How to Get a Cat to Come to You? – 7 Easy Tips

Written by

Amy Sawy

Veterinarian. DVM


Joseph M. Plummer

Veterinarian, DVM, MVZ

how to get a cat to come to you

Do you have a stray cat you want to become friends with? Or do you want to train your cat to come to you? Sometimes a cat won’t listen to you when you call.

So, for cat lovers out there, here are some simple tips on how to get a cat to come to you.

All you have to do is make yourself perceived as non-threatening, use the sounds they’re familiar with, or assign a consistent call. Once you’ve got it down, the cat will approach you without showing aggressive and defensive behaviors.

Ways to Get a Cat to Come to You

1. Use approachable body language


Like many animals, cats will be reluctant to approach anyone who they perceive as a threat. So, if you want to make a cat come to you you must use approachable body language so it won’t hide from you instead.

Get a cat to trust you and once the cat feels safer and more comfortable around your presence, it will feel more compelled to approach. To do this, you must follow these steps.

Bring yourself up to the cat’s level by kneeling or squatting on the ground. Also, keep your direct eye contact with the cat to a minimum.

And don’t lean in too far toward the cat, giving it the impression that you’re intimidating it or trying to catch it.

2. Use a consistent call

If you want cats to understand that you want them to come to you, you must first choose a consistent call. The more you use this call, the more the cat will recognize that it’s the command you use to get a cat to approach you.

The best tip on choosing a recognizable call is to make sure it’s not something you say outside of when you want to call the cat.

Decide on a specific call that you’ll only speak to when you want the cat to come to you. For instance, you can say “Treats” or “Fish.” Or calls you may use could be random noises like “Ps-ps-ps” or even following the commands of dog owners and start whistling.

3. Do not force them to come to you

You cannot get a cat to come to your house if you are forcing it by running after or throwing treats towards the cat.

It’s important to remember that cats are not originally sociable creatures, and are completely content with minding their own business. Cats like having their privacy, and you must respect that. After all, a scared cat won’t come to you.

Don’t force cats to come to you by grabbing them when you call them, giving them a tight embrace, or giving consequences through punishment when they don’t listen to the call.

Instead, get kitty to come to you by keeping a good distance and waiting for them to come to you. Remember to go at a pace your cat is comfortable with, and not push any further.

4. Reward your cats for coming with treats


You just need to prepare cat treats of your choice

Like many animals, cats are more likely to come to you if they know they’re getting something in return. Start rewarding your cats for obeying your calls and establish training sessions for getting them accustomed to it.

It’ll be hard to do this method without treats, so go get some.

The more consistent you are with training sessions and rewards, the more your cat will be encouraged to come to you when you call. It’s more effective to start early and train a kitten.

  • Step 1: Call your cat over from a small distance and reward them with a treat immediately
  • Step 2: Go farther and repeat the same actions.
  • Step 3: Advance to calling them from different areas of the vicinity to get a kitten to come to you.

5. Let the cat control the pace

A cat wouldn’t appreciate it if you chased it around and pick up a cat without its consent. One of the best ways to get a cat to come to you is to wait. Don’t pressure your cat into approaching, and let them control the pace of when they want to arrive.

Here are some easy steps on how to do it:

  • Step 1: Lower yourself to the cats level
  • Step 2: Bring your forefinger forward, letting the cat take a whiff
  • Step 3: Put your hand on the ground and wait for them to approach

6. Use their sense of smell


You can use food with strong smells (i.e sardines)

Sometimes calling and sounds won’t do the trick, especially when they’re hiding in fear. In this case, you must use their sense of smell to get the cat to come out of hiding.

You can’t lure them out from under the bed or from the top of a tree with the smell of regular cat food or treats. This is the time to whip out food with pungent smells.

  • Step 1: Take your chosen food and heat it to increase the smell’s strength
  • Step 2: Place it outside or in an area you think they’re most likely to smell it

7. Increase the pitch of your voice

Cats have been seen to pay more attention to sounds with a higher pitch. So, if you want your cat to notice you when you’re calling, increase the pitch of your voice. Keep doing this until your cat has grown accustomed to it.

Cats are smart creatures and can familiarize themselves with their name. However, some cats pay attention to the pitch of your voice instead. A cat comes when called if they recognize your calling as the pitch that commands them to arrive.


Sound to make your cat come to you

Use sounds the cat is drawn to let them come to your calls.

Are there any noises that you realize the cat is drawn to every time they hear them? Usually, cats are drawn to the sound of food. It could be the shaking of a plastic bag, the clang of canned tuna, or even the sound of someone chewing.

Other owners may use a clicker as a sound to get a cat to come to them. However, in the absence of a clicker, you can use your mouth as an alternative and conjure the clicking noise yourself.

How to get a cat to like you?

If you want to get a cat to like you, the first thing you should do is not smother them. Cats like to have their boundaries respected. However, you mustn’t neglect them completely, instead, take some time to interact with your cat.

It also helps when you make an effort to make their surroundings comfy. Cats are clean creatures and like their home just the same. A quick way to get a cat to like you is to present them with the best food like treats.

Tips on more effective cat training

Do you want to train your cat to come to you? To provide the most effective cat training, a tip you can reinforce is to shorten the training timeframe (recommended time being around 5 minutes) and increase their frequency.

Giving your kitten consequences for disobedience won’t make a kitten come to you since cats are more akin to obeying through prizes. It’s important to make your cat comfortable and relaxed during training.

With the right training, you can even teach a cat to fetch.


It can get frustrating if the cat you’re attached to won’t come to you, but it could just be because they’re not comfortable or feel threatened by your presence. If you want to know how to get a cat to come to you, the fundamentals are simple.

Be friendly, don’t force them, and most importantly, familiarize them with both yourself and the command through socialization and training.

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