Why is My Cat Sitting Next To Me But Not On My Lap?

Affiliate Disclaimer

As an affiliate, we may earn a commission from qualifying purchases. We get commissions for purchases made through links on this website from Amazon and other third parties.

Cats are cuddly. They love to fool around and try to cover your lap space. It is a sign of confidence and trust that they have in you.  Although it might be shocking for you to know that some cats are reluctant, and even though they are affectionate, they are simply not a “Lap Cat.”

It does not mean that the cats are not friendly or social, but they are not comfortable sitting on their lap. Don’t be disappointed if your cat doesn’t like to sit on your lap because it is natural; each cat has its own unique style of loving and developing trust and affection. Here are the secrets that you may want to know about your pet cat regarding sitting on the lap.

  1. The age of bringing home

If you have welcomed your cat into your home at a complicated age, especially when she is just turning adult, then it is obvious that your feline becomes reluctant about being social with you. During this period, the cats have a high interest in running around and exploring their comfortable places around your home. Hence it’s just not your lap. But when you had already introduced them to home as a kitten, then they normally tend to be around you. And the reason behind it is simple – they miss their mother and her warmth.

The cats might feel vulnerable, and you become their trusted ally. An ideal age to bring a cat home from the adoption center is within the first two weeks. By this, you have more time for putting them into practice or routine in which you can teach them socialization. But you can’t force your kitty on a very crucial age.

  1. From the background

When you are bringing a high variety breed cat that has a background of a lot of petting and handling, then she continues to sit on your lap. But if your kitty is from a background where she is not into socialization, then she can be highly fearful of humans. Behavioral scientists call these cat types are “trapped cats” when they cannot be bonded with humans easily. It does not mean they are never going to come back to you. But it is going to take more time than usual.

Some cats become close to their pet parents in a week, others in up to a year or more. You cannot predict but give them their trust consistently. Don’t avoid them since they don’t socialize with you. They will practice socialization slowly when you show them how.

  1. Not as a fellow pet

Most pet owners might have realized that cats are not so friendly around their fellow pets at home. You might have seen this from the very first day when you brought the cat home. It is not just cats. Any other social pets, for that matter, will have a problem with you being close to your fellow pets. For instance, if you have both a dog and a cat at home, it is never going to be easy.

Cats are territorial animals where if they mark a space, they want to live up to it. They cannot simply share the space with another pet. There is no way that you may have to give up on both of them. But you need to accept that they are not going to share these lap spaces simply. Especially when there is so much emotional connection on your lap, their instincts don’t allow them.

  1. Maybe you are not handling it right

Some of the pet owners complain about their pet cats being partial, where they are ready to sit on your friend’s lap but not yours. The real-time scenario is that the cats sit on their friend’s lap because he is handling the pet in the right way. However, this is not just a matter of trust. It is also about how you handle the cat’s rights. For example, when they sit on your lap, you need to pay attention to them. You must give that warmth by snuggling or playing with them. That is how you can build trust with the cats. It is not a matter of a day; it will take time. You have to show them that you are equally okay with them being on your lap. Just because your friend does that, your cat is more comfortable with him.

Is it possible to turn the cat into a lap cat?

The answer to the question is still in the hands of the owners. There is no promise or hope that anyone can give you about the time in which they might turn into lap cats. But there are simple techniques that you may want to practice with them so that they are over on you.

Below is the table, where we will tell the reasons along with the tips you can use to turn your cat into a lap cat.


What you can do about it?

Kittens afraid of loud noises and movements
When your cat is sitting on your lap, or just next to you, you should speak softly. When your favorite TV show is coming up, or you suddenly got a call, don’t throw them away on the couch and run. Speaking loudly on the phone while having a cat on their lap may turn them anxious. Create a safe and non-threatening space for them.
Not comfortable with the sensitive touch
Learn cat pet etiquette. It is highly vital because most kittens enjoy scratches and snuggles. Although they are very sensitive to the touch, be careful when you scratch them on their delicate parts. Don’t run their tail part or near the noses, which can make them wild.
Not excited about sitting on a lap
Feeding them on your lap is the simplest way in which you can attract the cats for your lap. Because feeding them involves certain emotions, and hence when you are ready to care, they are prepared to share. Especially while you are planning some treats for the cats, feed them from the lap, and they are going to love it. Also, helping them groom on your lap will ensure that it is registered in their mind well. Check Truetouch hand gloves that can give ultimate comfort to your cats. Next time when they want to get groomed, they come to your lap.


When a cat sits next to you but not on your lap, it is okay. It will take some time to share a special bond with you, but it’s not difficult. However, never force them to sit on a lap and ruin your bonding. Because some cats are not just lapping cats. Their body language means they don’t like this as a sign of affection or bonding. It is just annoying for them to sit over someone else lap. And this does not mean that they do not like you; it only means they are not lap cats.

Latest posts