7 Ways on How To Assert Dominance Over A Cat

Discover effective techniques on how to assert dominance over a cat and establish yourself as the alpha in your feline-human relationship.

Understanding Feline Hierarchy: Exploring the Alpha Position

Are in interested in learning how to assert dominance over a cat? Understanding the feline hierarchy is crucial when it comes to asserting dominance over your cat.

how to assert dominance over a cat

Cats are do not have linear hierarchies, but they establish a social structure within their group. By understanding their social dynamics, you can position yourself as the alpha in your feline-human relationship.

How do cats determine dominance?

How do cats determine dominance

Felines have a unique social structure. Like what I mentioned earlier, they are not pack beings. They don’t follow a certain ranking or order within their social circle. Still, cats can easily adapt to group living with other animals and humans.

In general, cats’ living setup can be divided into two groups: those that resemble a pride of lions and those that are similar to solitary wild felines. When living in colonies (like your household), cats tend to have a loose hierarchy. This hierarchy isn’t something that has to be maintained. In most cat colonies, the loose ranking changes from time to time.

In a multiple cat household, some cats will try to impose their dominance over other felines. This happens a lot when the other cat is a newcomer. The resident feline feels like his territory is threatened. The kitty will hiss, growl, and attack the other cat to drive it away to defend. Please read here why does my cat bite my other cat neck

What you need to watch out for is pushy or over-aggressive behavior. Cats don’t have a sense of boundaries when it comes to their owners, especially well-bonded ones. They will try to invade your workplace or beg for food just because they can. This is where you need to teach the cat that you’re the dominant one.

How to assert dominance over a cat?

When it comes to cats, dominance is a fleeting thing. If you want to raise a discipline feline that respects you, it’s important to set the rules and stick to them. This also takes a lot of patience. The following tips may teach you how to assert dominance over a cat:

How do you show dominance over your cat

1. Positive reinforcement is the key

Positive reinforcement is a powerful tool in asserting dominance over your cat. Cats respond well to rewards and praise for good behavior. When your cat displays desired behaviors, such as using the litter box or scratching on appropriate surfaces, reward them with treats, praise, or playtime.

By positively reinforcing good behavior, you create a positive association in your cat’s mind and reinforce your role as the provider of rewards. This strengthens the bond between you and your cat and establishes your authority.

2. Set Boundaries: Establishing Rules and Consistency

Setting boundaries is crucial if you want to know how to assert dominance over a cat. Cats need structure and consistency to understand their place in the hierarchy. Establish rules and stick to them consistently.

For example, set boundaries on where your cat is allowed to go in the house. Use positive reinforcement and redirection techniques to guide your cat towards desired behaviors and discourage unwanted behaviors. By consistently enforcing these boundaries, you establish yourself as the leader and reinforce your dominance.

Maintain confident body language. Stand tall, avoid slouching, and avoid making yourself appear smaller than your cat. This will communicate to your cat that you are the one in charge.

3. Play and Exercise: Channeling Your Cat’s Energy

Play and exercise are essential in asserting dominance over your cat. Cats have a natural instinct to hunt and play, and by channeling their energy through interactive play sessions, you establish yourself as the one in control.

Engage your cat in daily play sessions using interactive toys, such as feather wands or laser pointers. This not only provides mental and physical stimulation but also allows you to direct your cat’s energy and establish yourself as the leader in playtime.

4. Don’t run favorites on your cats

One of the reasons why cats become dominant is they feel threatened by the other pets. You’re probably giving more attention to the other cat. Your resident kitty will become jealous and try to impose its presence on you or the other cat.

To prevent this, you should maintain a fair atmosphere at home. Feed the cats at the same time and give equal time to both. This way, both felines will associate each other’s presence into something good.

5. Leash training will help

Leash training helps a lot of cats. This teaches your kitty that you call the shots whenever both of you are going outdoors. Slowly introducing the leash is important so your cat won’t grow aloof of the restraint. You should also know how to restrain a cat for grooming.

Frequently Asked Questions

Should I be worried if my cat keeps biting me?

Should I be worried if my cat keeps biting me

You should worry if your cat keeps on biting you. Sometimes, it’s more than just love bites. If your cat bites and draws blood, you have to do something.

Putting the cat on time out will work, but avoid trapping the kitty in a room for too long. You can try training and making your skin unappealing to bite.

Please read here why does my cat lick me then bite me

Is it okay to rough play with your cat?

Rough playing with your cat might backfire. For example, flicking them with your hands or playfully playing their tails might be interpreted as harmful. Aside from potentially attacking you, the cat will associate your hand with danger. The next time you try to pet the cat, it may run away or dodge your hand.

Also, the rough play might become the root of behavioral problems. Your cat may think that rough play is always welcome, even to other people.

Are male cats more dominant than female cats?

In my experience with cats, males are more likely to impose dominance than females. This is because male cats tend to defend larger territories than their female counterparts. Most of the time, this dominance is directed toward other cats, but they can also aim it to their owners.

Male cats exhibit their dominance by spraying all over their territory. Some are less affectionate than females, but this isn’t always conclusive.

How can you tell who the alpha cat is?

How can you tell who the alpha cat is

Cats don’t follow the same hierarchy as dogs, so they don’t have a clear alpha. However, you will notice when a cat is trying to be domineering. If your cat isn’t stopping when told or bullying other cats, take it as a sign of dominance. Others will demand loudly for food, playtime, or your attention.

All of these can be corrected with training and positive reinforcement. However, you have to be patient as cats tend to be independent and stubborn. learn more here how to wean a stubborn kitten.


Knowing how to assert dominance over a cat is way different than what you’ll do with dogs. I have both a cat and a dog, and I can tell you that they are extremely two different pets. Cats don’t have a sense of alpha, so you have to use positive reinforcement to get the upper hand.

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