Why Does My Maine Coon Hiss At Me?


You may have heard about the cuddly, gentle nature of the Maine Coon.

But, if you’re asking yourself why does my Maine Coon hiss at me, then you’re probably feeling disappointed and frustrated by your cat’s behavior.

However, if this is the case just remember that aggressive behavior in cats isn’t based on a desire to be mean; instead, it’s based on fear and insecurity.

Maine Coons hiss when they are feeling threatened, scared, or insecure. Hissing is an important way your cat tells you to back off when they’re overwhelmed. A cat that is constantly hissing at you and avoids touch, however, could be dealing with socialization problems, an insecure environment, or even chronic pain.

You might get offended by your Maine Coon’s aggressive behavior, but try not to take it to heart.

Hissing Maine Coons are often dealing with a lot of emotional turmoil, and their behavioral problems might actually be the fault of the owners!

Why Does My Maine Coon Hiss At Me?

The Maine Coon is a large, highly intelligent cat breed with a luxurious long coat.

These cats originated naturally in the state of Maine, but it’s not exactly known how they came to be.

Despite their mysterious origins, the Maine Coon’s intelligence, gentle personality, and beautiful appearance means it’s only been increasing in popularity over the years.

Click here to learn read the unusual folklore tales about where Maine Coon cats originate from.

Maine Coons are the largest domesticated cat breed in the world, and this, combined with their loving personality, has earned them the nickname “gentle giants.”

However, some owners have noticed aggression and fear in their Maine Coons.

If you’re wondering, why is my cat hissing and growling at me? then it’s important to understand that there are a lot of potential causes.

Here’s a list of possible reasons why your Maine Coon is hissing at you.

1. Disrespected Boundaries

A lot of people blame their cats for hissing and other aggressive behavior, but it’s actually usually the owner’s fault!

Cats require personal space, too, and if their boundaries are being disrespected, then they’re almost certain to respond with hissing and other forms of aggression.

2. Improper Socialization

All kittens should be kept with their littermates and mother for at least eight weeks before going to their forever homes.

Young kittens learn how to socialize with their family members at this stage.

If your Maine Coon was separated from its family too soon, or if you never properly taught it how to handle human touch, then your cat will likely be fearful and aggressive.

3. Feeling Threatened

If your Maine Coon feels unsafe, either because it’s scared of you or something in its environment, then it will attempt to protect itself from contact, and it might even lash out if you try to touch it.

4. Territoriality

Maine Coons are not often thought to be territorial cats, but an unspayed cat without much room to roam might become territorial.

Cats require plenty of space, and if you live in a small, crowded home, then your cat could become possessive of what little territory it can find.

If you are living in an apartment but want to adopt/buy a Maine Coon, make sure you read my guide on whether Maine Coon cats can live in apartments.

5. Overstimulation

Have you ever been playing with your cat, only for your Maine Coon to suddenly launch into a hissing and fighting frenzy?

This may seem bizarre and scary at first, but the reasoning behind it is perfectly natural.

If you play too rough or too much with your cat, it can become so overstimulated that it doesn’t know how to react anymore, and your cat will respond with aggression for a short period of time.

Read more about this particular issue, in my guide ‘14 Causes Of Maine Coon Aggression‘.

6. Stress

Cats are very sensitive to their environments.

If your cat feels threatened by a crowded environment, or if you have a pet or young children that your Maine Coon is scared of, then it will begin lashing out due to stress.

Thankfully though, Maine Coon cats are well known for being tolerant of children’s noise. Make sure you follow these tips though, as even the most patient Maine Coon might lash out at your children if they are too rough.

Loud noise and frequent parties can also cause your Maine Coon to feel insecure in its environment.

7. Adversity To Change

Cats are creatures of habit and don’t usually respond well to major changes.

Moving to a new house, bringing home a new pet or baby, or other huge changes can stress your cat out, causing it to react with aggression.

Finally, even small changes can have a huge impact on some cats!

While rare, something as seemingly simple as changing your laundry detergent or moving around furniture can make your cat extremely upset.

If you think your cat is feeling overwhelmed, make sure you use a few of these plugin cat pheromone diffusers from Amazon. As soon as you’ve plugged a couple in around your home, the calming scent will instantly start to calm your cat down.

8. Other Pets

Maine Coons are famous for getting along well with other cats, and even dogs! Read more about this very fact in this article I wrote.

But that doesn’t mean every single Maine Coon will enjoy new company.

If you get a new pet without doing a proper introduction, your Maine Coon could feel jealous, or as though it doesn’t have a place in the house anymore. You can learn more about other causes of ‘Maine Coon Jealousyin my article.

Your Maine Coon could also be scared of a new pet and will end up becoming aggressive as a result.

