It’s sometimes difficult to tell the difference between cats fighting vs. cats playing. That’s because we’re humans and don’t usually hunt and tackle each other for fun.
At least most of us don’t.
If you’ve ever seen National Geographic -or Disney’s The Lion King – you’ve likely seen how cats pounce and wrestle each other, especially when they’re young kittens. This is an instinctive behavior and doesn’t need to be ‘taught’ to our cats.
But should we allow our indoor cats to pounce and rough house like this? The answer is simple… Yes.
Indoor cats are (ideally!) safe, loved, fed and statistically live longer lives than outdoor cats. Only problem? Indoor cats don’t always (or often) get to exercise and enjoy their instinctive nature. Our humble opinion is that cats should be allowed to be cats, even if they’re indoors.
Stalking, hunting and playing are what all cats long to do – whether inside or outside. When there’s no opportunity for these activities, kitties get bored and stressed out. That’s why it’s a great thing when our cats pounce and play with each other.
Cats Fighting Vs. Playing
Cats that are fighting each other raise red flags. It’s usually easy as a cat parent to know when the situation needs your intervention. Cats can make other-worldly noises when they’re in a real fight – in addition to other indicators like ears back, hissing and growling at each other – puffed up tails and arched backs. This is not behavior we want to encourage.
On the other hand, sometimes cat parents will interrupt playtime because it starts looking like a real cat fight. Ears will go back, just not as far. Growling may happen, but it doesn’t sound scary. Hissing may be instinctive while rough playing, but it’s not consistent.
It’s important to pay attention to your kitties so you can know the difference between your cats fighting vs. playing. Our kittens will pounce and play with each other for extended periods of time – and sometimes even our older boys will join the fray! At first, Adrienne was concerned that the kittens might be too much for our grown-ups, but now that we pay close attention to their interaction we get to sit back, relax, and enjoy watching our cats be cats!