Decode Your Cat’s Behavior: 17 Cat Behaviors Explained (2024)

    RD.COM Cats

    Decode Your Cat’s Behavior: 17 Cat Behaviors Explained (1)Wendy Rose GouldUpdated: Apr. 12, 2023

      Wish you had a secret decoder that explained strange cat behavior? We're breaking down a feline's most confounding actions.

      Our editors and experts handpick every product we feature. We may earn a commission from your purchases.

      Decode Your Cat’s Behavior: 17 Cat Behaviors Explained (2)Chris Winsor/Getty Images

      What is normal cat behavior?

      Kids may say the darndest things, but it’s felines that really throw us for a loop with their odd cat behavior! From kneading on soft blankets to knocking things off tables to scratching our brand-new furniture, they tend to induce an equal amount of “awws!” and “oh no’s!” This cat behavior guide breaks down all the above and more, so keep reading. You’ll also want to read up on why cats love boxes, why cats hate water, and why cats purr. Also, check out this guide to cat body language to see what your feline is trying to tell you.

      Decode Your Cat’s Behavior: 17 Cat Behaviors Explained (3)RD.com, Getty Images (3)

      Decode Your Cat’s Behavior: 17 Cat Behaviors Explained (4)Anita Kot/Getty Images

      Purring

      Purring is something that pretty much every single cat does, but interestingly we know less about why cats make this noise compared with other noises they’re famous for (like hissing or chirping). The reality is that purring has many different meanings.

      “Cats often purr when they’re feeling relaxed, but they may also purr to self-soothe if they are feeling stressed or are injured,” says JoAnna Pendergrass, DVM, a veterinarian based in Atlanta. “When kittens are born, mama cats purr, creating a vibration to guide kittens to mom’s nipple to nurse. Cats will also purr to socialize with other cats and communicate with their owners that they want something.”

      Decode Your Cat’s Behavior: 17 Cat Behaviors Explained (5)ramustagram/Getty Images

      Showing its belly

      Here’s an all-too-familiar scenario: Your sweet Max stretches out and shows off his fuzzy belly, which makes you want to reach out and give him a little pat or affectionate scritch. Only this is met with a rescinded offer—perhaps even a batting of the paw or a light bite. Strange cat behavior, indeed!

      “When cats expose their bellies to us, they are saying they trust us. But when we take them up on this ‘offer’ by rubbing their bellies, they may retract it with a bite or a scratch, as it was only meant as a form of communication,” explains Sam Meisler, DVM, a veterinarian and founder of PetWellClinic.

      If you establish even more trust you may be able to go in for the pets without reprimand, but be gentle and keep in mind this is a physical expression of trust more than it is an invitation. You may not recognize these subtle ways that your cat is showing affection.

      Decode Your Cat’s Behavior: 17 Cat Behaviors Explained (6)Linda Raymond/Getty Images

      Wagging its tail

      When a cat “wags” its tail, it’s not the same joyful response you get with a happy dog wag. In fact, it may mean the opposite.

      “A cat tail wag can be more of a warning,” notes Evelyn Kass, DVM, a veterinarian with Pet Nutrition Doctor. “The tail wag is a sign of heightened excitement, annoyance, or frustration. The thrashing tail generally means ‘stop what you are doing or I am going to get angry and might bite you.'” She adds that when the tip of the tail is wagging, it is often a sign your cat is ready to pounce on their favorite toy, or perhaps on your leg.

      Decode Your Cat’s Behavior: 17 Cat Behaviors Explained (7)Balzs Kemendi/Getty Images

      Napping

      You might have noticed that your cat loves napping and seemingly sleeps all the time. “Generally, this trait has developed as an evolutionary advantage so that they can conserve energy for hunting. Of course, the domestic cat does not need to hunt, however the genetics are still there,” explains Dr. Meisler. “And they do like to sleep in warm areas. Keep in mind that a cat’s basal temperature is higher than ours by at least a couple of degrees.” That helps explains why they like to soak up the sun or sleep on warm surfaces, like your laptop.

