Cats don't hold grudges and will quickly forgive and forget one-off incidents. They want to forgive human transgressions as an act of self-preservation, as much as anything else. Make this easier for your cat by providing a welcoming, comforting environment.
The good news is, despite their reputations for being antisocial, cats love bonding and they do forgive and forget. So, if you're at a loss as to how you're going to rebuild trust and affection with your cat, don't fret.
You can apologize to your cat by spending time with him. This could be as simple as reading a book or listening to music next to your cat, or giving him a nice, long petting session. It could also mean that you have to set aside some time to play with your cat. Praise and compliment your cat.
The good news is that abused cats can be helped. Depending on the cat's temperament, age, and condition, many of these cats may end up being loving pets again. Others may be helped through medical care and being given a safe environment where they will no longer suffer abuse.
Trauma can also manifest as “shaking, hiding, urination and/or defecation when the trigger attempts to interact, howling, pacing, excessive vocalization, and panting,” says Pia Silvani, director of behavioral rehabilitation at the ASPCA's Behavioral Rehabilitation Center.
Cats don't hold grudges like humans do because they don't have the same spectrum of emotions as humans. Instead, cats associate certain actions and behaviors with bad events and good events. Based on this association, they react differently. Many cat behaviors remain mysteries, and their memory is no different.
So, even if a cat can hold a grudge, the grudge shouldn't last for more than a few hours at best. Cats are extremely forgiving animals and will forgive you in a matter of minutes if you make an invitation to friendship.
Shouting at the TV when your cat is curled in your lap is a guaranteed way to hurt your cat's feelings. Don't be surprised when they get up and leave. Making loud noises shows you don't always respect your cat's sensitivities, and it could cause your cat to avoid spending time with you.
To spot the signs of cat abuse, look for physical signs of neglect, like weight loss, visible bones, poor skin and coat quality, matted fur, and open sores. You should also keep an eye out for unintentional abuse, such as hoarding, which is when cats are kept together in overcrowded and unsanitary living conditions.
Distract the cat with a toy or food while you reach your hand around behind his head to touch. Do not reach towards the cat's face with your hand, try to sneak your hand around behind so he think it is still the stick. Rub the back of the neck and head – don't touch any other areas yet.
Never shout or scream at a cat and never hit or physically reprimand your cat. It's sometimes said that 'you just need to show them 'who's the boss'. This is not true. Cats do not respond well to negative reinforcement and it is a very ineffective way to reprimand your cat.
Some cats become less affectionate with age, but not all do. It comes down to your cat's personality. Some prefer to be around their owners more often and become needy as they get older. Others develop an aloof, standoffish personality that upsets their owners.
Your cat doesn't know if your intentions are good or bad, so they try to ignore you. Sometimes, simply accidentally stepping on your cat is enough to trigger the cold-shoulder reaction. In these cases, cats will often flee if you continue to solicit their attention.
The first thing you have to understand is that your cat still loves you, but he is going through a time when he is not able to express his affection as he would like. The reasons are physical, psychological, or a mixture of both.
A clap, a tone a voice or even a smell -- the slightest cue can spur your cat into defensive mode after a negative association is cemented. Abused cats often run or hide when they recognize anything related to that abuse.
But as it turns out, science shows us that cats are much more complex and emotionally attuned than we give them credit for. They may not say sorry the same way a human would. But they do apologise, in their own way.
If your cat was not socialized properly when it was small, it could be a reason why they're not well adjusted to your affection. They aren't accustomed to behaviors that we consider 'normal', such as cuddling and hugging, because these acts of affection were never introduced to them.