How To Help a Fearful Cat Gain Confidence? – Kitty Cats Mom

When you bring a new cat into your home, what do you expect then? You expect your cat will always be happy, adapt to everything, and you will have a good bond with her, right? Actually, every owner wants these.

But if you see, your cat always sitting in a corner, away from everyone, always showing signs of fear on her face, then? Fear is a common matter in cats.

They can be afraid of many things, one of which is strangers. Most cats are afraid to come in front of strangers. The only way to get them out of this fear is to increase their confidence.


What Makes a Cat Shy or Fearful?

Cats are usually frightened by negative attachments made in early life. They may be abused by someone else or may face a terrible accident or get emotionally traumatized. All these are one of the reasons for the fear of cats. 

Another reason for fear in their minds is the lack of socialization. If they don’t be socialized at the right age, they won’t know how to adapt to new people, new cats, or new situations which will increase their fears and can be less confident.

Symptoms of Fear in Cats:

You have to know about the symptoms of fear before you help your fearful kitty to gain confidence. Sometimes cats want to hide their fears, that’s why we may not be able to realize it. As a cat owner, it’s your responsibility to find out the reasons for your kitty’s fear and helps her to overcome it. 

Here are mentioned some signs of fear in cats by which you will understand that she is scared.

Symptoms of fear in cats:

  • Shaking or trembling.
  • Hiding in the corner.
  • Pooing outside the litter box and do some unwanted behaviors.
  • Scratching and biting, hissing and spitting.
  • Unexplained changes in eating and sleeping habits.
  • Excessive grooming, excessive vocalization, and frequent aggression.
  • Wide eyes with big pupils.
  • Tucking their tail between their legs.
  • They flatten their ears close to their head.
  • Excessive purring or meowing.
  • Running away and hiding quickly.
  • Arches their back and puffs out their fur.
  • Loss of appetite and weight gain or loss.

How to Improve a Fearful Cat’s Confidence Level:

If you want to help your cat overcome her fear and lead a cheerful life, you have to boost her confidence level and know how to shift her focus from fears by something positive. It’s not so hard to increase your cat’s confidence, just keep patience and try to give her much time. Here I have mentioned 9 best ways to help your fearful cat gain confidence:

Best Ways To Help a Fearful Cat Gain Confidence
Training Your Fearful Cat to Be Confident

Keep Her Environment Peaceful:

The first step in removing the fear from your cat’s mind is to keep the environment around her calm and peaceful. Cats usually do not like noisy places. They can’t adapt to anything as long as they are exploring everything or properly socialized.

If you play a soundbox loudly to listen to music, or if you are yelling at your cat anytime, or if your kids’ play video games at full sound in front of her, all these will have a negative effect on your cat’s and increase her fear. 

Remember that, don’t talk with your friends in the room where your cat sleeps or spends time alone. It can make her feel uncomfortable. Always try to keep the environment around her quiet. Do not interfere in her personal space and all-time talk to her politely. This will reduce the inertia of her mind.

Play With Her Best Time:

Playing is a great way to remove your cat’s fear quickly. Just 15-20 minutes of playtime every day can boost her confidence level and remove the radius of fear. Play some games with your cat that makes her run and jump such as wand toys.

Always encourage her to play. The more you encourage her, the more her confidence will increase. Through playing, you can not only help her to gain confidence but also give proper physical and mental exercise. She will get lots of entertainment as well.

Use a Calming Pheromone:

Many people think that pheromones increase the aggression of cats, but there are some pheromones that help reduce the anxiety of cats and keep them calm. If you take your cat to a new place or if lots of guests come into your home, then she is more likely to be scared and anxious. 

That time you can use pheromone diffusers or pheromone sprays skillfully which will control your cat’s anxiety and help her stay calm. By using pheromone, you will be able to remove some unwanted behavior of her like scratching, spraying urine. By keeping your cat calm and anxiety-free, you can gradually increase her confidence.

Give Her Slow Blinks:

In the cats’ world, they show their trust and affection by blinking slowly. Do you have any cat who gives you a kitty kiss or gives slow blinks at you? By doing this, she wants to explain to you how much she loves and trusts you. You can also do the same gesture to show your love and affection towards her. 