      Decode Your Cat’s Behavior: 17 Cat Behaviors Explained (8)Jean-Philippe Tournut/Getty Images

      Chirping

      In addition to purring and meowing, another common cat noise is chirping. You might find your cat chirping as it stares out the window from the perch at a bird or when it greets a fellow feline. A cat’s chirp tends to mean one of two things: Its hunting instincts are activated as it spies a bird, bug, mouse, or toy. Likely this type of chirping is accompanied by its tail twitching back and forth and dilated pupils. Or, a cat may also chirp when it’s excited to see someone, be it a fellow cat…or you. Figure out why your cat stares at you.

      Decode Your Cat’s Behavior: 17 Cat Behaviors Explained (9)Kryssia Campos/Getty Images

      Rising early

      In addition to being active at dusk, cats are also known for getting the zoomies at dawn. This is probably a time when you’d like to get a little more sleep before your alarm goes off, but this cat behavior comes naturally, and your feline doesn’t care what time your alarm is set for.

      If you’re serious about curbing those early wake-up calls, start by installing blackout shades or blinds in your bedroom so the sun won’t rouse your cat. Then, stick to strict feeding times: once in the morning (but not right after you rise because then they’ll associate you getting out of bed with getting fed) and once shortly before you go to bed (to delay their hunger).

      Decode Your Cat’s Behavior: 17 Cat Behaviors Explained (10)Nataliia Pyzhova/Getty Images

      Knocking things over

      If you’ve spent any amount of time with a cat, you’ve likely seen them bat at something on a table until it falls off. Maybe it’s a drinking glass or perhaps it’s your phone. Though somewhat hilarious—and perhaps maddening—this is perfectly normal cat behavior. Dr. Kass says there are many theories about this, which include everything from boredom to attention-seeking to hunting to simply being playful.

      “Cats are naturally curious, and while dogs explore their environment with their mouths, cats are more likely to explore by touching and pushing an object with their paws,” says Dr. Kass. “They respond to the outcomes too. If something rolls, it may become prey ‘running away’ and they will chase. If you suddenly stop what you’re doing to run to your cat, there is a reward that can be tested over and over and over again.”

      Decode Your Cat’s Behavior: 17 Cat Behaviors Explained (11)pkline/Getty Images

      Scratching furniture

      Just like you clip and file your nails so they don’t interfere with typing or other daily activities, cats must maintain their claws. Scratching—which is a deeply ingrained behavior in cats—is one way they do so.

      There are also some other explanations as to why cats scratch. One is that they’re marking their territory. Cats have scent glands on their paws, and releasing the odor essentially allows them to “mark” objects as their own. Other reasons include releasing energy or excitement, and simply because scratching is fun and feels good.

      The best solution to keeping your cat from scratching your furniture is to give them something even better to scratch on, like a pad or cat tower. Rub it with a little catnip and give them a treat whenever they use it to encourage the behavior. You can also invest in some cat-proof furniture that actually withstands all the scratching.

      Decode Your Cat’s Behavior: 17 Cat Behaviors Explained (12)Volanthevist/Getty Images

      Licking you

      Another cat behavior you may have noticed is your pet licking you with its rough tongue. They do this for a few reasons, notes Dr. Pendergrass.

      “A cat will lick their humans to show care and affection. When your cat licks you, they are creating a special social bond with you,” she says. “This licking behavior stems from kittenhood, when a mama cat licks her kittens to groom and show affection.”

      Decode Your Cat’s Behavior: 17 Cat Behaviors Explained (13)FaST_9/Getty Images

      Licking itself

      Along with licking you, cats tend to lick themselves—a lot! This is because they’re self-cleaning creatures, and their grooming habits are quite impressive. Cats are born with the essential grooming tools: paws, a rough, barbed tongue, and saliva. This means you don’t need to worry about routine baths and grooming in the same way you do for a dog. Only in rare cases do cats need a bath. If you find yourself in that predicament, here’s how to do it without getting scratched.

      Decode Your Cat’s Behavior: 17 Cat Behaviors Explained (14)Philippe LEJEANVRE/Getty Images

      Bringing dead animals (or toys)

      You’re sitting there minding your own business, and here comes your kitty making all sorts of weird noises and carrying an object in her mouth. If you’re lucky, it’s one of her favorite toys, but cats are also known to bring their humans dead bugs, rodents, and birds.

