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Arching Back And Walking Sideways

Coolgram

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Hello everyone. My yr. old cat, Gracie, has been exhibiting out of the ordinary behavior the last few days. Usually, once a day, she has a case of the zoomies lasting maybe 15 minutes. No problem. The last few days, when she's zooming around, her tail is fluffed out, ears back, she arches her back and hops sideways. In reading up on this, it seems she's attempting to show dominance or scare off another animal. We have no other animal in the house, she's always been the only one so that can hardly be the reason. She does seem to do this if I've been playing with her for awhile and then stop, but sometimes I stop because I can sense she's really starting to get hyper and I want her to calm down. Could the reason for this behavior be that she's telling me she's not happy that I've stopped giving her attention? I also wondered (I know this sounds crazy), if the upcoming full moon could be affecting her behavior? Does this happen? At all other times she's a sweet cat, and loves to cuddle with me, but she definitely lets me know when she's not happy with something. Does anyone else's cat do this? I guess the best thing I can do is just ignore her when she gets like that, I'm just worried it's showing an undesirable change in her basic personality. Any thoughts?
 

Azazel

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Some cats do this while they play - especially kittens. Since your cat is only a year old I'd say it's normal (and freakishly cute). I don't think you should ignore her, I think you should play with her more because it sounds like she has a lot of pent up energy to let out. :)
 
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Coolgram

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Some cats do this while they play - especially kittens. Since your cat is only a year old I'd say it's normal (and freakishly cute). I don't think you should ignore her, I think you should play with her more because it sounds like she has a lot of pent up energy to let out. :)
You're right, it is really cute, I was just worried it signaled a change in her normally sweet personality! That may not have sounded right when I said about ignoring her, but trust me when I say I play with her a LOT every day, so she's definitely not suffering from lack of attention! It seems sleeping, playing and eating are the only 3 activities she's interested in and not necessarily in that order! And you're right - she does have a ton of energy (slightly more than I do unfortunately!)
 

PushPurrCatPaws

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... The last few days, when she's zooming around, her tail is fluffed out, ears back, she arches her back and hops sideways. In reading up on this, it seems she's attempting to show dominance or scare off another animal. We have no other animal in the house, she's always been the only one so that can hardly be the reason. She does seem to do this if I've been playing with her for awhile and then stop, but sometimes I stop because I can sense she's really starting to get hyper and I want her to calm down. Could the reason for this behavior be that she's telling me she's not happy that I've stopped giving her attention? ...
There actually is one other animal in the house: you! :)
It sounds like she's really enjoying the play sessions! She's right at that age of learning social hierarchies and, besides being a Play Monster, she's showing you who is boss. You can always get down on all fours, turn sideways, and arch your spine right back at her, lol! (Get up and run, if you prefer being prey.)
:running:
 

susanm9006

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She is just being silly and taking on imaginary enemies. Cats tend to outgrow this as they get older but there certainly is no harm in it or any negative reflection or effect on her personality. Encourage her to play as hard and as long as she has the energy for it. It keeps her weight down and it is just plain fun for her.
 

Azazel

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One of my cats loved to do the arched back and sideways walk thing too when he was a kitten. And he was always ready to pounce on me. If I were to turn my back while crouching down he would pounce on me from the back. :devilcat2:
 

MistyRino

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Kittens have ton's of energy and are normally trying to get attention - a lot. I would say just play with her, she may have some energy she need's to let out, so playing with her, the sideways hop is actually rarely dominance or aggressiveness thing for your cat/kitten to do, it actually normally mean's they want you to play along, and sometime's it means's there really happy, or in rare cases, they are afraid, or angry, but when you're playing -especially with a kitten. The cat/kitten, normally is saying- Play with me more! OR join me! So maybe don't stop playing, really she's trying to say to play with her, but if she does this randomly at a window (normally mean's something's out there or moving) or just looking at something, like a couch/table/etc. It could mean there's a scent that just freaked her out, or some other animal may have put some scent on it, or it could just be the kitten trying to play with it, (this may sound dumb but...) my cat try's to play with my curtains or a table! So your kitten could think it's a 'toy' or something fun to jump on, it may be a perfume, or something you put on the 'thing' she's trying to play with.

Some cat's get affected by full moons/don't like it, but I don't think it's that, she's a kitten so to her it's nothing, her only attention will really be on thing's she can get to/that can come to her and pet her. I know blood/red moons can get a cat's attention, and many cats don't like it, it can scare them, my cat used to be an outdoor cat, so blood/red moons are weird to cat's (and other animals too) sometimes. Cats actually sometimes hide during full/blood moons, and they are sometimes really weird. (Like my cat, she once was acting strange on night, the night of the Blood Moon, or Lunar Eclipse.)

