It’s Valentine’s Day, so we’re all about love in all its different forms.
While your partner might send you a card or flowers to show they adore you, some of our best pals aren’t so readily communicative.
Cats aren’t great at openly expressing they love you.
They tip over your mugs, have wildly varying reactions to tummy strokes, and very often want nothing to do with you for hours on end… until it’s dinner time.
They can’t write how they feel or say it out loud, so how can we know our cats actually love us, rather than just thinking of us as feeding machines?
You just need to know the signs to look out for.
Claire Stallard, Behaviour and Training Development Manager at Blue Cross, tells Metro.co.uk: ‘Our pets have become our best friends, part of the family, our trusted and loyal companions.
‘People can sometimes see cats as aloof, but they are complex creatures who communicate in a variety of ways and have their own language we need to understand.
‘Once you get to know your cat and learn to read and understand their language, you just might notice the signs that show you just how much they enjoy you being around.’
So, what signs reveal how our cats really feel about us?
Soft eye contact
Direct eye contact is usually a threatening act for a cat, and you’ll notice they tend to avoid it.
But if your cat is happy to look at you with soft, relaxed eyes, perhaps even throwing in a slow blink, that shows they’ve accepted you’re not a threat and quite like spending time with you. Sweet.
Those little head boops your cat does mid snuggle? Yeah, that’s how they show they adore you.
Blue Cross explains: ‘Cats usually only bump heads with members of the same social group to reinforce their bond. They have scent glands in their cheeks and head which allows them to create a group scent when they headbutt and rub against each other.
‘So, when they headbutt you, they are essentially seeing you as one of their family and are trying to mingle their smell with yours. In cat language, that’s love.’
Also known as making biscuits. You know, when your cat is on your lap and alternately push their paws into your leg.
This behaviour is left over from the bond the cat had with their actual cat mum (the feline, not you).
When kittens feed from their mum, they paw at their mothers’ tums to encourage milk to flow.
Your cat won’t knead you because they’re expecting milk, but because they’re drawing on that loving bond. They think of you as their parent.
Licking or grooming you
Is it a bit weird when your cat suddenly won’t stop licking your ear? Yes, absolutely.
But try not to react by jumping away – this is your cat showing you their love.
‘Cats will lick other cats in their social group, partly to create a bond, but also because licking other cats within the group creates a group odour,’ Blue Cross explains. ‘The group smell helps domesticated and feral cats to tell who is in their social group.
‘So, your cat is probably licking you because they know they’re a part of your family.’
Again, this might feel weird to us humans, but the toy or dead mouse your kitty drops on your pillow is a gesture of affection.
Cats often deliver their prey to teach kittens how to hunt. Maybe your cat is worried you don’t seem very skilled in catching mice and wants to help you learn.
Cats don’t often meow at other cats – these sounds are just for people.
If your cat is making an effort to chat to you, they must like you quite a bit.
Sleeping with you
When they’re out in the wild, sleeping makes a cat vulnerable – so they choose spaces where they feel safe.
If your cat is happy to snooze on your lap or curl up on the pillow beside you, they trust you completely and feel secure in your home
Cats naturally sleep a lot and they will often opt to do this in a nice quiet space. Remember that cats are making themselves vulnerable when they sleep. So, when they choose to curl up on your lap, or crawl into bed with you, they are showing that they trust you.
Source: Read Full Article