      “Your cat may bring you a prey item—such as a toy or mouse—presenting it to you as a gift,” says Dr. Meisler. “This is your cat saying you are part of their pack and they want to make sure you are well fed.”

      Other reasons they do this could include trying to return the feeding favor for keeping their kibble bowls full, imitating what their mama cats did for them, or giving you their catch so that you can store it for later.

      Decode Your Cat’s Behavior: 17 Cat Behaviors Explained (15)Toshiro Shimada/Getty Images

      Meowing

      Scientists have identified more than a dozen different meows that cats make, each with its own meaning. In general, kittens use meows to communicate with their moms, but grown cats employ them solely to communicate with humans. Cats also use hisses, growls, squeals, and other sounds to talk to each other. More perceptive owners can probably tell a cat’s “I’m hungry” meow from its “I’m bored,” or discern “I’m hurt” from “I’m scared.”

      Some cat breeds are chattier than others, but if your cat goes from not-that-frequent to frequent talking, it could be a sign that something’s off. A vet visit can help you figure out the issue.

      Decode Your Cat’s Behavior: 17 Cat Behaviors Explained (16)Martin Deja/Getty Images

      Chewing cords

      Cats are playful creatures, and they’re especially drawn to things like ribbon, string, and cords. It’s not that they’re trying to be destructive or dangerous—it’s just that the cords are so accessible. Stow away the ones you’re not using, and cover the remainder in cord covers (you can find these at pet stores). You can also try applying bitter apple spray on cords, but dab it on sparingly, since consuming too much of the essential oils in it can make cats sick.

      If your cat persists in chewing cords even after you apply the bitter apple, take him or her to the vet to rule out any dental problems.

      Decode Your Cat’s Behavior: 17 Cat Behaviors Explained (17)Daria Kulkova/Getty Images

      Going outside the litterbox

      Cats actually prefer using litter boxes and are wired from kittenhood to “cover” their pee and poop, so when they do go outside the litter box, it’s a sign that something isn’t quite right. It could be something as simple as them not liking the location of the box or the type of litter you use. Or they may prefer it to be cleaner (just as we prefer to use a clean bathroom).

      Sometimes, a cat going outside the litter box signals a medical issue, such as a urinary tract infection (UTI). Your veterinarian can take a sample of their urine to determine if there’s an issue that needs to be addressed. Behavioral issues are another common reason cats don’t use the litter box. This might be the result of feeling territorial with other cats or not being as mentally/physically stimulated as they’d prefer.

      Decode Your Cat’s Behavior: 17 Cat Behaviors Explained (18)SilviaJansen/Getty Images

      Kneading

      Cat kneading goes by so many names: making biscuits, playing the piano, mashing potatoes, sleepy marching. However you refer to it, this cat behavior is downright adorable! There’s a reason cats do this, and it’s not just to be extra cute.

      “This behavior is all about love and comfort,” Dr. Pendergrass says. For example, a cat will knead its owner to show affection, or knead a blanket to create that perfect comfy spot to settle in for a nap. Kneading is also a self-soothing behavior for anxious kitties.

      Decode Your Cat’s Behavior: 17 Cat Behaviors Explained (19)Salima Senyavskaya/Getty Images

      Eating grass

      You feed your cat all the yummy kibble in the world, so what’s up with it eating grass? The truth is that we don’t understand it completely (the same goes for dogs eating grass), but experts have some theories. One is that they’re doing it to soothe their tummy, which can help with gastrointestinal upset or even help them with hairballs. It could also be a way for them to get certain nutrients they don’t have in their diet, or simply because it’s a tasty snack.

      Decode Your Cat’s Behavior: 17 Cat Behaviors Explained (20)bombermoon/Getty Images

      Rubbing

      This is one of those cat behaviors that every cat parent has seen a million times but perhaps isn’t quite sure what it means. Cats often rub against objects in your home, but they’ll also rub against you. What does this mean?

