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Ten Signs That Your Cat Loves You

Picture of woman holding a cat
  1. Head butts and head rubs. Nudges and rubs are an obvious sign of feline friendliness. But aside from the pure sweetness, there’s a pheromone-driven reason for this particular expression of affection. Cats have scent glands on their cheeks, chins, foreheads, and lips. When they rub against you, they are marking you with their scent and claiming you as theirs. Pet behavior researcher Gayle Hickman adds that “Butting is a cat’s communication method of showing affection for others. By rubbing this body part against one of yours, she is identifying you as one of her friends.” This is a clear sign that your cat not only loves you but she wants the rest of the world to know how much she loves you. Consider it the kitty equivalent of marking her territory with an engagement ring.
  2. Tummy displays. It may look like your cat wants nothing more than a tummy rub when she rolls over to show you her fluffy belly. Actually, it’s often quite the opposite. Kitty is exhibiting vulnerability precisely because she trusts you NOT to mess with her tummy. No animal would allow an enemy to have access to the underbelly. She is showing you that she feels safe and comfortable around you and this is very much a sign that she loves you.
  3. A cat’s purr is regarded as the ultimate sign of feline love and affection. But did you know that cats preserve their purrs for the special humans in their lives? Cats typically don’t purr for other cats except their own kittens. When your kitty purrs for you, she is expressing affection in a way that very few other beings get to experience and she loves you.
  4. Less universal than purrs are cats’ gurgles and chirps, although anyone who has lived with a feline friend knows them well. These high-pitched sounds that cats make generally indicate friendliness and sociability. So if you hear your cat chattering, you’ll know without a doubt that she loves you very much.
  5. Gifts and treasures. You and your cat may have different ideas about what makes a good gift, but nearly every kitty parent has been proudly presented with a dead thing, a chewed-up wad of paper, or a piece of particularly smelly trash. One reason that cats bring these things to their owners is because they recognize that we are terrible hunters and they want to teach us as well as provide for us. Another reason is that they are actually taking their catch where they feel safest. Whether kitty is trying to make up for your lack of hunting prowess or she is showing that she feels safe around you, bringing you things is a demonstration of how much your cat loves you.
  6. Just as we humans show physical affection to each other and we pet our cats, our cats show their love for us through touch. Whether we call it kneading, making biscuits, or happy paws, we’ve all seen and felt our cats massaging us with their paws. Kittens learn that this stimulates milk flow when they are nursing and they retain this instinct throughout their lives. “This behavior has a habit of sticking around as a source of comfort and relaxation, and it may even be a sign of affection and bonding with you. A cat may exhibit this behavior because it sees you as its mother, authority figure or it’s the cat’s way of saying, ‘I trust you’,” writes Hickman. Cats also have scent glands in their paws, so kneading you is a way of marking you just like the head butts and it means that your cat loves you.
  7. Licking you is another way that your kitty shows affection. Cats groom each other as a show of care and when your cat grooms you, she cares. Both kneading and grooming are physical ways that your cat shows how much she loves you.
  8. Slow blink. We’ve all seen our cats look directly at us and then slowly, deliberately close their eyes. This is actually a sign of supreme affection and the website Petful even refers to it as a “kitty kiss”. It signals that that she does not see you as a threat and she is not a threat to you. Even big cats in captivity will blink at their keepers sometimes. There’s very little higher than that in the world of cats. If your cat blinks slowly at you, she is signifying that she loves you.
  9. Tail up. Cats’ tails have a language all their own. A poofy tail means fear or anger or both. A tail whipping back and forth quickly signifies anger and agitation; a more slowly waving tail means focus and preparation for pouncing. Cats will also wrap their tails around other cats or people they like a lot. And when a cat’s tail is sticking straight up, sometimes with a little curl on the end, that’s a sign of happiness and excitement. If your cat curves her tail around you or greets you at the door with this kind of up tail, you’ll know that she loves you.
  10. Sharing your space. Cats are naturally aloof and somewhat solitary creatures so when your cat deigns to share space with you, you’ll know that she values your company. If your cat follows you from room to room or just stays in the room when you enter instead of scurrying off, she is showing that she considers you non-threatening and part of the pack. And a cat who sleeps with you at night is expressing her affection in her own terms. She may feel too secretive or vulnerable to be lovey during the day but when she joins you in your bed at night, she is clearly showing how much she loves you.

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