9. Boredom

Maine Coons are highly intelligent cats that need a lot of enrichment to feel satisfied.

They need plenty of space, lots of interactive, durable toys, places to climb and jump, and daily playtime with their owners. These are my Maine Coon cat’s favorite toys.

If your Maine Coon isn’t getting enough enrichment, it can become destructive and aggressive.

10. Loneliness

Maine Coons are extremely social, so if you or your family members aren’t giving your cat enough attention, it could become stressed, upset, and aggressive.

If you suspect your Maine Coon is lonely, you should make more time in your day to give your cat attention.

You might also consider adopting a playmate to keep your cat company.

Learn more about why Maine Coon cats require companionship.

11. Family Tensions

Maine Coons have the uncanny ability to read the mood of their owners.

However, this high empathy can sometimes have drawbacks.

If you and your family members or roommates are at odds with one another, or even having huge fights, your Maine Coon will pick up on the tension and become uneasy.

12. Injury Or Illness

Finally, underlying pain can cause your cat to hiss when touched.

Recent surgery or injury will mean your cat is sore, and won’t want to be messed with while it’s healing.

Arthritis is another common reason older cats become aggressive, as it can hurt to be pet in swollen, sore areas.

Furthermore, underlying illnesses like urinary tract infections, parasites, or even cancer could make your cat sensitive and adverse to interaction.

Make sure you know the ‘Top 7 Maine Coon Health Problems‘ to watch out for.

Why Is My Cat Hissing At Me All Of A Sudden?

If your Maine Coon suddenly started to hiss at you, you’re probably wondering, why does my Maine Coon hate me?

You might be sad to have your cat suddenly become aggressive towards you, but you shouldn’t take it personally!

There’s usually a logical reason like these, behind sudden hissing:

ReasonDescription
Big ChangesBig changes like moving or introducing a new family member can have a huge impact on your cat, and it might become fearful and start hissing
Not
Respected its Boundaries
Playing too rough with your cat, accidentally hurting it, or even consistently ignoring your cat’s wishes by getting in its personal space can cause your cat to lose trust in you. If this is the case, you’ll need to win your cat’s trust back by being kind, patient, and most importantly, respecting its boundaries!
Injury Or IllnessAs we mentioned earlier, injury or illness is a common but often surprising reason why your cat might start suddenly hissing at you. If your cat’s sudden hissing is accompanied by less playing, lethargy, or other worrying symptoms and changes in behavior, then contact your vet right away to rule out any underlying health problems.
3 Reasons Why Cat Is Hissing At You

Why Does My Maine Coon Hiss At Me Whilst Playing?

Have you ever been playing with your cat, only for it to start hissing at you?

This is actually a common occurrence when cats become overstimulated.

If you start playing too rough or provide your cat with too many stimuli (like listed below), then your cat will become overwhelmed, and it might become suddenly aggressive for a short while:

  • Lots of loud noises
  • Moving around a feather toy too fast

Why Does My Maine Coon Hiss At Me When I Pet Her?

Hissing is the way cats tell others to back off, and like Maine Coon growling, it’s an important way to establish boundaries.

If your cat hisses while you pet it, then it’s time to back away and give your cat personal space.

Just like humans, cats may like cuddles sometimes, but they aren’t always in the mood to be messed with. However, underlying pain such as arthritis or other health issues could also cause your cat to react negatively to petting.

Hissing is also incredibly common with young kittens who haven’t been socialized yet.

If they were born feral and separated from their mother, or if their breeder didn’t get them used to human interaction, they can be very hissy at first.

Hissy kittens need to be introduced to humans gradually but firmly.

While you shouldn’t pet a hissing adult cat, you should actually get hissing kitten used to pets, so that it can learn that you’re there to take care of it, and not to hurt it.

Why Does My Maine Coon Bite Me?

Nearly all cats are known to bite at least once or twice, but if your Maine Coon bites you frequently, you might ask yourself, why is my Maine Coon so aggressive?

However, there are a lot of reasons why cats bite, and not all of them are bad! Keep reading to learn more:

  • Affection: Surprisingly, many cats show affection through gentle bites, also known as “love bites.” If your cat is licking you and gently nibbles on you every so often, then its bites are simply out of love.
  • Play: Cats play by pretending to fight. They’ll often wrestle around, pummel each other with their back feet, and even bite! Play bites are far more gentle, but it’s best to encourage your cat to play with a toy rather than your arm. After all, we humans don’t have thick fur to protect us from your cat’s bites.
  • Warning: If your cat gives you a sharp nip while displaying upset body language, such as flattened ears or growling, then your cat is warning you to leave it alone. This is a good time to back off and give your cat some personal space- otherwise, your cat might have to escalate things.
  • Anger or Fear: If you ignore your cat’s body language, such as flattened ears, a lashing tail, or warning bites, then your cat will convince you to leave it alone by biting. These bites are typically easy to avoid, so long as you respect your cat’s boundaries and pay attention to its body language.