      They’re marking their territory, Dr. Kass says, and that includes you. “Cats have scent glands on their face that deposit unique identifying odors on the object they rub against. When they rub against you they are affirming that you are part of their family.” How cute is that?

      Sources:

      Originally Published: May 03, 2022

      Decode Your Cat’s Behavior: 17 Cat Behaviors Explained (21)

      Wendy Rose Gould

      Wendy Rose Gould is a Phoenix-based freelance lifestyle reporter who covers home, health, wellness and travel-related topics for people and their pets. In addition to having two kitties of her own, Wendy loves all animals and is always game for meeting new floofs. She holds a journalism degree from the Franklin College Pulliam School of Journalism and has a second bachelor's degree in Philosophy. You can follow her on Instagram @wendyrgould.

      Decode Your Cat’s Behavior: 17 Cat Behaviors Explained (2024)

      FAQs

      Why is my 17 year old cat acting weird? ›

      If your older cat starts acting differently, it might be a sign of an aging problem such as feline cognitive dysfunction (FCD). FCD affects over half of cats between the ages of 11 and 15, and as many as 85% of cats over age 16. It can cause problems with your cat's memory, awareness, and ability to learn new things.

      How do you read a cat's action? ›

      Playful
      1. Ears. A playful cat will have their ears up. The ears will point forward, and you might think they look especially alert.
      2. Eyes. Your cat will watch you or a toy intently while playing. ...
      3. Body. Cats like to play stalking games. ...
      4. Tail. Some cats will keep their tails down while getting ready to pounce.
      Aug 25, 2021

      What do the actions of cats mean? ›

      Cats are curious and territorial. They want the option to patrol and explore. She could also want your attention, or access to food. If your cat paws at your bedroom door at night, try giving her a bedtime snack or treat puzzle before bed, something to keep her entertained.

      How does a cat say hello in cat language? ›

      The head bump. It's their way of saying hello, by using the oil glands in front of their ears to greet you as if you're a cat and leave their scent on you. They see you as one of their clan, so bump them right back.

      How can I translate what my cat is saying? ›

      MeowTalk Premium subscription allows you to access all meow intents and translations. MeowTalk Premium also allows you to train the app to learn your cat's unique vocabulary, use Auto-translate mode, keep track of your cat's meow translation history, and store the precious audio recordings of the meows on your device.

      Why is my 17 year old cat yowling? ›

      Senior cats often yowl because they have hyperthyroidism, chronic kidney disease and/or high blood pressure. Other reasons for yowling in elderly cats include pain, often from arthritis, and senile cognitive dysfunction, sometimes called dementia. Fortunately, all of these problems can be treated.

      What should I expect from a 17 year old cat? ›

      Older cats hunt less, spend less time outside, are generally less active and sleep for longer periods. They can have a reduced or fussy appetite, be less keen to play or groom and be more vocal. They also tend to become more insecure and therefore potentially more dependent on you.

      At what age are cats most difficult? ›

      Cats are juniors until the age of 2, and like human children, may start to show a different temperament between 6 months and 2 years old, even progressing from the (sometimes) defiant 'Terrible Two's' to becoming a stroppy teenager!

      How do cats respond to yelling? ›

      Of course, your cat may understand that the change in your volume means something is different, but yelling may scare your cat or call too much attention to negative behaviors. Yelling may cause your cat to feel stressed and anxious, which can cause additional misbehavior.

      What does it mean if a cat licks you? ›

      Your cat is expressing her affection for you.

      Your cat's licking may be an affiliative behavior, which is a friendly, altruistic behavior. Mothers groom their kittens, and cats may groom one another, which is called allogrooming.

      Why do cats rub against you? ›

      Cats release friendly pheromones from glands in their cheeks and chin, so when your favorite feline is rubbing its face on you, it usually means they are marking you as a friend. “It's an affectionate gesture that can also be used as a form of greeting,” Dr. Jill E.

      What is your cat trying to tell you? ›

      Growling, hissing or spitting indicates a cat who is annoyed, frightened, angry or aggressive. Leave this cat alone. A yowl or howl (they sound like loud, drawn-out meows) tells you your cat is in some kind of distress—stuck in a closet, looking for you or in pain.

