase and Bite
Sometimes, your cat may hug your arm and bite you because they see your arm as a fun toy to chase and bite. This may happen when you move your arm around, such as typing on your laptop, reading a book, or eating a snack.
Your cat may think your arm is a moving object they can catch and attack. They may also do this out of boredom or curiosity. Sometimes, they feel bored with scratching posts, cat trees, puzzle toys, and catnip. Then they may play with your arm.
4. Your Cat May Be Overexcited
Your cat may also hug your arm and bite you because they are overexcited. This may happen when you are playing with them too roughly or too long. It can also occur when they are exposed to something that triggers their arousal, such as a bird outside the window, a loud noise, or a new smell.
Besides, they may lose control of their bite inhibition and bite you harder than they intend to when your cat is overexcited. Then, it would be best to calm them down by stopping the play session, giving them a time-out, or distracting them with a treat or a toy.
5. Teething or Chewing Habit
If your cat is still a kitten, they may hug your arm and bite you because they are teething. Teething is normal when your kitten’s baby teeth fall out, and their adult teeth grow. This can cause discomfort and pain in their gums, and they may chew on your arm to relieve it.
Moreover, your adult cat may hug your arm and bite you because they have a chewing habit. Your cat may develop a chewing habit due to stress, anxiety, boredom, or dental problems. They may chew on your arm or other objects to cope with their emotions or to satisfy their oral needs. I found that my cat was in this problem, and then I took the necessary steps to solve it.
6. Cats May Hug and Bite as a Sign of Trust and Comfort
Another possible reason your cat may hug your arm and bite you is that they express their trust and comfort with you. This seems wired, but it’s to us, not them. Cats are very selective about whom they show their vulnerability, and they may hug and bite you to let you know that they feel safe and relaxed with you.
Additionally, they may also do this as a form of grooming. It is a sign of friendship and bonding among cats. You can appreciate their gesture by giving them a gentle hug and praising them for being a good kitty.
7. Sometimes, It Is a Sign of Hunting
Your cat may hug your arm and bite you because they display their hunting instincts. Instinctively, they may act like this. It’s very natural. Cats are born hunters and have a natural urge to wiggle, stalk, chase, and catch their prey. Your arm may resemble a small animal to them, and they may hug and bite it to practice their hunting skills.
They may also do this to show you their catch and share their meal with you. You can acknowledge their gift by thanking them and offering them food or treats.
You may probably find why your cat may hug your arm and bite you. I have realized that they are very obsessed with us and this behavior can signify affection, playfulness, excitement, teething, chewing, trust, comfort, or hunting. Besides, this behavior is not necessarily bad as long as it is not too aggressive or frequent.
However, if you are worried about this problem or if it causes you pain or discomfort, you can try some of the following tips to reduce or prevent it:
- Try the positive redirection method
- Take more time to play with your feline
- Be alert when your cat intends to hug your arm and bite you
- Distract your cat with toys or treats
- Discourage the behavior when your cat is a kitten by using a firm “no” or a loud “ouch”
- Visit the pet behaviorist if it becomes severe
Here is a request. This is not a serious issue. So, don’t be brutal with your pretty kitty. You need patience and time to prevent your cat from hugging your arm and biting you.