They say dogs offer unconditional love, whereas with cats you have to earn it. So true! Cats are paw-sitively more complex than dogs. Unless it’s mealtime, it can be difficult to interpret what your cat is trying to say. Below are six common ways our felines communicate with us.
Purring is the most common cat sound. While purring is most often a sign of content, it can also reflect other emotions as well. Purring may indicate being scared, sick or injured. Use body language to distinguish the root cause of purring. For example, if your cat looks relaxed and is on their back with their eyes half closed and tail mostly still – they are happy! However, if they are hungry, your cat may purr while whining or crying.
Meowing is a method only used to communicate with humans and not amongst cats. Cats meow because they have learned this to be the best way to communicate with humans. Each meow can mean different things and sound different amongst each cat; one type of meow can indicate that something is wrong, whereas another meow could mean that they are simply just lonely and need attention.
3. Tail Posture
In addition to purring and meowing, cats also communicate through body language. Similar to dogs, cats will use their tails to tell us how they feel. If a cat is happy, their fur will be smooth and their tail will be vertical, but if your cat is feeling scared or angry, the tail will be in the same position but their fur will be upright. If your cat’s tail is low or tucked this typically means that your cat is feeling anxious or insecure. These different tail postures help indicate how to perceive your cat’s body language.
4. Arched back
Also known as the classic “Halloween pose”, an arched back with high tail and upright hairs reflects an independent kitty! Your cat is asking to be left alone. Your cat may feel threatened, and it is best to ignore them until they calm down.
Believe it or not, blinking is also a form of communication. Blinking long and slow reflects a high level of comfort – they trust you! Try blinking back!
6. Rubbing against you
Cats have multiple scent glands on their heads, located around their mouth, chin, and on the side of the face, neck and ears. When your cat rubs against you (also known as bunting), they are marking you with their scent as a sign of affiliation. This is also one way they communicate their love for you!
Cat’s are often misunderstood, so it is important to pay close attention to the way your cat is trying to communicate. By taking more notice to your cat’s behaviour, you’ll improve your bond and improve your relationship!
Do you have any questions? Comment below and we’re happy to help!