      How do you know if a cat likes you? ›

      Here are some common signs that your cat loves you:
      • Slow Blinking. Eyes are said to be the windows to the soul. ...
      • Headbutting. Your cat may bump their head against you or rub their cheeks against you to show affection. ...
      • Grooming. ...
      • Kneading. ...
      • Showing Their Belly. ...
      • Meowing. ...
      • Purring. ...
      • Greeting You at the Door.
      Feb 1, 2022

      How do cats convey sadness? ›

      Cats alter their behavior when they mourn much like people do: They may become depressed and listless. They may have a decreased appetite and decline to play. They may sleep more than usual and move more slowly, sulking around.

      How do cats say I love? ›

      Purring: When cats are deeply relaxed and content they tend to purr to self soothe. But when a cat rubs against you and purrs it is synonymous with saying “I love you.” Slow Blinks: When cats close their eyes in the presence of another animal or human it is a sign of trust, which is a fundamental aspect of love.

      What words do cats respond to? ›

      “When you talk to your cat, they probably respond most to your tone of voice. People tend to talk to their pets in higher-pitched voices, which are good at getting their attention.” AKA, your cat may like baby talk, according to a new study. Cats can also recognize noises that indicate food or attention is coming.

      How do you say I love you too in cat language? ›

      Go for the Slow Blink

      On the other hand, a soft gaze and slow blink signal relaxation and safety. You can say “I love you” to your cat by looking at them with relaxed eyes and slowly lowering your eyelids. Your cat may offer a slow blink in return, letting you know they love you, too!

      What's the average lifespan of a house cat? ›

      The average cat lifespan is between 13-17 years. Some lucky felines have been known to live 20 years or more—the world record holder for oldest cat on record, adorably named Creme Puff, lived to be a whopping 38 years old.

      How do you know if your cat is crying for help? ›

      Signs Of Obvious Distress

      Cats are typically very stoic animals, so if your cat suddenly seems to be in distress, it is a cause for concern. Howling, crying, hiding, and otherwise acting in a way that is out of character for your pet should alert you that something may be seriously wrong.

      How can you tell if a cat has dementia? ›

      As your cat gets older, there are signs of dementia in cats that you can look out for:
      • Lack of interest in playing.
      • Spatial disorientation.
      • Wandering away from home.
      • Disorientation or confusion.
      • Loss of interest in food and water, or change in appetite.
      • Changes in sleep patterns or sleeping too much.
      Dec 26, 2021

      Is 17 considered old for a cat? ›

      Time Flies for Humans and Cats

      By 12 years of age your cat is becoming a senior citizen, and by 15 she is considered "geriatric" (see chart below). While the average lifespan for a spayed or neutered house cat is 14-16 years, many felines are now living into their late teens and even their early twenties.

      Is 17 a good life for a cat? ›

      Indoor cats generally live from 12-18 years of age. Many may live to be in their early 20s. The oldest reported cat, Creme Puff lived to be an amazing 38 years old. Outdoor cats generally live shorter lives due to being more likely to be involved in traumas such as motor vehicle accidents or dog attacks.

      Is 17 years a good life for a cat? ›

      The average lifespan for a pet cat is probably around 13 to 14 years. However, although their lifespan varies, a well cared for cat may commonly live to 15 or beyond, some make it to 18 or 20 and a few extraordinary felines even pass 25 or 30 years of age.

      At what age is a cats personality set? ›

      By about two years of age, a cat's personality is fully developed, and it's easier to be sure what you're getting.

      How to discipline a cat? ›

      Species appropriate punishment such as “hissing” or the use of punishment devices such as a water sprayer, can of compressed air, or hand held alarm are better than using any physical techniques since they are less likely to lead to fear and retaliation.

      At what age are cats less affectionate? ›

      According to the kitten growth chart at Raising Happy Kittens, your kitty may become less affectionate during this time. But not to worry. Usually, cats start to mature and settle down after the eighteen-month mark, and by their second birthday your cat will have fully grown into their adult personality.

