It’s National Cat Day, and what better time to learn some of the ways your cat communicates with you?
When we think of animals being expressive, the first thought that comes to mind is likely a dog. Dogs are known for being transparent when it comes to showing emotion — waging their tail when happy, curling up when unhappy or afraid.
Even various types of barking can be clear indications into how your dog is feeling. However, it may be surprising to know that cats are just as expressive. A professor of veterinary behavior, Sharon Crowell-Davis, at the University of Georgia, is trying to prove this, insisting that cats are just as expressive as dogs. We just need to be more attentive and receptive to what they’re saying.
It is generally known that cats purr when happy and content. It is also good to know that this purring can also be a sign of them feeling unwell. This purr is more of a way of showing they need you there with them at the moment.
The way cats blink are a good indication of how they’re feeling towards the people, and the cats, around them. A slow, prolonged blink towards a human or cat shows contentment and acceptance. This means the cat likes you and does not feel threatened at all.
A cats face is also a good indication of its mood — a tense face means the cat is stressed or upset, where a loose, relaxed face means just that. It is good to pay attention to your cats facial expressions just as you would pay attention to the faces of people.
Although cats are much more subtle in their expressions, when you start paying attention, it can be very easy and beneficial to know some certain indications of their moods. This will make it easier to predict sickness, to tell if a new pet you’re integrating is liked or to make your cat uncomfortable.
Of course, there are other general signs to keep an eye out for when you have a cat. Pay attention to body language, meowing, and tails especially. All of this can aid in understanding what your cat is trying to communicate to you. Cats, just like dogs, have a lot to say when you begin to listen.