Why Does My Cat Meow When I Sneeze 

Why Does My Cat Meow When I Sneeze? Is It Scared? 16 Facts

If you’ve ever sneezed in front of a cat, you may have noticed that it reacts in a very strange way. When their owner sneezes, some of them hiss, and some of them run away. Usually, cats meow when their owners sneeze, especially if the cat is very comfortable with the owner.

Then, why does your cat meow when you sneeze? Even though cats can’t talk, it’s hard to say for sure why they act the way they do.

However, cat experts have made some very strong guesses about why your cat acts this way. Here are 4 reasons why your cat might meow when you sneeze.

What Does A Cat’s Meow Mean?

Most people call the sound a cat makes a “meow.” You don’t have to own a cat to know what it sounds like.

Cats almost never meow at other cats, which is an interesting fact. When kittens need help, they meow to their mothers. As they get older in the wild, they slowly lose the urge to meow.

On the other hand, cats that have been tamed tend to keep their desire to meow. This could be because cats that are kept as pets get to live like they are always having babies.

In other words, their owners always take care of and pamper them, and they don’t seem to mind.

Most of the time, when a cat meows, it just means it wants something. Cats meow when they want something, like attention, food, or time outside.

Meows can also mean that the cat is happy to see you, almost like the cat is saying, “Welcome home!” every time you come home from work.

Why Does My Cat Meow When I Sneeze 

Meowing can also be a sign that your cat is lonely or sick. Older cats meow, especially as they start to feel their own age.

In the same way, cats can meow at their human owners to show that they are annoyed or startled. This is probably what your cat is doing when it meows after you sneeze.

Cats and Loud Noises

Cats are mostly kept as pets, but even though they have cute paws and soft fur, they are hunters at heart.

This lets their ears change so that they can hear even the quietest sounds very clearly. Their good hearing lets them hear prey from far away.

At the same time, bigger cats might eat smaller cats, like the average house cat. Because of this, people can act quickly and decisively in situations that could be dangerous.

Or, to put it another way, cats usually run away whenever they feel like they are in danger.

Because cats have sensitive ears and tend to run away when they are scared, a sneeze is a big deal for your kitten. When you sneeze, the muscles in your middle ear get tight. This lowers the sound level to protect their inner ears.

Many cats have different ideas about what’s going on. Some people feel excited, while others feel scared.

Because of this, a cat can tell you a lot of different things when you sneeze. Even though some of the reactions are good, most of them are bad because most sneezes are loud and sudden, which scares most cats.

12 Possible Reasons (and guesses) Why Cats Meow When We Sneeze Or Cough

1. Shocked And Startled

If someone scares you or if something shocks you, you might scream, gasp, or make any other sound.

Even your cat does the same thing. If you cough or sneeze, they meow when they are scared or startled by it.

Your cat might like a simple, quiet life, and if something changes that, it will probably start to meow.

Your cat usually doesn’t hear you sneeze or cough, so when they do, they are usually surprised.

Even though this doesn’t necessarily mean that your cat is scared of you now, it is still strange for your cat to hear you sneeze because it could be loud.

When you cough or sneeze hard, your cat will meow.

2. It Is Annoyed

Your cat can get upset easily. Cats get angry over things that might not seem important, like bad pet care, scratching their tails, waking them up while they’re sleeping, and not giving them enough food.

They meow to show how unhappy they are. This is what people usually say when they are upset.

Even excessive noise can irritate your cat.

Even though their meows sound different to us, we can’t explain why, but we do know that when you cough or sneeze, our cat gets upset.

If your coughing or sneezing is keeping your cat from sleeping or relaxing, it’s possible that they’re not surprised but just annoyed.

Then, your cat will start meowing to show that it is upset that you woke it up.

3. Mistaken For A Hiss

Your cat might think that your sneeze is a hiss and might meow or hiss back at you.

Because your cat doesn’t know what that sound is, it might think it’s a hiss. Then it may meow to find out why you’re upset with it.

Your cat would want to know what’s wrong, but you might just be coughing or sneezing all the time.

Your cat might not like it if you hiss at it, so it might start meowing at you. Hissing is a way for cats to say “back off” in their language.

4. Imitation

Your cat is smart, and after a certain amount of time with you, it can easily figure out how you act.

