Why Is My Cat Shaking?

Why Is My Cat Shaking?

We all love our cats so seeing them act in a way that is unusual or strange can be very concerning. One action that can cause great worry is if your cat starts shaking or trembling, especially if you’re not sure of the reason why.

Sometimes it may just be one part of the body, such as a leg, that shakes, but other times it can be a whole body shake. There are many different reasons why a cat might start shaking. Some of them are very easy to resolve and are nothing to worry about. Others, however, may need a trip to your veterinarian.

We will look at some of the most common reasons why your cat might be shaking. Hopefully, this will help you figure out why your cat is shaking and what you can do to help your beloved cat.

Fears Or Anxiety

Most types of animals can suffer from phobias and anxiety in just the same way that humans can. In many cases, these fears and anxieties can show themselves in nervous shaking.

In the case of cats, some of the most common situations that will cause your cat to shake through fear are those with loud noises, such as thunderstorms and fireworks. Cats are very sensitive to noise and they hear these loud noises in a way that humans can’t. Cats can also have a variety of other fears as well.

If you have a rescue cat it’s possible they have suffered trauma in the past that has made them afraid. Many cats can have separation anxiety too and this will make them shake if they’re left alone. Cats that are shaking through fear or anxiety may suffer from other symptoms. Look out for cats that run and hide or suffer from diarrhea.

Some of these causes are only temporary and will quickly stop. Try to comfort your cat through thunderstorms and fireworks and give them a safe place to hide. For more serious and long-lasting bouts of anxiety, it’s best to speak to your vet.

Irregular Body Temperature

Irregular Body Temperature

Another reason a cat may shake that is familiar to humans comes from their body temperature. If you’ve been outside in the cold for too long you will know what it is like to shake from the cold! If you’ve been sick and had a fever, you may have shaken through your heat as well.

The body temperature of cats should be around 100.5 degrees Fahrenheit to 102.5 degrees Fahrenheit. If your cat’s temperature is outside of this normal range, it can cause your cat to shake. In cold situations, make sure your cat has plenty of warmth and give them plenty of blankets so they can keep their body temperature up.

You should also make sure that your cat isn’t locked into hot cars or rooms during the height of summer as this can make them overheat. If your cat’s body temperature is only a couple of degrees out of the range, you may be able to help them get their temperature back to normal. However, if their temperature is very low or high, you should take them to a vet straight away.


This is one of the most common reasons why a cat might start shaking. You may recognize the term as it is commonly used with humans as well. Hypoglycemia happens when a cat has a low blood sugar level. The amount of glucose (sugar) in the blood is too low and it can lead to several different symptoms, including shaking.

It can happen if your cat goes without eating for too long but some cats are also more likely to suffer from hypoglycemia than others. It’s very common in kittens especially, as their small and young bodies take time to figure out how to process sugar correctly.

If you are raising a kitten, you need to be especially careful that they are getting a well-balanced diet at frequent intervals. They also need to be kept in warm conditions. For older cats that start shaking due to low blood sugar levels, you can often resolve this problem at home.

All they need is a few drops of something sugary, such as maple syrup or honey, added to their diet. Place some directly onto their gums every six hours and this will help them get the sugar they need very quickly. If you think your cat is suffering from hypoglycemia, you should consult with your vet. They will take a blood sample from your cat to see how much sugar is in their blood.

Chronic Kidney Disease

This is a much rarer reason for a cat to shake but it is still a possibility. As cats age, they may suffer from a loss in the function of their kidneys. These organs are responsible for cleansing our blood of toxins and if they don’t work properly, the toxins can start to build up.

This can lead to your cat suffering from a loss of appetite, unusual laziness, and some shakes. If caught early, it is treatable but if you leave it for too long, it can cause kidney failure. As always, if you find that your cat’s behavior and appetite change greatly for no apparent reason, make sure that you consult your vet to rule out anything serious.

Final Thoughts

In this article, we introduced four different reasons why your cat might shake or tremble. Many cats suffer from phobias and anxiety that can be caused by loud noises or trauma and sometimes, this can easily be sorted at home. Another cause that can often be easily resolved is if your cat’s body temperature is too high or too low.

Some cats shake because their blood sugar levels are too low. This is especially common in kittens so make sure your cats get fed regularly and add some extra sugar to their diet if they need it. If you’re ever worried or unsure about your cat, make sure to take them to your local vet.


Evelyn Baxter, Writer and Cat Expert

Evelyn Baxter, Writer and Cat Expert

Evelyn is an animal advocate, cat expert, and the proud mom of 2 rescue cats, Sugar, a beautiful fluffy tabby and Beebee, a black, fluffy beauty. Evelyn has studied animal care while volunteering at her local shelter. She loves all animals and wants to share the animal knowledge she has been lucky enough to gain together with knowledge from other experts with cat parents across the world.