When your beloved cat sits in front of you, close your eyes slowly and keep your eyes closed for a while. Then slowly open your eyes. If your cat blinks at you in return, that means she will feel relax and realize your love. Thus, you can build her confidence level.

Give Your Cat a Personal Space:

Since cats are solitary animals, they like to spend time alone for a while. In your home, give your cat a personal space where no one disturbs and she will feel safe. Be careful not to let anyone interfere in her personal space. 

Make her bed with a blanket and also provide some food, cat tree, toys, litter box, water dish in her space. Choose a place for your cat where she can see and explore everything in your home. The more she will feel safe and comfortable, the more she will be confident.

Let Your Cat Approach You:

To remove the fear of your cat around you, let her come to you so that she can explore you or sniff your hand. Don’t push her away. As everything is new to her, you should give her an opportunity to explore you and your home to be comfortable. 

When she gets easier with everything, the inertia will go away and she will feel safe around you. Also, tell your family member and friends to let your kitty approach them. In this way, she will gradually become comfortable in front of strangers by overcoming her fear.

Give Treats And Toys:

Toys and yummy treats can soften your timid cat’s fear. Some cats love to play. So, give your cat her favorite toys and when you play with her, keep some distance.

On the other hand, you can offer some treats. Slowly go to her, put the treat in front of her and slowly move away. If she eats the treat, give her one more in the same way. Praise her every time she takes the treat and bring her to you gently.

Keep trying until she takes the treat from your hand. When she comes to you taking the treat, you can praise her by saying, what a brave cat she is. This compliment from you will make her much more confident.


Socialization is a great way to help your timid cat gain confidence. Socialization is a key to make a polite and well-behaved cat. One of the reasons your kitty is afraid of strangers or other pets is the lack of socialization. 

When she becomes free with you, then you can train her how to free with others and try to reduce her fear. It’s good to arrange some treats or rewards while socializing because these will increase her confidence level to learn something new.

Remain Calm:

Patience is the key to all happiness. If you want to decrease your cat’s fear and make her a happy and confident cat, you should keep patience and be calm. It’s no matter how much time your kitty needs to overcome her fear and adapt to everything. 

Sometimes it takes more time. If you yell at her in annoyance, treat her badly, she will be afraid of you and may even leave your home.

So, you have to stay calm and calmly explain everything to her. Some cats are naturally very anxious. Consult with your vet if her anxiety or fear does not go away after many attempts.


How can I make my scared cat more confident?

Cats are frightened when they come across unfamiliar places or strangers and this is normal. As a cat owner, it’s your responsibility to boost their confidence. Firstly give your kitty a private space and keep the environment calm. 

As cats are solitary, they like it most. Respect her opinion and try to understand her body language. Always smile and be calm when talking with her and give some treats.

Play with her every day, give rewards, and praise her when she will be able to do something positive. If you want, you can also use calming pheromone because it keeps your kitty calm in any new situation or a new place, or new people.

Why is my cat so timid and scared?

Are you bring a new cat into your home? Basically, this is the reason why your cat is scared. You, your home, your family member, and everything around your kitty are new for her. She takes some time to adapt to everything or to be comfortable. 

There is also another reason why your cat is frightened. Is your cat scared in front of strangers or other pets?  It happens due to a lack of proper socialization. If your cat is afraid to touch, maybe she has been abused by someone in the past. Identify the reasons for her fear and help her get rid of this fear.

How can I get over my fear of cats?

To get over your fear of cats, you can do several things such as:

  • Search the picture of cats on the internet and print it out. Look at the picture for a minimum of 15-20 minutes every day and try to stay calm when seeing the image.
  • See the cats video on youtube.
  • Meet a friend who has a cat and tell her about your fear so that she will help you in this matter. Watch your friend’s cat from a distance. Then try to approach her gradually. At the time of holding the cat on her nap, tell your friend to sit next to you. This will help you more to get rid of this phobia.

Can a timid cat become friendly?

Obviously, she can. A timid cat becomes friendly when you will be able to increase her confidence level and gain her trust and love. Always be calm and soothing your voice when talking with her.

Play with her every day so that she can be open with you. Find out the triggers that create fear in her mind. Give her lots of fun and entertainment and reinforce her positive behavior. And lastly, keep patience and spend much time with your kitty. Only your caring will make her more friendly and confident.

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