Cats are often labeled as moody and even mean, but that is usually because most people don’t know how to read a cat’s subtle body language! Knowing what to look for can help you to react appropriately to your cat’s signals and even strengthen the bond between you and your cat. Here are 3 common ways your cat may be trying to communicate with you through body language.
Many people will often apply their knowledge of dog behavior to cats. So, when your cat rolls over to show you his fuzzy tummy, your first inclination is to pet it. That’s a big no-no in the cat world! When a cat rolls over, it may be feeling cornered. While dogs often show their tummies to be submissive, a cat that’s showing its tummy is ready to defend itself should you make an advance towards them.
Of course, there are times when a cat is showing his tummy because he feels comfortable and content and is fine with letting you pet it. All cats are unique, so it’s a good idea to figure out what your cat likes and not try to force them into letting you pet their sensitive tummies.
When your cat gazes at you and blinks slowly, he’s not showing boredom. He’s showing affection! Closing his eyes in front of you means that your cat trusts being in your presence. You can return the sentiment by blinking slowly back at your cat!
Do you ever feel intimidated when your boss makes direct eye contact with you during a conversation? This body language reads the same in the cat world. Cats feel uncomfortable and self-aware when someone is staring at them. This is why a cat may gravitate towards the only person in a group who is trying to ignore them.
A fearful cat will have expanded pupils, which take in more visual information. A wide-eyed cat with fully dilated pupils is feeling scared and wants to get away from the situation.
An angry cat will have narrowed pupils that focus on details. It’s important to look for other signs of an angry cat rather than just narrow pupils. Keep an eye out for ears out to the side or pinned back against the head and a bristled tail.
When your cat is feeling fearful or angry, don’t try to comfort him by reaching out to pet him. The best thing to do is to remove the source of whatever is frightening or angering your cat and give him a little space to calm down.
Get in Touch with the Catonsville Cat Clinic!
For 20 years, the Catonsville Cat Clinic has been providing quality veterinary care to the cats of Catonsville and beyond! Dr. Pam Nesbitt–purchased the practice in July 2011–runs the Catonsville Cat Clinic with compassion in mind. A team of professionals with an advanced level of veterinary medicine is at your service to make sure your cat is healthy and happy. So stop on by–we’d love to get to know you and your cat!
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