Domestic Cat Behavior Explained. A Helpful Guide

Kitten Behavior Problems

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Cats are both expressive and sociable creatures. If you pay attention to your bundle of fur, you are going to pick out and understand their behavior. Note that cats, like humans, have different personalities. In this article we are going to look at the 10 domestic cat behavior explained as we help you understand your kitty.

Now, while most cats will behave the same way, some cats tend to be timid than others. You will need to study cat behavior to understand and speak cat. Below, we are going to outline and explain strange cat behaviors:


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Sniffing your face


Domestic Cat Behavior Explained


Before you adopt a cat, you must understand that cats rely on scents. Your cat needs to feel safe around you and thus he might sniff your body parts. It is how your cat will recognize you and every other member of the family.

Therefore, when your cat is sniffing your face or even hands, he is trying to memorize your scent. He needs to be conversant with your scent for his security purposes. Social interactions with humans are important for the welfare of your cat. Also, they use scents to get information from their owners as well as other humans.

Backing up a little bit, when you compare our body size to theirs, we can be quite threatening. Therefore, a cat has to be sure of whether you present a threat or you are friendly. Do not be surprised when your cat keeps smelling your hands or face.

Also, your cat will sniff your face to greet you. For instance, when you come home from work, he might sniff your face or hands. Cats memorize scents to feel a sense of security and familiarity with you.


Rubbing cheeks

As we have mentioned above, cats depend on scents to recognize their owners as well as familiar surroundings. Rubbing cheeks against you or even against other household items is more of territorial behavior.

Your cat will start rubbing on everything immediately you bring her home. She is marking her territory and at the same time creating a familiar and safe environment for herself. In other cases, your cat will rub her cheeks against you to display her affection towards you.

So how exactly does this work? Cats have olfactory receptors. It means that when she rubs against you her scent glands will produce pheromones and deposit them on you. This way, he can always sense his scent on you, creating a secure environment for himself.

Usually, your cat will bunt her head against you. Her scent glands are located on his head, under the chin, and behind her ears. When meeting someone new, your cat will also head bunt them. It is usually her way to get information about the person. Your cat will use rubbing against people to create a connection with household members.


The cat kiss

Did you know that your cat will kiss you? Cats are quite sociable, making them want to express their affection towards us. A cat will only give you a kiss when he trusts you. A cat kiss is when your cat slowly blinks at you. 

It is an indication of contentment and trust. Otherwise, you must understand cat-eye body language. A cat can only close her eyes when she trusts you. Otherwise, if she feels threatened at all, she is going to have a dilated eye. 

Well, if your cat dares you for a staring contest, you should avoid looking at her in the eye. Most cats challenge their owners to stare when they feel aggressive. Ignore her completely until she calms down. 

Also, you can be able to reciprocate the cat kiss right back. Slowly blink at her acknowledge the affection. She is also going to understand what you mean. 


Cat kneading – Domestic cat behavior explained


Domestic Cat Behavior Explained


Well, don’t cats love to knead, and more so kittens? They learn how to knead during kittenhood, in efforts to stimulate their mother to produce milk. Kneading is the motion your cat makes by pressing her paws against you. However, not all cats knead. 

This behavior can be painful especially when her claws are out to attack. Note that your cat does not mean to hurt you, rather she is only expressing her affection towards you. 

Sometimes your cat will knead on your laps trying to make a comfortable place to lie on. Also, cats knead because it is simply comforting to them. 

If your cat is kneading too painfully, consider keeping his claws trimmed to avoid him injuring you. Also, when he comes to you a petting session, place a towel on your laps. Avoid punishing your cat even when it hurts. 

Also, try to adjust her to a lying position when petting her. 

You can also ensure that he does not hurt you by holding his front limbs together when petting him. 

If your female cat suddenly starts kneading out of the blues, she might be in heat. Observe other signs such as restlessness and urine marking. If so, you will have to wait it out and then spay your kitty.


Chattering and chirping


This is the sound your cat makes when she is frustrated or stimulated. Cat behaviorists associate chattering with natural hunting instincts. Your cat will make the chattering or chirping sound when she spots a prey nearby. For instance, when your cat is watching the outside from the window, she might make the sound with his jaws.

