Why is my Savannah Cat Hissing?

Are you baffled by the hissing sound made by the Savannah cat? And now you seek the reason why it does make the sound?

If yes, then you’ve stumbled into the right page to discover why this creature makes this sound and of course what to do.

Reasons why a Savannah Cat is Hissing

The Savannah Cat is a species of cat derived from cross-breeding the Serval and domestic cat. Just like all hybrid animals, it possesses the characteristic traits of its ancestors.

This means some features you see in the Savannah breed of cats are inherited from their parents, either the Serval or the domestic cat. An example of this feature that this article will focus on is hissing.

Hissing is a peculiar trait of the Savannah cats obtained from their Serval parent. While this sound could sometimes come naturally since it’s distinctive of one of the ancestors, it could also be used to express mood.

But how do you know whether or not it’s natural? Well, keep reading to decode this!

Top 4 Reasons Savannah Cats Hiss

Here are the 4 common reasons why your Savannah cat hisses:

1. As a Warning Sign

One way that the Savannah cat expresses aggression is by hissing. It makes the sound to scare away or send a warning signal to an entity which could be a human being or animal.

As we all know cats are territorial in nature, so when they encounter something frightening, they hiss as a form of defense and the Savannah cat isn’t an exemption.

Mind you, there are other characters that accompany the sound like the raising of claws and wide opening of their sharp teeth.

When you notice this, then you should understand that the cat is sending a warning signal that it despises the event occurring at that moment.

2. To Show Irritation

Irritability is amongst the characteristics traits of all living organisms and they’ve all got one or more ways to respond to it.

Just as humans would cry or shout when they are in deep pain, cats would hiss in response to any irritation. This sound would be made persistently.

3. Unfamiliarity

Cats take note of everything around them, whether living or nonliving. When they discover something new, they respond with a hissing sound.

For instance, when you bring a new item close to your cat, it gets nervous and hisses to show that it despises the item.

Also, the sound could be prompted by whether of the same species or another.

4. To Seek Attention

No doubt, pets love attention, and when they do not get it, they make a sound. Like the dog would sometimes bark to seek the attention of its owner or parents, in the case of a puppy, the cat would hiss to call for the attention.

What to Do if your cat hisses?

As discussed before now, hissing is a trait that the Savannah breed of cats inherited from the Serval ancestors and they could make the sound for no reason.

Also, they hiss to express their feelings. However, unless you’ve studied your cat, you can’t tell whether or not the hissing sound is natural.

But as experts in the field, here are some things you could consider doing when you notice your Savannah cat is hissing:

Give the cat space

When you notice your cat hissing, the first thing you need to do is give it space as the sound is often made to signal aggression or threat.

Allow the cat sometimes to get over the situation and calm. Holding it could make it feel insecure or threatened and this would do no good but cause it to continue making the sound. So it’s better to ignore it for a while.

Once it’s settled, you can try to coax it over to your side with its favorite meal. Mind you, while doing this, do not make eye contact with the cat until you are certain it’s completely relaxed.

Notice the body language

If you still notice the hissing sound after employing the tip above, then you should move close to the cat.

You never can tell if it does need your attention but your interaction with it could signal something.

Try to notice how it responds via its body language. If the hissing stops, then it needs your attention. And if not, it means the cat is in severe pain.

Examine the cat to see if any cut or injury. Should you notice, do not hesitate to seek medical help. Just call on your veterinarian to come and check on it.

Frequently Asked Questions

Here are some extended knowledge questions and answers to help you understand the subject ‘Reasons why a Savannah cat is Hissing’.

Can I hiss back at my cat?

Whether or not you hiss back at your cat, it has no physical effect on them. However, it’s never a nice idea. You should at least show care.

Like every pet you know, cats hiss to communicate or express themselves.

While it has been listed that the sound could signal fear, threat, or pain, it’s imperative you pay close attention to the cat to confirm what’s wrong.

Should I punish my cat for hissing?

Well, this is a two-way answer. As we all know, punishments could be used to correct behavior, either in a child or a pet.

Also, it could complicate the issue thereby reinforcing the behavior. However, to be on the safe side, you shouldn’t appear at the scene of punishment so the cat doesn’t know that you are the one behind it.

If it does, you are exposing yourself to its wrath.


Now you know why Savannah cats hiss and how to deal with the situation.

However, the perfect way to interpret your cat hiss is to study the cat so you can understand what it likes and despises.

Also, you should take note of their responses to the situation. We hope the information gathered from this article was helpful.

avatar Noah
I’m Noah, chief editor at VIVO Pets and the proud owner of a playful, energetic husky (Max). I’ve been a volunteer at Rex Animal Rescue for over 2 years. I love learning and writing about different animals that can be kept as pets. read more...

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