      Can cats tell when you're mad? ›

      This study shows that cats respond functionally to their owner's emotional stimuli when their owner showed “anger” or “anxiety”, and their stress levels were higher as compared to when they were shown “happiness”.

      How do cats express anger? ›

      Symptoms of angry cat behaviour

      An angry cat will be rigid, with tail held out stiff and straight or curled around and under their body. They will act very differently from usual – they could be silent, hissing, spitting or growling.

      Does a cat understand the word no? ›

      Just saying no is not good enough for a cat. They want to know what's in it for them. So give them something better or more interesting than the thing they are doing that you don't want.

      Where your cat sleeps on your bed and what it means? ›

      If your cat sleeps on your bed, he may choose a position that lets him see out your bedroom door more easily. If he's curled up in a ball under your bed or in a quiet corner, then he may be hiding. Cats who sleep under the covers might love being close to you, or they might be hiding to feel safer.

      What does it mean when a cat kneads? ›

      Kneading to convey comfort — Happy cats appear to knead to show pleasure. Cats often knead while being petted, or when snuggling into a napping spot. Your cat may also knead on your lap to show her love and contentment, and then settle in for a pat or nap. A stressed cat may knead to create a soothing, calm mood.

      What does it mean when a cat sleeps at your feet? ›

      When a cat sleeps at your feet, they keep your feet warm, but they may also be seeking warmth from you. Sleeping by or on your feet lets your cat be close to you, but also gives them the security of an easy escape when near the foot of the bed, couch, or chair.

      What happens if you cut off a cat's whiskers? ›

      But you should never trim them. A cat with cut whiskers will become disoriented and scared. “If you cut them, that's like blindfolding someone, taking away one of their ways of identifying what's in their environment,” says veterinarian Jane Brunt.

      Why do cats push their head into you? ›

      Headbutting is a way for cats to mark you with pheromones and bond with you. However, sometimes headbutting can be a way for cats to seek attention. As a general rule, cats like to be scratched under the chin and on the head, so a cat may just be presenting their head to you for some attention and good scratches.

      Why does my cat tap me with her paw? ›

      If your cat is kneading you, it is generally a sign that they are very contented and happy, so take it as a compliment! However, it can sometimes hurt if your kitty friend digs in with their nails! If your cat does this, you can try putting a towel or a blanket over your lap to protect it when your cat sits with you.

      Do cats try to talk to you? ›

      Cats do talk to their pet parents, typically using a meow to ask for her cat food bowl to be filled, or a whine to ask for more pets, and perhaps a hiss to tell you to back off. Some cat breeds, such as the Russian Blue and the Siamese, are very vocal and will chatter with you all day (and all night) long.

      What does it mean when a cat curls up next to you? ›

      When your cat is curled up near you, they're simply letting you know that they feel safe. This is your feline friend's way of letting you know that they trust you.

      How do you tell if a cat doesn't like what you're doing? ›

      When looking at body language, lowered ears and a tucked tail is a sign that the animal is uncomfortable in your presence. A very angry cat will have a puffed-up tail along with a crouched position.

      How do cats choose their favorite person? ›

      According to a study done by the nutrition company, Canadae, they discovered that the person who makes the most effort is the favorite. People who communicate with their cat by getting to know their cues and motives are more attractive to their cat companions.

      Why cats walk between your legs? ›

      Many cats are simply looking for attention, says Dr. Bamberger. Wanting to be fed, wanting to play or simply wanting their owners to stop and pet them are some of the reasons why cats may be underfoot or weaving between your legs, even when you are standing still.

      Can cats sense a good person? ›

      The author writes, “Although a cat may not care (as that word is generally used) about human morals, cats can and do distinguish between good and bad people, and are excellent judges of human character and emotion.

      What do cats see when they look at humans? ›

      The strange part of all of this is that cats actually view people as fellow cats. Some researchers believe cats look at us as big, slow, clumsy, uncoordinated cats, but others say they're not quite so judgemental. The good thing is, whether or not they're judging our balance and agility, they still love us!

      How do cats see human faces? ›

      Cats cannot differentiate between human faces and do not care how you look like. Unlike dogs, they would not even try to differentiate human faces. In an experiment conducted by an American university, the kitties could recognize their handlers less than 50 percent of the time.

