Very friendly and bold cats may see visitors as something pleasurable and exciting whilst more nervous or sensitive cats may become worried by the presence of unfamiliar people in the home.
Ensuring your cat always has the means to escape and hide or get up high will help to make her feel safer in these situations. If your cat is sensitive or shy then it may be helpful to follow these guidelines:-
- It is a good idea if you let your guests know if your cat is likely to find new people a bit overwhelming and suggest that they let the cat choose whether to approach them or not. Your cat may prefer to have a good look first before she chooses to interact. Sometimes it is better for your guests to ignore her and let her make the first move!
- If your cat is motivated by food treats, ask your guests to gently throw some of your cat’s favourite treats on the ground a short distance away from her, encouraging your cat to approach.
- If your cat does approach, advise your guests to initially crouch down and offer their hand (palm facing down) for her to sniff. If your cat sniffs or rubs against their hand, you can encourage your guests to gently stroke the area around your cat’s cheeks and chin. If your cat is very playful, you could also encourage your guests to use a fishing rod or feathered wand toy if you think she would be more comfortable playing than being stroked.
- Whilst your guests visit you can also use the pheromone plug-in diffuser (as mentioned above) to help her feel more relaxed.