Explained: Why Cats Stand Up on Their Hind Legs

February 09, 2018

Explained: Why Cats Stand Up on Their Hind Legs

Has your kitty been standing on her hind legs an awful lot?

Cats look majestic when they stand on their hind legs and they look cute when they walk around in that position!

But, why does your cat do it?

Well, there are several reasons why cats do that and, in this blog post, I'll go through the reasons why your kitty may be standing on her hind legs.

Let's begin.

  1. Warding off Predators

    Some cats stand on their hind legs when they are feeling threatened by a predator to make themselves appear as large as they possibly can. So, it is a kind of a survival tactic used by your kitty to ward off predators.

    In some extreme cases, you kitty may even shuffle along sideways while she’s in the upright position which is an additional attempt to look as fearful and as large as possible.

    So, it is a good idea to steer clear of your a cat on hind legs!

    And, yes, this tactic does actually work well when warding off predators.

  2. Head Booping

    Your average domestic cat will stand on her hind legs to get your attention and get some extra pets from you.

    Yes, cats love attention, too!

    Usually, your kitty will stand up on her hind legs after a long session of ankle brushing. They might want some food or for you to pet them on the head. Cute, right?

  3. To Reach You for Treats

    Cats are excited to get their treats, and they stand on their hind legs so that they can be closer to the treat and have it closer to their mouth.

    Some special need cats were born without their forelimbs, stand on their legs at all times. For some cats, even the sound of the bag of the treats is enough to have them stand up on their hind legs for some sniffing.

Why Munchkin Cats Stand Up

Munchkin cats have short and stumpy legs which are caused due to a genetic mutation. So, you can observe these kitties standing up on their back legs way too often too because they have a low center of gravity.

Special-needs Cats Stand on Their Hind Legs All The Time

There are a few special-needs cats for whom the process of learning to stand and getting about on just their hind legs isn’t just an eye-catching move — it’s a necessity.

There are a lot of thesekangaroo cats, as they’ve been named, who are now the stars and advocates on the social media scene. The grandiosity titledLil Bunny Soux Rouxwas actually born without her front legs but has now become anInstagram sensation thanks to pictures of her hopping around like some sort of marvelous kangaroo-Tyrannosaurus-rex hybrid!

Roo is another celebrikitty and is quite famous on social media and is all about owning his kangaroo-cat status.

The kitty was born with radial hypoplasia, which stopped his front paws from growing and developing properly — but these days he’s more than happy hopping around for his legion of fans alongside his similarly famous kitty sister,Venus the Two-Face Cat.

How to Get Your Cat to Stand Up

Do you want your cat to stand up on her hind legs?


Well, you can teach your kitty to do that quite easily! In this section of the blog post, I will go through how you can teach your cat how to stand up.


Let’s begin.


  1. Get your cat's attention
    The first thing that you’ll need to do if you want to begin training your cat to stand is to get your cat to pay attention to you.  For that, you can use a trat to get your cat to focus and then, begin training your kitty to stand.
  • Start by holding a treat in front of your cat's nose. This will allow your kitty to smell the treat, and grab her attention
  • When your kitty begins to sniff the treat, simply pull it up. Your kitty will end up looking at you, giving you her attention

  • Encourage standing
    You need to look for ways to encourage your cat to stand. Then, say a command, such as "Stand up," and reward the behavior.
    • You can keep pulling the treat up higher. If you need to just simply place the treat near your kitty’s nose again to get her more interested. She may follow the treat as you pull it away a second time. As soon as she stands up, say a command such as, "Stand!" and give her the treat as a reward
    • You can also use toys. Dangly toys such as string toys, or toy mice that can be held above your kitty’s head. As soon as she stands up to reach the toy, say the command and offer her the reward

  • Reward the behavior when it occurs naturally
    You want your kitty to understand that you want her to stand up on cue.

  • Pay attention to your cat during her day-to-day activities. Keep in mind that cats may occasionally stand up on their hind legs if they're curious about something or trying to get your attention.

    You should try to reward this behavior as it naturally occurs to help establish a connection between the desired behavior, a command, and the reward.

      • If you see your cat standing up, say a command. You can say something like, "Stand up!" or "Beg." Then, reward the behavior using your chosen method

    • Be stricter about rewards over time
      At first, you can reward your cat for simply engaging in behaviors that are close to the desired behavior.

      For example, if your cat raises a paw, reward him. As time goes on, withhold treats until your cat completes the command.. Do not give your cat a treat, praise, or press the clicker until he's standing with both paws in the air.

      This will help establish how you want your cat to behave and teach him to stand up on cue

    Why does your kitty stand on her hind legs? Let me know in the comments section!

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