Cats Walking Around In Circles? Here Is Why

Having clingy cats is OK as sometimes your cats want your attention or want to be herded to a particular place. Then you might notice your cat clinging to you, rolling on the ground, or walking around in circles.

This is an indication that your cat wants you involved in its activities.

But sometimes, circling around can also mean that there might be some vestibular disease or health concerns like ear infection, concussion, etc. So let us look at how to differentiate between when a cat is playful and when it is having any problem.

Here’s Why Cats Walking Around In Circles: 

The main motive of a circling cat is to get its human’s attention, but there might also be various health issues involved when a cat circles around or rolls on the ground.

Vestibular disease

Vestibular diseases in cats can range from chronic inflammation to bacterial infections to complex periodontal disease. These appear due to various health issues and can be bad for the cat’s health.

This further can cause complications such as tumors or polyps. So, if you notice your cat being disoriented and seems to walk in circles for more than a day, you must take it to a vet to run it through some tests.

The positive part of vestibular disease is that it almost always gets resolved on its own or at least within a few days under mild medication.

Once the primary cause is diagnosed and eliminated, then your cat will be fine. You just have to consult a vet to find out the real problem.


Although a cat walking in circles is not a sign of hypertension, it could be considered a symptom of other health problems that the cat might be suffering from.

In hypertension, a lot of blood runs inside the cat’s brain, making it confused, disoriented, and uncomfortable. Some cats can even lose consciousness and have seizures and muscle tremors. In that case, take your cat to the vet as soon as possible.

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Ear infection

Ear infections are prevalent amongst cats and other felines. And it can happen to any cat at any time via air pollutants, pollens, bacteria, etc.

Cats tend to groom themselves a lot, but sometimes this can be problematic. While licking off for cleanliness, a cat might accidentally pass the germs to its mouth then to its ears. Then it gets an ear infection.

The common symptoms of an ear infection are itchiness, redness, swelling, and inflammation. Sometimes the infection can grow, and you might see pus or discharge coming out of the cat’s ears.

If such, then you have to get your cat checked up. When the infection is left untreated, it can make your cat deaf. In the body of a cat, besides the cerebellum, the ear’s internal part helps maintain balance.

That is the main reason that cats walk in circles when they have an ear infection because they get disoriented as a result of balance issues.


Cats older than fifteen are most likely to develop dementia and feline cognitive dysfunction. The affected cats are generally disoriented or more frightened than usual and tend to walk in circles most of the time.

They can experience a dilemma of activities and seem confused with their whereabouts. They have a very disproportionate reaction to different stimuli.

Head injuries

Your cat might have hit its head or have had a significant concussion, and therefore it is now very disoriented and is walking in circles and losing its balance.

If you haven’t seen your cat getting involved in any kind of mischief, that doesn’t mean it hasn’t. It might have got into trouble in your absence.

Concussions are sometimes fatal and can leave permanent damage when left untreated. Take your cat to the veterinary hospital in due time if you suspect that you might have had a head injury.

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Brain tumors

One of the symptoms of brain tumors in cats can be walking around in circles. But it is not the only symptom.

Cats are more likely to have malignant tumors, and the primary symptoms are disorientation, frequent seizures, concussions, tilting of heads to one side for a long time, etc.

But there is one thing about cats: they mostly suffer from benign tumors. In both cases, the symptoms are more or less the same and require the doctor’s attention in both cases.


A cat can also have low blood sugar levels and can show up rarely, but walking around in circles is not a very specific symptom but can be helpful to detect hypoglycemia sometimes.

If your cat is hypoglycemic by any chance, then it might feel disoriented or might even have slight muscle tremors.

Cats that are suffering from diabetes might end up in a coma if they further suffer from hyperglycemia.

Hyperglycemia is most commonly caused by improper diet or can also occur due to liver or pancreatic disease, intestinal infections, hyperactivity, or hypothermia.

Try to make your cat avoid any such activity that can add to the symptoms of the disease and take it to the vet in cue time to avoid dangers.

Is it normal for cats to walk around in circles?

You might have experienced your cat walking around you in circles a lot. Well, this is normal, and your cat is trying to convey something to you.

Adult cats walking in circles, meowing, rolling on the ground is quite normal. They simply want to get your attention. They might want you to cuddle with them or want to play and spend time with them.

If they pull you to their food bowl, then that means that they are hungry and want food.

All these actions are playful and normal, and there is no need to worry. Sometimes a little whining and irritation can be a matter of mild concern and require a vet’s attention.

What does it mean when a cat is walking around in circles and then sits?

Well, a cat circling around can mean many things. It might simply want attention, or it might be disoriented. But sometimes, it can also be hunting-related.

A cat walks around in circles to find out the direction of the scent of the prey. After that, they sit for some time to get prepared to hunt. Hence it sits after walking around in circles.

It can sometimes also mean that your cat has a spinning head, a concussion, disorientation, or ear infection causing its imbalance. In that case, it would be best to visit a vet.

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All these behaviors of the cat are normal. As long as you don’t notice any symptoms, you don’t have to worry much. Give some attention to your cat as it wants it to be. Play with it and observe its behavior.

Take time to understand the pattern of behavior of your cat. If your cat is just playful, you need not be worried.

If you notice anything suspicious in your cat’s regular habits, then take the consultation of a vet as soon as possible. Follow the medication suggested by the vet. Hopefully, your cat will recover soon, and you can enjoy your time with your cat.

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