Ask Dr Fiona

My cat is terrified of my boyfriend, and recently started acting up, hissing, and also pooing and weeing outside of his kitty litter whenever he’s around.

It sounds like your cat is felling super stressed when your boyfriend is around. This is not uncommon and it doesn’t take much for our feline friends to feel uneasy if their environment is upset or changed.

Make sure you provide your cat with an area he can escape to that allows him to hide away in peace. A cardboard box with a bed inside or an igloo style bed is a good place to start and try varying the height of this (cats sometimes feel safer up high). Allow your cat to retreat to this area when your boyfriend is around.

You should also investigate and consider plugging in a Feliway pheromone diffuser. This releases a synthetic pheromone to help reduce any stress your cat might be feeling.  You can find out more info about it here.

Encourage your boyfriend to slowly and quietly increase his interactions with your cat.  Start by getting your boyfriend to feed your cat with your cat and hopefully he won’t see your boyfriend as such a threat.

If things aren’t improving, you should talk to a veterinarian about the behaviour concerns, they may need to investigate further and can provide you and your cat with support.

If you’d like to chat in person, you can get a vet within minutes on a live video call or start a text chat to discuss in more detail.

We’re here to help!

Chat soon,
Dr Fi