Since their world is limited to your house, they can easily pick up on your habits and responses, like when you cough or sneeze.

Your cat might like to act like you, so he or she might start to act like you.

If your cat meows after you sneeze, it might be trying to copy you. It might be trying to say “bless you,” which is what people say when someone sneezes.

5. It could be your cat saying “Bless You” in chatspeak.

Even though this could be us humans projecting our own thoughts and feelings onto our cats, I still think it’s possible that cats may respond to sneezes in a similar way to how we do, by making a little noise to let us know they heard it.

6. Or maybe your cat is just surprisedly asking you, “Ya’lright there buddy?”

We humans sometimes ask people who have had a strong sneeze or a series of allergy sneezes if they are okay.

This may be what cats are doing when they meow or chatter, but it’s also possible that we’re just projecting our own thoughts and feelings onto cats.

7. Mimicking or responding to your weird human noise.

This is a good question to think about.

Your cat may be responding to your sneeze with a meow or chatter because it thinks you are talking to it and is responding in kind.

This is especially true if your cat is a chatty one who often likes to “reply” to you or repeat what you say to it.

8. Disapproval of your loud human noise interrupting their nice cat peace.

People often grunt when they don’t like something to show that they don’t like it.

If a cat chatters, meows, chirps, or makes other noises right after sneezing, it may be because it is worried or annoyed by the sound of sneezing or a specific sneeze.

A loud sneeze is the only thing that can really break the peace.

Some people sneeze in a quiet way, but I’ve met plenty of people whose sneezes are, to put it bluntly, almost annoying.

If a cat only reacts to really loud sneezes and not to quiet ones—for example, if he or she only makes a peep after a sneeze from one person who has a huge sneeze—I’d say that’s a good sign that the cat is bothered by the noise and using the sound he or she makes after to show how bothered he or she is.

9. A cry in response to perceived hissing

This idea has been posted in a lot of places on the internet, and I do think there are cats that think sneezes are hisses, but I don’t think it’s most cats.

Since cats and people sneeze in the same way, I think most cats will know what a sneeze is when they hear one.

I’ve already said that some people sneeze loudly and inconveniently, which might sound like hissing to a cat. However, I’m willing to bet that most cats don’t think that a regular or mild sneeze sounds like hissing.

10. Just being polite in a social chat

Listen, people who have never had cats or who have never been around that special kind of cat that is a very social animal might not know this, but there are cats out there who meow back when people talk to them.

Some cats do this sometimes, but they only talk back to people once in a while. Most of the time, someone else will do this.

And I think that those cats have the best chance of being proof that this idea might be right.

If a cat already responds to human questions and talk about him or her with chatter and meows, I can see how a sneeze might be taken as a sound like someone talking to the cat, and the cat might just be talking back.

11. Scolding you back

Even though this seems unlikely, it’s fun to think about what a cat would think if you sneezed at it like you were scolding it. The “meow” is basically an angry “no you!” or “right back at you!”

12. Asking if you’re mad at them

It could be a quiet “Hey, are you okay?” or a soft whimper if your tiny furry baby isn’t the type to answer back loudly.

Which Are The Other Weird Reactions Of Your Cat To Sneezing?

When you sneeze, your cat might not just start meowing. It might also do other strange things.

Every cat is different, and when they sneeze, they react in very strange ways. Here are some other strange things that may happen when you sneeze around your cat.


Some cats make a strange chirping sound when they see a bird or a squirrel. No one knows for sure why cats make this sound. People used to think that cats chirped when they wanted to scare away their prey.

More research, though, shows that cats chirp when they are excited. So, when they see a bird or a squirrel, they chirp because they are happy.

If your cat is used to being around you, your sneezing might get them excited. This is a common response to sneezes, even though it happens less often. They may think you are trying to play with them because of the loud noise, which makes them chirp.

Run Away

This answer is a little bit easier to understand, but many cats run away when you sneeze. That’s because the sneeze startled them, which made them run. We’ve already said that cats don’t like loud noises.

When you sneeze, especially if it’s loud, it can scare the cat. Because of this, they run away from the sound source.

Even if the cat knows you, the noise could startle it and make it run away when it hears you coming.

What Can You Do About It?

If you sneeze and your cat meows or acts in some other way, you might not be able to do much about it.

