My Cat is scared of my father and sometimes pees herself when really terrified

by Jennifer Lenhart
(Saskatoon, SK, Canada)

Elena top, Eldora botto.

Elena top, Eldora botto.


I have two cats that came from the same litter - both were trapped as a litter by a rescue group. I adopted them both when they were 6 months old, living with a foster family. They are now 2 years old.

Elena is more curious and bold than her sister, Eldora. I have 2 concerns about Eldora.

Eldora has become afraid of my father. Neither are enthused when I have company, but both were very comfortable with my father until recently. My dad visits often and helps me take them on vet trips, etc.. Both cats allowed him to pet and brush them.

My kitties had a run in with the neighbour kitties about a month ago and it terrified Eldora so badly she peed herself. She also peed herself at the vet office on one other occasion (I think scared of the other pets in the waiting room).

Since this incident last month, Eldora has reverted to a much more timid state and is now totally afraid of my dad. If she hears him near, she goes under the bed until he leaves. If we are outside (on harnesses), she hides under a car and walks slowly with her belly to the ground to get there. Eldora's interactions with me are the same.

It breaks my heart that she becomes so scared that she pees - is there anything I can do to calm her or work this out? Also, can we do anything to rebuild her relationship with my dad?

Thank you for your help,


Answer by Kate

This sounds to me
like she has blamed her fear on your father. Now this sounds odd especially if he had no connection with the initial fear but it is not an uncommon problem. Also make sure that your father has not changed his aftershave or toiletries as sometimes cats can react rather aggressively or fearfully towards certain scents.

the thing to do is to get your dad to try and bond with this cat again, however this has to be done at her pace and must not be forced so can take a little time and patience. i have a web page about how to bond with a cat which you may find of interest here

As for the nervous peeing. well unfortunately some cats are just more nervous than others and in this case it does sound rather extreme. this cat sounds like they are lacking in confidence and needs some time to be able to build this up without a lot of external interference which may be preventing them from building their confidence. in these cases it is recommended that the cat is confined to a smaller area i.e less things to worry about. keeping them in one room with all there things and litter tray for a week or so gives them a time out to calm down. the start to slowly reintroduce them again to the house in a calm and quiet fashion.

Hope your kitty finds her confidence again soon and becomes less of a nervous cat.

I also have a page about nervous cats which you may also find of interest here

best wishes kate

Comments for My Cat is scared of my father and sometimes pees herself when really terrified

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Your cat
by: Anonymous

Honestly your cat may be afraid of your father if she was left alone with him and he abused her. She won't be scared of him like that due to a fight with another cat, C'mon

same thing
by: Anonymous

I have a rescue cat that looks exactly like yours and she just urinated on herself at the vet's. She is very high strung, but can be very loving, too.

Does anyone know a good shampoo for cats?

by: Anonymous

The cats are ds, dilute tortoiseshell

by: Anonymous

Do you happen to know what kind of cat Eldora is? We adopted a rescue cat 4 years ago and she looks identical! To this day, we don't know what kind she is. Thanks!

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