Why Does My Maine Coon Hate Me?

When my cat hissed at me for the first time, it was scary and upsetting.

A lot of other owners can’t help but wonder, why is my Maine Coon so mean when this has happened. It’s important to remember, though, that hissing and other signs of Maine Coon aggression are among the only ways your cat can communicate.

Cats can’t say “I don’t want to be messed with right now” or “I’m scared of the new dog.”

Sadly, the only way they can communicate negative emotions is through aggressive body language and behavior.

Just because your cat is upset and stressed, though, doesn’t mean it hates you!

If your cat is constantly acting fearful and aggressive, it’s probably not because it hates you. Instead, underlying causes like stress, improper socialization, or health issues are likely to blame.

Instead of feeling sad or angry when your cat hisses at you, it’s your responsibility to find out why your cat is stressed and address the root issue.

Maine Coon Cat Behavioral Problems

Maine Coons are often well behaved, but there are some kinds of behavioral problems that can occur.

Here are some common behavioral problems in Maine Coons, as well as the common reasons behind them:

1. Biting

This problem can manifest in two ways:

  • Biting out of fear or anger
  • Biting due to play

If it’s the first of the two, then your cat is likely feeling insecure and scared, and you should work hard to socialize your cat and make it feel safe around you.

If your cat is biting due to play, then you’ll need to encourage your cat to bite toys instead of you!

2. Destruction

Maine Coons need a lot of enrichment, and if they don’t have enough places to climb, toys to bat around, or space to run, then they can become bored and destructive. So make sure you buy one of these extra-large cat trees, to enrich your Maine Coon cat’s life.

They might chew on furniture or cords, scratch, or even dig in potted plants!

You can avoid this by giving your cat more enrichment and playtime.

3. Spraying

Spraying is a territorial behavior where cats urinate to mark their territory.

This usually occurs in unspayed cats, but it could also happen with cats who feel threatened by too many pets, or who live in a small space.

If you are not too sure when the best age to neuter a Maine Coon, make sure you read my article ‘Best Age To Neuter A Maine Coon Kitten‘.

4. Excessive Vocalization

If your cat meows way too much, especially for food, then it’s because you accidentally encouraged this behavior.

Should your cat’s vocalization becomes too much, you can curb it by giving your cat what it wants only once it’s quiet, and ignoring your cat while it’s meowing.

How To Discipline A Maine Coon Cat

Cats are trickier to discipline than dogs, and that’s because discipline doesn’t really work on them.

Dogs are able to associate a negative stimulus with their behavior, while cats are more likely to become upset with you for making loud noises or squirting it with a spray bottle.

Instead, cats learn best by redirection and positive reinforcement.

For example, if your cat tends to scratch the same armchair, get a scratching post and place it right next to where your cat likes to scratch. Then, the next time your cat scratches the furniture, gently place it at the scratching post, and give it plenty of praise and treats for using the scratching post.

Here are 13 Hacks To Stop Maine Coon Scratching Furniture.

This form of redirection and positive reinforcement works wonders for just about every behavioral problem known to cats!

Why Does My Maine Coon Stare At Me?

It might seem creepy if your cat stares at you a lot, but it’s rarely a reason to be concerned.

Cats like to remain observant and curious, so they often stare at people or objects for long periods of time.

Some cats also stare if they want attention or food.

Conclusion

Like everyone else, my cat’s hissing and growling at me made me upset at first.

If you’re wondering, why does my Maine Coon hiss at me, then the underlying problem is usually quite easy to fix.

Cats hiss out of fear and insecurity, so if your cat is hissing, then it’s time to find the root problem and fix it.

Maine Coons often hiss due to stress, big changes, disrespected boundaries, loneliness, boredom, territoriality, or even underlying illness or injury. Consider your cat’s environment and work together to make your cat feel more comfortable and secure.

Related Questions

Why Does My Maine Coon Meow At Night?

Excessive vocalization at night could be your cat’s way of asking for food or attention. Sometimes, excitable cats get “zoomies” at night, where they run around and make a lot of noise.

Maine Coon Central

Hello! My name is Katrina Stewardson, and I’m a self-confessed CRAZY CAT LADY! I've been in love with the Maine Coon cat breed ever since we welcomed an adorable male Maine Coon kitten into our home 9 years ago. We called him 'Pippin', but he also goes by the name ‘Pipsteroo’! Our enormous, kind-hearted cat genuinely thinks he's a dog and has convinced me that cats are Man's True Best Friend!

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