That’s because the cat’s reaction to your sneeze is more instinctive than planned. There’s not much you can do to change how your body reacts.

If you think your cat is really scared when you sneeze, you can try to get it used to the sound slowly. You can do this by pretending to sneeze around them and giving them a piece of their favourite treat if they stay calm.

This will show kids that sneezing isn’t really that scary. But cats are smart, so if you really want this to work, make sure the cat can’t guess the treat before the “sneeze.”

This means he didn’t hear you reach for it, see it, or smell it. And to get the best results, you have to do it quickly, like how a sneeze comes on quickly and out of the blue.

If your cat meows when you sneeze, it’s probably nothing to worry about. Since they aren’t running away or acting violently, it’s likely that they are just responding to you like anyone else would.

Most of the time, you don’t need to worry about getting your cat used to your sneeze.

Why Does My Cat Meow When I Clear My Throat?

Your cat’s only way to talk to you is to meow, so it will do that no matter what.

Even if it sounds like a big sneeze or your voice when you clear your throat, the sound will be a meow.

Your cat likes quiet places, so if you make a loud noise like clearing your throat, it might bother your cat. In response, your cat might meow.

But if your cat doesn’t react to mild sneezes or voices clearing the throat, the problem is the loud noise.

But if it also moves when you make soft sounds, the problem is with something else.

If you cough or clear your throat quietly, it may sound like your voice is hissing.

So, if someone coughs or sneezes, your cat might think that person is a threat and act mean toward them.

If your cat meows in response to a chatter and someone is sneezing close by, your cat might think the sound is a chatter and start meowing.

Why Does My Cat Stare At Me When I Sneeze?

When their owners sneeze, many cats don’t meow. Instead, they just look at them. This could be because they are startled or because they are used to the sound.

Your cat might be looking at you to see if everything is okay.

Why Does My Cat Meow When I Sneeze 

Does My Cat Understand Sneezes?

No, your cat won’t understand when you sneeze unless you do it a lot. If the sneeze is very loud, your cat might jump up and try to get away. When your cat hears a loud sound, the small muscles in the middle of its ear will tighten.

This will help your cat block out some of the sound and protect its inner ear.

When your cat sneezes, it doesn’t have enough time for its ears to protect its sensitive inner ear from the sound.

Your cat wouldn’t know what your sneeze means, but it might connect it to something terrible it has been through.

Your cat doesn’t like loud noises, but we don’t know why. It is thought that it could be because of how it grew up.

Talk to your vet if you think your cat’s strange reaction to sneezing is because of something that scared it in the past.

Why Does My Cat Attack Me When I Sneeze?

If you suddenly sneeze, the loud noise will startle your cat and make it react.

Your cat can run away, meow, or even try to bite you.

Your cat’s ears are sensitive to sound, so it might be surprised by your sneeze. So when your cat sneezes, it gets angry and might attack you.

But the attack won’t last if they realize you haven’t hurt it.

If you sneeze, your cat might get mad and bite you, which could cause you to lose blood. Your cat might also hear a hiss when you sneeze.

If your dog acts hostile all the time, you should take it to the vet.

Why Does My Cat React When I Sneeze

Your cat reacts when you sneeze because it is a sudden, loud sound that might scare them and make them do something.

How they act, though, may depend on the cat. Your cat can do anything, from running away to attacking you.

People can hear you sneeze, but think about what your cat must hear. Cats have sensitive ears, so a loud noise like a sneeze will scare them.

Also, the sound comes on quickly. Your cat doesn’t know that you’re about to sneeze, but you do.

When you think about it that way, it makes sense that when you sneeze, your cat moves. But that activity will depend on your cat’s personality, so make sure to stay on your toes!

Why Does My Cat Attack Me When I Sneeze

When you sneeze, your cat might think you look like something it wants to eat.

If you’re not a person, it’s likely that you don’t know what a sneeze sounds like. Just think about what your cat might be thinking when it hears you sneeze. Your cat might not know what you were making, so it might attack you.

Depending on how your cat usually acts, it may attack you as a game or because it wants to hurt you. If your cat knows how to hunt, the attack might be a little more serious than if it were just playing.

Why Does My Cat Cackle When I Sneeze

Your cat might cackle after you sneeze because it is reacting to the sound you just made.

