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Do Cats Forgive You If You Hurt Them?

There is always that chance you may accidentally step on your cat’s tail or paw. Cats are everywhere, and sometimes you may find them under your foot or in other situations. 

So, what happens when you hurt your cat? Does your cat ever forgive you for hurting them? How long does it take?

Your cat may take a while, but they will forgive you. Eventually, it depends on the temperament of your cat and if you do the right things to earn their trust back. It could take a little bit.

Don’t worry too much. Your cat won’t avoid you forever or act out. You can do many things to help make your cat feel safer. Here are some of those things.

Do Cats Forgive You if You Hurt Them?

Yes, your cat will forgive you if you hurt them. Each cat will act differently to the pain caused, and you won’t receive that forgiveness right away, but eventually, they will forgive you.

You will need to take some time to gain their trust back. There are many ways you can mend your relationship with your cat but what you do depends on your cat’s temperament and boundaries. 

Remember, no two cats are the same.

Signs Your Cat is Mad at You

Signs Your Cat is Mad at You

Before you start gaining your cat’s forgiveness, first see if your cat is mad at you. Sometimes your cat isn’t even mad at you and just needs time to heal from the pain and shock of being hurt.

You can look for many signs to see if your cat is specifically mad at you or just trying to recuperate. Here are a few of those signs:

  • They go to the bathroom outside the litter box.
  • Ignoring you.
  • Puking on your stuff.
  • Chewing or destroying things.
  • Not eating.
  • Aggression towards you.

They go to the Bathroom Outside the Litter Box

This goes more for cats that have been potty trained. If you have a kitten still practicing, they may have done this by accident and aren’t necessarily mad at you.

But a potty-trained cat who is mad will go out of its way to pee or poop on your bed, clothing, and any other places that you tend to relax at frequently. 

They will even pee on freshly cleaned clothes to prove their point.

Ignoring You

Your cat may be mad if you notice they are absent when they normally would seek your attention. They may be avoiding you, or when you call for them, they go in a different direction.

Some cats will even make it a point to show you that they ignore you by coming near you and then turning away when you call for it. 

Don’t worry, and you will know when they give you the cold shoulder.

Puking on Your Stuff

You may have noticed puke on your stuff. This may be because of the food your cat ate but not always.

If the food it is eating is its normal brand, your cat may be puking on your stuff to tell you that it is upset with you. Here are some signs that the puking isn’t because of food or illness:

  • The puking doesn’t occur right after meals.
  • Your cat is puking in your room.
  • Your cat is vomiting on your bed or clothes.
  • It seems to happen only when you have upset your cat.
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Vomiting can be a behavioral symptom rather than a physical one. If you have tried to switch up the food brand and the vet doesn’t see anything physically wrong with your pet, they could just be mad at you. 

Chewing or Destroying Things

Chewing and destroying your stuff may happen because of youth or boredom, but it can also be due to acting out. It is a way for your cat to communicate to you that they are mad.

You may find all your phone chargers are chewed clean through. Your cat knows how to hit you where it hurts, and chargers will be one of your targets.

Not Eating

You may find your cat not eating when they are mad at you. This can cause other physical ailments, but it could also be behavioral.

If it seems that your cat is not eating because of behavior, then you don’t need to worry too much. 

Keep an eye out for their food levels and ensure they eat something within a day. You don’t want your cat getting sick from not eating.

Try giving your cat wet cat food or some yummy new treats. This will temper their mood somewhat, even if for a moment.

Aggression Towards You

One of the easiest ways to see if your cat is angry is aggression towards you. They openly show you that they are mad and want to let you know. 

There are many ways you can tell if what you are seeing is aggression or not. Here are some forms of aggression:

  • Growling
  • Swatting
  • Biting
  • Arched back
  • Fluffed tail
  • They are backing away from you without taking their eyes off you.
  • Ears flattened
  • Tail erect
  • Scratching
  • Charging you

Steps to Gain Your Cat’s Forgiveness

Steps to Gain Your Cat’s Forgiveness

Now that you know if your cat is mad at you, you can begin the steps to gain their forgiveness. 

Some cats may forgive you on their own within hours or even a day. Some it may take some time, especially if you hurt them badly.

You can follow these steps to begin the journey of gaining your cat’s forgiveness:

  • Give them space.
  • Let them come to you.
  • Don’t rush things.
  • Stay consistent with your actions.
  • Respect their boundaries.
  • Limit your movement around them.
  • Refrain from hurting them again.

Give Them Space

Always give them space after you have hurt them. They need this time to recuperate from what had just happened. They may still be in shock.

They want space to calm down and figure out what has just happened. Chasing after them will only make things worse and add to the shock.

Let Them Come to You

Let your cat come to you. Yes, you want to check if your cat has any major injuries. 

Take an observational note. You can tell from a distance if your cat needs to be taken to the vet right away or not.

It may take a minute or even days, but your cat needs to come to you. 

Cats aren’t like dogs, where they try to gain your forgiveness when things go wrong. They need their space and need to regain that trust.

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Don’t Rush Things

Don’t rush things. If your cat is physically okay, give them the space they need and let them come to you. 

You can slowly gain their trust back by trying to get close to them again, but don’t rush it. 

If you move faster than they want, they won’t trust you, and you will have to start over-building that relationship again.

Stay Consistent With Your Actions

Try to stay consistent with your actions. Your cat won’t be afraid of you when you can remain consistent because it knows what to expect from you.

Consistency will help you build trust between you two more quickly than if you tried to “surprise” your pet. 

They need to understand that what you did was a mistake and that you won’t be doing it again. Consistency is key.

Respect Their Boundaries

Anytime your cat puts space between you or shows aggression towards you, they are setting their boundaries. Respect these boundaries.

Your cat may feel like its world is chaotic or unsafe. You want to provide a safe environment. To show them this, you need to respect their boundaries.

Doing this will show that they have control over their autonomy and don’t need to fear you. It shows you respect them.

Limit Your Movement Around Them

After hurting them, your cat will see you as something that harms them. To regain their trust and gain forgiveness, limit any movement. 

Sudden or large movements can make them feel unsafe. You don’t want that, and you want to show them that you won’t surprise them. This will help with that.

Refrain from Hurting Them again

Try not to hurt your cat again. Accidents do happen, but if you are careful not to make the same mistakes, your cat won’t lose its trust in you, which makes it easier to forgive you for small things.

If you repeatedly hurt them, even if it is an accident, your cat will lose faith in you, and your relationship will suffer. 

What to do if You Accidentally Hurt Your Cat?

What to do if You Accidentally Hurt Your Cat?

You have just hurt your cat, and now you don’t know what to do. You will feel guilt for causing your pet pain, but the most important thing at this time is your cat. 

You will need to follow these steps to ensure your cat is okay:

  1. Locate your cat.
  2. Take in visual observation of them if you can’t get close to them.
  3. Take any notes of limping, injuries, or other unusual behavior.
  4. For severe injuries, take them to an emergency vet.
  5. You may not need to set up a vet appointment for lesser injuries.
  6. Take note of any abnormal behavior for the next few days, especially if they aren’t eating.
  7. Set up a vet appointment if your cat seems tired, not eating or drinking for days, or disoriented.
  8. Begin the steps to forgiveness.

If you still have any doubts, call your vet to see what they suggest. You know your cat best, and it won’t do any harm to see if your cat has any underlying injuries that you can’t see.


Your cat may be mad at you for a while, but it won’t last forever. Continue to take it easy and not rush anything. 

Eventually, they will come around, and your relationship can become stronger than ever!