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How Do Cats Show Love? Let Us Count Six Ways

By Cheryl Lock


They’re known for their indifference, their independence, and their solitariness. But however solitary you think your cat might be, you had better believe she has her ways of showing you that she loves and needs you. It just might be hard to tell sometimes.


Keep on the lookout for these telltale signs that your cat loves you so you’ll always know that she considers herself a part of your family.


The Forehead Touch


Even if it lasts for only a split second, head bunting, or a slight forehead-to-chin nuzzle from your kitty means your cat trusts you and enjoys your company.


The Kneader


You’ve undoubtedly seen this behavior in your cat before and probably wondered just what the heck it means. Kneading, or the milk tread, happens when your cat flexes and relaxes his front paws against a soft object. The original intent of this gesture comes from when cats are kittens and they use the behavior to stimulate the release of milk from their mother’s teat during nursing. As they grow, however, many cats keep up the behavior when they’re on something soft or when they feel content.


The Tail Twitch


Believe it or not, not all cat tail twitches were created equal. And while it’s true that cats often puff out their tails when they’re annoyed or scared, if your cat comes up to you with her tail hoisted lazily in the air with the tip twitching back and forth, she’s actually showing you a sign of affection.


The Power of Purr


Perhaps one of the most common and well-known signs of love from your cat are the steady, rhythmic sounds she emits when she inhales or exhales; otherwise known as purring. Purring is the ultimate sign of contentment, and in your presence, a throaty purr from your feline friend means she’s more than happy to sit back, relax, and be spoiled by you.


The Attention Getter


When your cat is sick of your attention being diverted elsewhere, she’ll let you know it. Whether it’s cramming herself into the nook of your arm while you sleep or taking a casual stroll over your laptop while you work, such interruptions from your cat means that she loves you and that she’s ready for some extra affection.


The Gift Giver


Yes, it’s totally gross when your cat bestows upon you a present in the form of a dead mouse, bird, or any other animal. However, look at it this way: When your cat brings you her prized, albeit dead, possession, she’s sharing her prey with you… which is actually a true sign of kitty friendship.



Image: TungCheung / Shutterstock


Comments  6

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  • How Do Cats Show Love?
    11/20/2014 07:59am

    Although we all have heard about some of these signs but having it all in one post makes it a collector's article surely a must read for cat lovers around the world. Great research all so well documented. Thanks


  • 11/21/2014 03:53am

    I agree with you..this article about the signs of affection a cat
    might demonstrate to show his/her love was great..I have
    5 cats (4 were neighborhood strays and 1 ferel kitten) and I am happy to say they really love me alot..Each one shows at least 4 of the signs of affection.

  • Guess i am NOT LOVED
    11/20/2014 08:26am

    I never experience any of these, but one. Purring. That is it. My cat does not go above and or beyond to show me anything. So, indeed just as i suspected, my cat feels limited expressions towards me. =(

  • 11/25/2014 02:10am

    Purring is the ultimate sign of affection!

  • The elusive love of a fel
    11/25/2014 02:28am

    One of my cats grooms me, ouch! Another runs up to me meowing, then flops over, he sometimes flops over on my feet. Sometimes they will follow me room to room. But my favorite is cuddling with a purring cat, I feel love the most in those moments.

  • Definitely loved
    08/29/2015 03:18pm

    From day one my shelter cat's favorite position is his head tucked under my chin! Of course he is an orange marmalade and I understand they have a reputation for being affectionate.

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