Cats can seem mysterious creatures with their changeable moods – they can go from being affectionate and playful to aloof and irritated at the drop of a hat. But once you learn to decode their behaviour you’ll have a better understanding of what’s going on inside their heads.
The team at Cat & Rabbit Clinic has researched cat behaviour to come up with these handy pointers to help you know what your cat is trying to tell you and are on hand to offer more advice when you contact them.
What is my cat’s body language telling me?
If your cat ‘head butts’ you with its forehead or chin it’s both showing fondness and leaving its scent as a form of communication and identification.
Without making physical contact, your cat can still indicate its affection for you. Long, slow blinks are the sign of a happy, relaxed feline.
If you come home to a cat with its tail held high, you are getting a warm welcome. Its ears will probably be in a pricked position and whiskers relaxed. If your pet is holding its tail out and slowly moving it from side to side it may be feeling aggressive, while an arched back is probably indicating that it’s feeling defensive.
If your cat is kneading on your lap or a blanket it is feeling happy and relaxed. Basically it has gone back to kittenhood, when it would knead its mother as it was nursing.
This really doesn’t need much explaining – or does it? We tend to equate purring with contentment and it’s generally pretty easy to tell when this is the case. But cats do purr for other reasons, says Simon, including being nervous and wanting something.
These are just a few behaviours you’ll see in cats, but they are complicated creatures so there are plenty more to be decoded. If your cat is displaying an unusual behaviour it may be a sign of a health issue, so the team at 1 Limehurst Square, Duston, Northampton is always happy to offer advice and answer any queries you may have.