Why Do Cats Bite Each Other’s Necks? 7 Reasons for This Behavior

There are lots of reasons why cats bite each other’s necks. It can be a way of greeting, a show of affection or a way of asserting dominance.

If you’ve ever seen a kitten or adult cat that’s been scratching its neck, it may seem like an innocuous behavior. However, scratching the neck—which is the only part of the body that contains a vein—can actually indicate a medical problem. Cats scratch their necks because they’re trying to get rid of parasites, and if they don’t remove the parasites quickly, their necks can become inflamed and infected. The next time your cat scratches her neck, be sure to see a vet as soon as possible.

Today, we’re going to introduce you to the science of pain-induced aggression in cats. You’ll also discover why it’s important for you to be understanding and compassionate toward your cat.

Why Do Cats Bite Each Other’s Necks?

Play Behavior

why is my cat biting my other cats neck

If you have kittens, you’ll observe that they play in aggressive and hunting-like manner. Other kittens and things will be stalked, pounced on, bit, clawed, and jumped on.

This type of play teaches children important hunting and communication abilities that they will need as adults. They absorb crucial social cues and information about the world around them when they fight their siblings, albeit they might be overly enthusiastic at times.

During these playfighting sessions, cats may bite their necks, and while most cats will outgrow this tendency, others may not. It’s merely play biting if two cats bite each other’s necks but don’t appear to be displaying any actual aggressiveness.

Mating Behavior

The copulation between an intact male and an unspayed female is short, boisterous, and appears violent. The female will scream at the male and try to flee or fight him during the deed, so the tom bites the back of her neck. This keeps her in place while also ensuring his safety – at least until he’s through, since he has to get out of there!

While this is usual in certain settings, even with cats of the same sex, spayed and neutered cats will sometimes assume the mating attitude. This might be because they want to assert their power or because they like it. This activity may even be directed against toys or other pets.

Showing Dominance

In certain circumstances, a cat’s dominance over another cat is due to the introduction of a new cat into the home. When a cat is claiming territory, it can do it both indoors and outside. The neck is an accessible target and plays a role in their hunting instincts.

This dominance drive may also be shown between two cats that are familiar with each other. It’s generally a blend of play and dominance as long as the cat being bitten doesn’t appear to be in pain.

Grooming Behavior

why is my cat biting my other cats neck

If you’ve ever witnessed a cat grooming another cat quietly before abruptly biting the other on the neck, there are likely two separate behaviors at work.

It might be a case of overstimulation if the cat being groomed is biting. It can happen while you’re caressing your cat and be unexpectedly bitten. If cats are touched too much or petted for too long, they can get easily overstimulated. So, maybe they’ve had enough grooming and the other cat’s neck biting is a way of screaming, “Enough!”

The opposite habit is when the cat conducting the grooming bites the other cat’s neck unexpectedly. These might be impulses passed down from their moms, who would gently bite their wiggling kittens to hold them motionless when grooming them.

You should be able to discern the difference between a nibble and a chomp since all cats nibble on their fur while brushing to eliminate knots or dirt.

Hunting Instincts

The neck is one of the most susceptible locations on an animal when it comes to hunting. When attacking prey, all predators tend to aim for the neck, which contains the vulnerable jugular vein. Those inborn hunting instincts might occasionally kick in when you grab another animal by the throat.

Because it’s a component of learning how to hunt, these tendencies are more frequent in younger cats. When cats get carried away when playing, their predator instincts may surface, albeit generally without harming or injuring the other cat.

Fighting for Resources

Neck biting might be motivated by a desire for toys, food, or attention. Neck biting falls under the “expressing dominance” category. Because they believe they are safeguarding their belongings, dominant cats might claim resources as their domain.

Neck biting, on the other hand, may be followed by hissing, yowling, and full-fledged battles that go beyond play and into hostility. You’ll need to address these habits if one cat appears to be guarding the litter box or bites while you’re touching the other cat.

Medical Reasons

Only be concerned if your cat has recently started throat biting and has become more aggressive in general. It’s possible that your cat’s abrupt behavioral shift is due to a medical issue. A cat in pain may begin to misdirect his or her pain toward another cat by engaging in unusually hostile behavior.

Aggression can be caused by a variety of medical illnesses, including hypothyroidism, hormone abnormalities, and cognitive issues. Make an appointment with your veterinarian straight away if you detect a sudden change in your cat’s behavior or attitude.

Lack of socialization

why is my cat biting my other cats neck

A cat with inadequate socialization will be wary of other people and pets. Expect the resident kitty to react angrily when you introduce a new cat.

It might begin with a hiss, followed by a full-fledged animal bite on the neck. This is a very hostile habit that has to be dealt with right now. (For further information, see How to Introduce a Kitten to an Elderly Cat.)

Your aggressive cat is attempting to drive the newcomer out of its area by biting the other cat. If nothing is done, this will become a long-term issue.

