If you have ever owned or interacted with a cat, chances are you’ve experienced the strange phenomenon of kneading. Of course, cats knead when they are content and happy, but why do cats knead? It turns out that there is a lot more to this behavior than meets the eye.
Let’s look at kneading, why cats do it, and what it means for their owners.
Why does my cat knead me?
From my experience with cats, I can tell that your feline friend may be kneading you for various reasons.
It could be your cat’s way of expressing happiness or contentment since it begins to purr when it starts the behavior.
Your cat might also be trying to mark you as its property with the scent from its paws by transferring their scent onto you from kneading.
Nuzzling and affectionate licking are other forms of kneading behavior, sometimes done while they purr.
Ultimately, your cat loves and trusts you enough to demonstrate its special bond with you in this gentle yet firm way.
What Is Kneading?
Kneading, also known as “making biscuits,” is a behavior in that cats use their paws to push in and out against something soft.
The object of kneading can be anything from your lap to furniture covers or blankets.
Kittens often exhibit this behavior when nursing; they associate this pleasant sensation with comfort and contentment as they grow up.
Why Do Cats Knead?
The answer to this question depends on who you ask; some experts believe that cats knead to mark their territory by leaving behind their scent from their paw pads.
Others think it may be an instinctive behavior left over from the days when domestic cats were wild—kneading could make grassy patches softer for sleeping or create depressions in long grasses for hunting purposes.
Still, others believe that kneading helps cats release extra energy or express feelings of pleasure or contentment; cats often purr while kneading, which is usually a sign of happiness.
No matter the reason behind it, one thing is sure—cat owners should be thankful for this affectionate display of love.
Do all cats knead?
Not all cats knead, but it is a behavior displayed by many felines.
Kneading is when the cat rhythmically pushes their paws in and out against a surface, usually an object such as a lap or cushioned chair.
This action can mean different things for different cats – some may knead when they are content and comfortable. In contrast, others may use it to mark territory or in preparation for curling up for a nap.
Regardless of the purpose, kneading is an endearing trait that cats take part in often.
If you own a cat who enjoys this activity, be sure to provide them with plenty of cushioned surfaces for their comfort.
Why does my cat knead my stomach?
Although cat owners may find it odd, cats kneading on their stomachs is an integral part of their feline behavior repertoire.
Kneading consists of rhythmic pressing and pushing with alternating front paws on soft surfaces such as pillows, blankets, fur, or even people – in your case, your stomach.
This happy behavior could be a comforting sign of pleasure or contentment from the kitty expressing his feeling of warmth and comfort in the presence of his beloved human companion.
Don’t be surprised if you catch your cat making biscuits after meals; for cats, kneading is associated with satisfying their need for sustenance and security.
This habit may trigger the instincts to feed and nurture themselves as when they were a kitten.
Why does my cat knead me when I am sleeping?
Have you ever noticed that your cat loves to knead your body when lying in bed?
That innocent snuggling is a sign of affection from your cat.
Kneading is an instinctive behavior. By kneading you, your pet expresses the contentment and joy they feel when being close to you.
Kneading can also be a way for cats to mark their territory while spreading pheromones around the area.
In addition, during nursing, cats knead their mother’s abdomen to stimulate milk production.
So that lovely action of your cat petting you is innate behavior rooted in love and security.
Why does my cat knead me and not my husband?
There are many theories on why cats knead their owners, and this behavior is often seen as a show of affection.
Often, cats bond more closely with one individual in a household, seeking them out for cuddles and purrs. This could be the case in your situation – your cat has likely formed a closer bond with you than with your husband.
Another possibility is that cats are susceptible to scents and sounds, so if you make different sounds or have a distinct scent, your kitty may be drawn toward you rather than your husband.
Whatever the cause, enjoy being favored – relax and bask in your cat’s adoration.
For centuries, people have been trying to figure out why cats do so many odd things—but we don’t need an answer when it comes to kneading. As long as our feline friends keep showing us love in whatever form they choose (no matter how strange), we can accept it with open arms…and laps.
Whether your kitty is marking her territory or just feeling particularly contented one day, know that she loves you—and take comfort in knowing exactly what her little paw movements mean.