I hope that helped! :)
 
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Coolgram

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There actually is one other animal in the house: you! :)
It sounds like she's really enjoying the play sessions! She's right at that age of learning social hierarchies and, besides being a Play Monster, she's showing you who is boss. You can always get down on all fours, turn sideways, and arch your spine right back at her, lol! (Get up and run, if you prefer being prey.)
:running:
Haha! I can picture that! At age 72, and with bad knees, I probably won't be getting down on the floor and the running is questionable but they're good suggestions. I don't have a problem with her behaving that way because it is funny, I just don't want it to be the start of some possible bad behaviors. I'm probably overthinking this - I have a tendency to do that. :lol:
 

Azazel

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Haha! I can picture that! At age 72, and with bad knees, I probably won't be getting down on the floor and the running is questionable but they're good suggestions. I don't have a problem with her behaving that way because it is funny, I just don't want it to be the start of some possible bad behaviors. I'm probably overthinking this - I have a tendency to do that. :lol:
Your cat is probably still outgrowing the teenage years - they really are the most difficult in terms of bad behavior. Play is key - if she gets enough play to let out her energy in a healthy way then she will be less motivated to do it in a not so healthy way.
 

PushPurrCatPaws

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Haha! I can picture that! At age 72, and with bad knees, I probably won't be getting down on the floor and the running is questionable but they're good suggestions. I don't have a problem with her behaving that way because it is funny, I just don't want it to be the start of some possible bad behaviors. I'm probably overthinking this - I have a tendency to do that. :lol:
:D

Do you have a mid-sized mirror you can place on the floor? I've seen kittens, including my own when she was little, play with mirrors, arching the back, hissing, darting away and back again, tapping the mirror. :lol:
 

PushPurrCatPaws

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... She does seem to do this if I've been playing with her for awhile and then stop, but sometimes I stop because I can sense she's really starting to get hyper and I want her to calm down. Could the reason for this behavior be that she's telling me she's not happy that I've stopped giving her attention? ...
:yeah:
I agree with MistyRino, that she's likely saying, "Don't stop!" or "Play with me!"

You could also just sit down but throw a little toy or jingle ball into the air or under a pile of crunched-up paper, as an example, so that she'll play with that instead of with you for a while. She's trying out her body language on you to see how you will respond (we call what she does "side-catting" in our house), so it's a good idea to do some predetermined or predictable gestures or body stances (and a phrase or word you can repeat each time, like, "We're done now, whoooo") after she does her "side-catting" so that she will figure out when you're done playing with her.
:)
 

Etarre

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I haven't noticed a change in behavior due to the full moon, but my cats always get a little crazy when the seasons change. After several months of being hot and uncomfortable in their beautiful fur coats, they're now perfectly dressed for fall, and ready to race around chasing invisible enemies. Plus, the way our schedules line up with the length of the day, sunrise, etc. is changing slightly, and that probably puzzles them a bit.
 
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Coolgram

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:yeah:
I agree with MistyRino, that she's likely saying, "Don't stop!" or "Play with me!"

You could also just sit down but throw a little toy or jingle ball into the air or under a pile of crunched-up paper, as an example, so that she'll play with that instead of with you for a while. She's trying out her body language on you to see how you will respond (we call what she does "side-catting" in our house), so it's a good idea to do some predetermined or predictable gestures or body stances (and a phrase or word you can repeat each time, like, "We're done now, whoooo") after she does her "side-catting" so that she will figure out when you're done playing with her.
:)
I think she does figure out when I'm done playing, she just doesn't like it! She has a ton of toys but the only ones she'll have anything to do with are what I call the fishing pole toys (which require my involvement) and the laser light (which also requires my involvement). Don't get me wrong, I love playing with her but can't do it 24/7, which I think she'd love! I do play with her often throughout the day, in fact as soon as I sit down I pick up the fishing pole and even after she leaves the room I find myself still absent-mindedly swinging it around!
 
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Coolgram

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:D

Do you have a mid-sized mirror you can place on the floor? I've seen kittens, including my own when she was little, play with mirrors, arching the back, hissing, darting away and back again, tapping the mirror. :lol:
That's a good idea, I'll try that. I have a large mirror in my living room and several times she's seen herself in it and was really baffled by the sight of "another" cat. I have one I could prop against a wall somewhere, thanks for the suggestion.
 

ameliashuman

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My calico would do this as a kitten when we played with her and she started to learn that it was a great way to get our attention (it was too cute, how could we not respond!). Now six years later, she does her Halloween cat pose when she wants us to play, let, or feed her. Confuses the other cats:rolleyes:

So watch what you reinforce, these behaviors last a long time. But it's so cute, I don't really be mind
 

susanm9006

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My Willow is nine. She doesn’t do the sideways walk but she still puffs up her tail, howls and hisses at things only she can see.
 

Buffster7

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My Charlie is almost 9, and he has been doing this lately when he feels happy and frisky. I have a new cat in the guest bedroom who hasn't been integrated yet, and I've noticed more "kitten" and playful behaviors from Charlie. He's been doing zoomies, he's been doing short bursts of crab walks (but only with me), and has been overall more playful. I definitely get "happy" vibe from him when he's doing it!
 

Maria Bayote

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My Graham arches her back and at times moves sideways when she probably wants to "brag" to her much older cat siblings that she is also a grown-up and won't back away. It is so funny to watch, especially when she thinks my Bourbon is about to swat her for being so hyper. Sometimes she would also slowly crawl, like a soldier in the middle of a war zone, as if the other cats don't see her, then pounce.

No dull day with cats. :)
 
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