It is your cat trying to show his interest in the prey. As we mentioned above, it is a natural behavior in cats. Well, as much as it is harmless, cat behavior explained suggests that your cat is preparing to kill the prey. 

You will rarely hear this sound but she makes it, you will know it. Sometimes it might sound more chirping like a bird. 


Eating and bringing non-food items


Cats are natural hunters and therefore you may witness her bringing him prey. Well, this is especially if your cat has access to the outdoor, or there are rodents in the house. So don’t be surprised when she comes home with a surprise guest. Domestic cats may not eat their kill but she might bring it home to you. 

However, if your cat has started eating non-food items, consider taking her to your vet. She could be suffering from nutritional deficiency, anemia or hyperthyroidism.

Your vet might recommend treatment with dietary adjustments. Ensure that you provide small amounts of food throughout the day to keep her fed. 

Also, ensure that your cat does not get bored during the day. Provide toys and also a perching place for your cat. Boredom may trigger your cat’s hunting instincts. Alternatively, you can place hidden food in different rooms. Your cat will spend the day hunting the food as per the scents. 


Cat rolling over


Domestic Cat Behavior Explained


Your cat will occasionally roll over with his belly up. Well, this could mean more than one thing. Therefore, you must consider the context in which she does so. 

If you are playing with your cat and he rolls over, it could be a display of trust and happiness. On the other hand, if your cat rolls over and he has his claws out, he is probably feeling a bit aggressive. Cats do not necessarily enjoy belly rubs. 

Other times, your cat is just seeking your attention. For instance, if she rolls over in the morning or generally in front of you, she probably wants you to look at him. Some cats will also attempt to initiate play by rolling over. ignore her attention-seeking behavior and do not look at her. 

Female cats will also roll over when she is in heat. Well, if you have not spayed your cat, it’s about time! Observe for other signs of a cat in heat. These may include uneasy, excessive meowing, and urine marking. 


Scratching surfaces


Cats enjoy scratching surfaces with their claws. It not only keeps them sharp but your kitty leaves her scent behind. She has scent glands on her paws. Cats have different preferences which such as the couch. Well, as we mentioned previously, cats rely on their scents. Your couch has several scents due to the different people who use it. 

Therefore, your cat might feel the need to mark the couch by depositing her scent on the couch. It can lead to excessive scratching which is destructive behavior. To control scratching behavior, buy a scratching post for her. Place it on her chosen place to scratch. It will minimize destruction and besides. you can take the post to another place gradually and thus deal with the scratching behavior we have explained above. 


Domestic Cat behavior explained


Cats communicate with us in so many different ways. It takes some time to completely understand cat communication. Well, it could be verbal or it could be pure body language. Below, we are going to briefly look at both communication methods in felines:


Domestic Cat Behavior Explained

Verbal communication

Cats communicate with humans through verbal expressions. Well, the study shows that a cat will only meow or use vocalization when they need something. For instance, your cat will meow when she is hungry. Below, we are going to look at some of the most common cat vocalizations. 

Once again, you must consider the context in which a cat uses vocalization. For instance, when you have spent the day out of the house, your cat may give you a short meow upon returning home. It is an acknowledgment and also form of greetings. 

On the other hand, when you delay mealtime, she is also going to complain the whole time. She will give you a mid-pitched cat meow. This meow can also be followed by long drawn out a meow. It is aimed at emphasizing on the urgency of his needs. 

When you startle your cat or step on her, she will give you a loud high pitched meow. Also, a lonely or fearful cat may continuously meow in a low pitch. Check on your kitty to ensure that she is okay. 

As we have mentioned, cats meow because they want to communicate with us. Therefore, do not ignore your kitty, especially when she won’t stop meowing


Cat body language

You will also be able to understand cat behavior through their body language. Observe her ears, eyes and her tail. These will let you know how your cat is feeling. For instance, when a cat has her tail up and ears forward, it means that she is at peace. 

On the other hand, if she has constricted pupils and ears facing backward, it means that she is not too happy. These are some of the signs of an aggressive cat.

Over the years, their cat behavior has been explained for us to coexist with them in our homes. For you to be able to form a bond with your cat, you must understand these behaviors. 


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