People and cats alike can make some strange noises. Your cat might make a cackling sound when you sneeze. We can try to come up with some ideas, but there isn’t a clear reason why cats act this way.

One of the best reasons why your cat laughs after you sneeze is that it is trying to copy the sound you just made.

Cats can also sneeze, but they can’t do it when they want to. Instead, they make a sound like the one you just made.

Listen to how close they came to making the same sound you just did the next time you sneeze near your cat and it laughs back.

Why Does My Cat Run Away When I Sneeze

Your cat runs away from you when you sneeze because you scare it.

Let’s try to picture this. You’re taking a nice nap in the middle of the day. You finally found the most comfortable way to sit. The house is quiet, and you have no worries at all. Then it was “ah-choo!” and you would probably run too.

When you sneeze in a room where your cat is, it often runs out of the room because it is scared by the sudden, loud noise it wasn’t expecting.

Especially if your cat was asleep for a long time, it’s likely that it didn’t hear or expect the noise. But don’t be afraid. I’m sure that your cat will be back before you even stop sneezing.

Why Does My Cat Chirp At Me When I Sneeze

When you sneeze, your cat might think you are a meal.

If your cat makes a chirping sound when you sneeze, it might think that the noise you’re making is coming from the animals your cat hunts.

I mean, let’s think about this. When your cat looks out the window, he may chirp at the birds or squirrels he sees. When you sneeze, the same thing happens.

Your cat knows you’re not a bird or a squirrel, but if it stays inside, it might not know what these sounds are. Your cat might think that when you sneeze, it sounds like one of the animals they see out the window.

Your cat might not know exactly what kind of animal is making the noise he just heard, but his instinct tells him to chirp at it.

Why Does My Cat Meow When I Sneeze 

Why Does My Cat Come To Me When I Sneeze

When you sneeze, your cat comes to you because it thinks you are hurt.

Your cat may not know what a sneeze is or what it does for people, but when it hears you sneeze, it thinks you are hurt. Because of this, your cat will run into any room you are in. Your cat may not stay for long.

He or she might just be stopping by to see if you’re okay. Your cat cares about you and wants to make sure you are doing well. You and your cat have a close relationship, so even a sneeze could scare your cat.

Now, if only everyone would be so nice when you sneeze!

Why Does My Cat Chatter When I Sneeze?

When you sneezed or coughed, your cat would chirp. The way your cat acts is normal.

We may have noticed that cats usually talk when they see birds out of a window. This is something that your cat does all the time.

When they see birds, they talk because they might be trying to copy the sounds the birds make and the way their beaks move.

By making so much noise, they confuse the bird and give your cat a chance to sneak up on it.

Your cat might also meow when they get scared or feel a rush of adrenaline from something.

Cats talk when they fight or go after prey.

So, this also shows us that when you sneeze, your cat is startled, which makes them meow.

Your cat has very sensitive ears, and if you sneeze loudly and unexpectedly, it could cause a rush of adrenaline and make it start to chatter.

If you keep sneezing, your cat might get upset and start to chatter in response.

So, try not to sneeze near your cat to avoid upsetting it.

Keep your cat in a place where things like this won’t bother it.


Even the most well-adjusted cats can sometimes be startled by a sneeze. If your cat meows after you sneeze, it’s probably scared, mad, mistaking your sneeze for a hiss, or just copying you.

No matter what the reason is, the fact that the cat stays in the room tells you a lot about how much it trusts you. Since sneezing can be so scary for a cat, any cat that stays in the room and meows in response shows that it trusts you and knows you won’t hurt it.

Frequently Asked Questions

My Cat Cries When I Sneeze, Why?

When you sneeze, you might wake up your cat or stop it from relaxing. Instead of being scared, it looks like your cat is annoyed by it.

They will start meowing or wailing, displaying their pain.

Why Is My Cat Reacting To My Sneeze?

Your cat is reacting to your loud and unexpected sneeze. It could scare your cat.
If your sneeze is loud for other people, it could hurt your cat’s ear if it is too loud for it.

Why Does My Cat Come To Me When I Sneeze?

Your cat thinks that when you sneeze, you hurt yourself, so it comes over to help you.
So every time you sneeze, your cat can be startled at first but later come to you out of concern.

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