Why Does My Cat Not Like To Be Picked Up?

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When it comes to establishing our love and affection for pets, most of us will choose to pick and cuddle them. But some cats don’t like to get picked up or held in your arms. Have you wondered why your cats reject this display of affection? Here is an article to explain this well.


Generally, an adult cat will have a tough time accepting a particular form of affection. Even if you are the only person they love to get snuggles, the cats have their limitations & they feel it’s unnatural. They are in a phase where they understand the difference between their beings’ physical touch and humans. Hence, they restrict themselves when you pick them up.


Secondly, when you hold the cats in your arms, generally, they feel restless. They don’t feel the freedom, and they want to move on their own. Since they feel threatened, they try to get away from you immediately.


“If the cat hates me picking them, does that mean they don’t love me?” It is one of the most depressing questions most owners ask, but it’s just a myth. You may have seen that some cats are indeed very cuddly and needy, but that does not generalize the opinion.


Hence, if you think your cat does not like it, don’t do it and let it go. Your cat will always be affectionate to you. It is also subjected to the breeds. For instance, Ragdolls and Ragamuffins are a perfect example of how they always wanted to be held and cuddled.


However, apart from being subjective, there are some actual reasons why your cats do not like to be picked up. In this article, we are going to discuss the same.


Why your cat does not like to be picked up?



Cats feel scary

Kitten especially feels the whole experience of picking up terrifying. Just like humans, even they are scared if a giant suddenly holds and picks them up. It is their personality, and you cannot do anything about it.


When you are a child, even you would have experienced the same. While walking, if randomly someone picks you without warning, you would have felt threatened. The same goes for the kittens. Although you are an owner or stranger, it’s just the experience that pushes them to come again to the ground.


Not a social type

You may consider it as a joke, but cats do not get socialized easily. They might be shy and wary around people. As adults develop, they carry this behavior. So, you may feel that they hate this action.


For these cats, the problem is with the human interactions, which is less. Hence, they feel the cuddling attempt to be dangerous. But you can change this by taking your pet cat to places where they will feel a positive experience. Otherwise, if you forcefully pick the cat, it becomes arrogant and a defendant.


Looking for some respect

There are some constant actions done by the owners. For example, some of you will pick the cat and keep them on the chair or table. These are the time’s cat does not like this action because they feel under-confident.


It’s like you doubt their climbing abilities, and hence they feel offended. They think you are helping them to do what they want. Even if you have done this out of care and affection, it hurts them badly. The simple way out is to wait until they try and climb the places.



Memories in cats are different than humans. They can realize only positive and negative events. It leaves a mark on them, which affects their behavior big time.

The difference can be seen in the adopted or rescued cats. They have a history that you possibly might not know. Some cats would have gone through something that makes them feel afraid.



For instance, the previous owner might have accidentally dropped the cat while holding it, or it would have been hurt while picking it up. Anything that predominantly had given them a bad experience is reflecting in the current behavior.


These are some of the behavioral aspects of the cats not being liked for picking them up. There are some sensual issues listed below in the table.


Why your cats hate to be picked?

Cat is undergoing pain If you think that your cat is not responding as usual while picking up, it might be due to your cat is undergoing some pain. Especially if they have a stomach ache, they do not want to pick up at all. You can ease their pain with light therapy. When you don’t know where exactly the cat is feeling hurt, light therapy will help relieve the pain. LumaSoothe is one of the best devices that can relieve inflammation, muscle, and joint pain.
It’s time for breeding Some cats do not like to be picked up when they are or about to breed.  During this time, in general, they don’t like any physical touch by humans. Especially aggressive breed cats love to keep their paws on the ground for a grip.
They want to pee When you pick up the cat immediately when it has just finished its meal, it may resist you. Cats don’t like their tummy to get pressed. Hence they will like to get on the ground as soon as possible.




We hope now you would have understood why your cat does not like to be held or picked up. Importantly, do not push this as an issue. Every cat has a unique way in which they love to be greeted or show affection. Picking them up is not the only way to do it. Especially when the cat is sick or administrated by any medication, do not ever force them.


Always respect the boundaries and let them approach you on their terms. You want your cat to be happy and safe. Hence do not force them at any cost. You can see that they are coming back to you with affection and love.

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