It’s important to remember that a cat that isn’t socialized sufficiently will attack other humans and animals.

Remember that unsocialized cats are prone to misdirected aggressiveness, making them a danger to youngsters.

Predatory instincts

Bengal, Sphynx, and Egyptian Mau cats have more predatory tendencies than other cat breeds. If cats aren’t provided opportunities to exercise this tendency, they would most likely vent their frustrations on the other cat.

This can be deadly, since some cats will go directly for the prey’s throat, wanting to kill it.

The good news is that this issue is simple to resolve or prevent. Predatory inclinations can be reduced by providing engaging toys and playing.

How Can You Stop Aggressive Biting?

Start with socialization

An violent kitten is frequently isolated, which exacerbates the problem. It’s critical to gradually expose the cat to numerous stimuli.

Begin by bringing it outside and allowing it to smell about. The cat can then be taken on brief walks before being introduced to another cat.

Keep the kitty occupied

Cats who are bored will discover methods to occupy themselves. Unfortunately, one of them could be roughhousing the other cat.

To avoid this, provide your pet with toys, perches, scratching posts, and plenty of opportunities to play.

No sharing

why is my cat biting my other cats neck

If your cats’ possessions are the source of their biting, you should give each of them their own. Toys, beds, litterboxes, perches, and scratching pads are all included.

Also, don’t have your cats share a single eating bowl. This will keep them toe-to-toe all of the time.

Introduce them properly

Many cat owners make the mistake of pushing the current cat to meet the new cat. Keep in mind that cats are highly sensitive and possessive creatures.

They will see the intruder as a threat, and hence as a target for assault. Separate the two cats and let them a few weeks to get to know one other.

No punishments

If you have an aggressive cat, punishment and violence will only make things worse. Instead, utilize the incentive system to persuade your aggressive cat to be friendly to the other cat.

When the other kitty is present, offer the dominant cat goodies and pets. This connection will aid in the reduction of biting behavior.

Just make sure you don’t chuck the goodies on the floor and hand them out one at a time. Please read What Does It Mean When a Cat Bite You Hard for more information.

What does it mean when a male cat bites a female cat’s neck?

A male cat biting a female cat on the neck is frequently a protective behavior on the male’s side. When the two feral cats in our yard were mating, I’ve seen this several times.

While some pet owners may believe this is a forced meeting, male cats have a natural response to this. They do this as a kind of defense in the event that the female cat tries to assault them.

Mating produces agony to the female cat, which might lead to an assault.

When handled by the scruff, many cats retain their instinct to remain motionless (Learn here why my cat hates being held). The male cat chews the portion in an attempt to disarm the female feline.

Why does my cat bite another cat’s neck while grooming?

To get rid of stuff, some cats will bite the other cat they’re grooming. Unless the other kitty yells in agony, it’s typically a harmless bite.

Cats, unlike humans, do not have the ability to pick up dirt with their fingertips. Instead, they accomplish all of this while allogrooming by licking, nipping, and biting.

Grooming another feline is known as allogrooming, and it is common in multi-feline families.

It’s an indication that the cats are friendly and protective of one another. Find Out More About Grooming How to Care for a Cat Who Despises It

Why does my cat bite my other cat’s bum?

Biting another cat’s buttocks, like biting another cat’s neck, can be an indication of hostility. This is how cats demonstrate their dominance.

It might, however, be an instinct, which is regularly seen in healthy felines.

If the biting cat is a male and the other is a female, sexual aggressiveness should be considered.

Unless you do action to stop the cat, this behavior will continue.

Why does my cat bite my other cat’s tail?

Cats are known to be interested by the tails of other animals. Kittens, for example, will chase it endlessly.

If biting does occur, it might be for a variety of reasons, including being playful, bored, or aggressive. As a result, it’s critical to pay attention to the circumstances and what transpired before the cat bit.

A cat’s waving tail signals that it wants to play or attack. This is considered harmless behavior as long as the bite does not result in injury.

How do you tell if cats are fighting or playing?

It might be difficult to tell if your cats are fighting or playing. What you need to do is pay attention to the felines’ body language.

Cats will hiss, adore, bite, and pursue each other, whether they are fighting or playing. Fighting cats, on the other hand, will hold their ears back and puff their tails.

Raised fur can also be seen on the back to scare the opponent.

Play-fighting cats, on the other hand, will halt or take turns attacking. The cats will then generally roll around in circles to get each other’s attention.

It shouldn’t be a reason for concern until the contact results in both parties being injured. This is a typical kitten activity as they learn to establish their predatory character


You can keep them apart using a leash if they’re fighting. But don’t overdo it. The cat who has been attacked should not be forced to walk the length of the house with its nose and whiskers dragging along the floor. Also, they should not be kept on a leash for an extended period of time as they may develop other behavior problems.

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