      What code language is cat? ›

      The Cat programming language is a functional stack-based programming language, with an optional static type-system. Think Forth meets Haskell. Cat is heavily inspired by the Joy programming language.

      Can you translate human language to cat language? ›

      Human-to-Cat Translator actually performs audio analysis on your voice (for reals) and regurgitates carefully bastardized meows according to your input. Human-to-Cat Translator also includes a 16-meow soundboard for instant access to common cat calls.

      Can cats understand the word no? ›

      Just saying no is not good enough for a cat. They want to know what's in it for them. So give them something better or more interesting than the thing they are doing that you don't want.

      Why do cats speak Morse code? ›

      You've most likely heard your feline vocalize in way you might call “kitty Morse Code.” Cats usually do this when they recognize a bird while looking out of a window. Your feline could be baffled that they can't get outside to chase prey. They additionally might be excited and marginally bothered by the situation.

      Is there a universal cat language? ›

      There's no universal cat language or glossary to help decipher what your cat is saying, but folks are working on it. In fact, researchers in Sweden are in the midst of a five-year study, Meowsic, aimed “at understanding how cats and humans use melody and other prosodic features when they communicate with each other.”

      Do cats have a spoken language? ›

      Cats "speak" to each other through body language, communicating feelings and intentions through posture and facial expression as well as sound. Humans do this too, but are able to rely more on on verbal expression because of their ability to talk. Scent is also an important component of cat communication.

      Can cats mimic human words? ›

      "Cats can imitate nuances in their owners' voices, such as melody patterns, in order to be able to communicate better," Schötz told the Sydsvenskan newspaper.

      Can my cat understand two languages? ›

      While many cat owners will claim their pets have selective hearing, the Cat Protection Society NSW says that cats and kittens can learn languages other than 'cat'. “We've seen many cats at our shelter over the years who can understand and learn words in more languages than one.

      What is kiss in cat language? ›

      Cats only make eye contact with people they like and are even known to make 'eye kisses'! This is when a cat will stare with half closed eyelids and slowly blink, repeatedly. It's a gesture that can be reciprocated, so if you notice your cat giving you a 'kiss', why not give them one in return?

      How do cats say I miss you? ›

      Strong Desire for Affection Upon Your Return

      A cat's expression of affection is more subtle than a dog's, so pay attention. If your cat is permanently attached to your side, following you from room to room, and rubbing up against your legs, it's their way of saying: I love you, I missed you—pay attention to me!

      How do cats say I trust you? ›

      One simple way to know if your cat trusts you is if her tail stands straight up, especially when she sees you or walks toward you. Some cat experts consider it to be a “thumbs up” in cat lingo. If the tail quivers slightly, it's even more indication that the cat has positive feelings toward you.

      What do cats think when we meow at them? ›

      Sorry to break it to you, but human meows mean nothing to cats. At most, you can get your cat's attention and they may even appreciate your attempts to communicate by purring or even meowing back. But to most cats, human meows sound like human language.

      Do cats like when you talk to them in a baby voice? ›

      Yes, you read that right: A recent study revealed that getting your pet's attention is as simple as speaking with a high-pitched tone and extended vowels, just like how you'd communicate with a human baby. Additionally, the study suggested that your cat can actually tell you apart from strangers.

      References

      Top Articles
      Latest Posts
      Article information

      Author: Rob Wisoky

      Last Updated:

      Views: 6462

      Rating: 4.8 / 5 (48 voted)

      Reviews: 95% of readers found this page helpful

      Author information

      Name: Rob Wisoky

      Birthday: 1994-09-30

      Address: 5789 Michel Vista, West Domenic, OR 80464-9452

      Phone: +97313824072371

      Job: Education Orchestrator

      Hobby: Lockpicking, Crocheting, Baton twirling, Video gaming, Jogging, Whittling, Model building

      Introduction: My name is Rob Wisoky, I am a smiling, helpful, encouraging, zealous, energetic, faithful, fantastic person who loves writing and wants to share my knowledge and understanding with you.