Pet Keen is reader-supported. When you buy via links on our site, we may earn an affiliate commission at no cost to you. Learn more.

Home > Cats > My Cat Won’t Leave Me Alone, What’s Going On (Vet Approved Reasons)

My Cat Won’t Leave Me Alone, What’s Going On (Vet Approved Reasons)

cat waking up his owner

Vet approved

Dr. Paola Cuevas Photo

Reviewed & Fact-Checked By

Dr. Paola Cuevas

Veterinarian, MVZ

The information is current and up-to-date in accordance with the latest veterinarian research.

Learn more »

Cats can be extremely persistent in their attention seeking. Some cats will bombard their owners with meows. Other cats will do silly things like sit on their head or stand on their keyboards. Some cats will doggedly follow a person around all day, no matter where they are or what they are doing. So, what the heck is going on? Why won’t your cat leave you alone? Some people enjoy this level of attention from their feline companions, but other people find it distracting, irritating, or obnoxious. The reason your cat is acting this way can be due to a number of different factors. Here are some reasons that your cat might not want to leave you alone.


The 6 Reasons Your Cat Won’t Leave You Alone

1. Anxiety

Cats have a reputation for being aloof and solitary, but they can experience severe bouts of anxiety like any other animal. One of the biggest reasons your cat won’t leave you alone is due to anxiety. Cats can suffer from separation anxiety and can exhibit some truly clingy behavior when you get home. If your cat is bombarding you with attention seeking behavior when you get home, they could be happy to see you after experiencing separation anxiety when you were away.

Cats can also suffer from other types of anxiety. If you have other pets, they might be scaring your cat and making them feel uncomfortable. If you recently got a new cat, your previous cat might be seeking you out for attention and protection. Cats can also feel anxiety if the litter box was changed or is full, if you have recently changed their food, or if they have been denied access to their favorite hiding places. All of these things can result in your cat refusing to leave you alone in hopes that being near you will help their anxiety abate.

Trying to identify and alleviate the source of your cat’s anxiety can help alleviate your cat’s obnoxious behaviors as well.

bengal cat on owners lap
Image By: golubovystock, Shutterstock

2. Heat

If you have a female cat that is unspayed and has recently become more clingy and increasingly vocal, these are clear indications that she has started her heat cycle. If you are not planning to breed your cat, you need to make sure she has no contact with males and is kept securely inside your home until you can get her spayed.

3. Hunger

Believe it or not, your cat might simply think they are hungry. Some cats are extremely food motivated and will become highly obnoxious if they want to be fed. If your cat is particularly clingy during the morning or evening hours, they might simply be trying to get your attention to feed them. This type of behavior can happen whether you have a strict feeding schedule or not. If you have a feeding schedule, cats will learn it and start to pester you around feeding time.

4. Love

Some cats are extremely affectionate. If your cat keeps bothering you, it might simply be feeling adoration and love. If your cat is pestering you for pets, love, attention, or lap-sitting, it might simply be an affectionate behavior. If your cat is meowing happily or purring, these are signs that they are bothering you because they love you and want to spend time with you. Vets frequently see cats that are overly affectionate with their owners, but there is nothing wrong with them.

cat and owner in bed
Image By: Billion Photos, Shutterstock

5. Illness

Unfortunately, sometimes your cat bothers you because it does not feel well. If your cats are sick, they could start behaving in unusual ways. If your cat does not often bother you and they start being clingy and annoying out of the blue, it could be a cause for concern. If your cat is acting odd, seems lethargic, won’t eat, and is bothering you more than usual, you might want to take it to the vet to have it checked for signs of injury or illness.

6. Late Pregnancy

If you have noticed that your unspayed female has put on weight and her nipples are more noticeable than before, chances are that she will soon deliver a litter. Female cats can become quite clingy and affectionate near their labor date, especially if it’s their first pregnancy. This post goes through everything that you need to know about what to expect and how to prepare when receiving a kitten litter.


Are the Interactions Anxious or Friendly?

One way to gauge what your cat is feeling is to judge the type of interactions you are having with your cat. When your cat is bothering you, following you, and pestering you, do they seem playful? Does your cat seem happy, or does it seem agitated or anxious? Does your cat seem to want something, or do they just want to be near you? Is your cat purring or asking for pets?

If your interactions with your cats feel anxious, then the cat could be bothering you because it is anxious. That means your cat might be feeling lonely or suffering from separation anxiety. It might also mean that your cat is not feeling great and is trying to get your attention.

If the interactions with your cat are primarily friendly, then it is likely that your cat is feeling attached, lovey, or playful. Your cat might just be extremely happy to see you and has decided to pursue a deeper bond.



Some people don’t mind when their cats are super clingy and lovey, but other people find it obnoxious or annoying. Cats’ clingy behavior can be a result of anxiety, health issues, or just pure love. The exact reason your cat is acting the way it is will depend on the cat’s personality, past behavior, and current environment.

Featured Image Credit: Kasefoto, Shutterstock

Our vets

Want to talk to a vet online?

Whether you have concerns about your dog, cat, or other pet, trained vets have the answers!

Our vets