Why doesn't a cat let you pet her?

by Shawn

I want to know something about cats. There is this really cute cat who always comes up to my door and I would feed her some milk. She would sit there the whole time, but wouldn't come in nor let me pet her nor let me get closer to her.

She would sit in front of the door and just stare at me but won't let me pet her. The closer I would get, the more she would go back, but come back to the same spot.

Why doesn't a cat let you pet her even though she would sit near you and stare at you?

What is the reason as I'm not aware much of cats' behaviors.

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Cautious kitty
by: Kurt (Admin)

Here's one possible explanation for this cat's behavior...

Cats are cautious, and they are opportunists. They'll take advantage of the opportunity to get a drink from you but remain cautious about your intentions.

Cats are often said to have "one foot in the wild" and they haven't been domesticated that long. In the wild, cats are predators, but they're also prey for larger animals. They play both roles.

As prey, they have to be cautious, as one wrong move can get them killed. Trusting too much too soon can be fatal.

People who have tried to win over stray cats have sometimes had to wait months or years in order for the cat to trust them enough to touch them. In the extreme case, some cats are never that comfortable with being touched.

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