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Understanding Cat Lingo

For those who aren’t fond of cats or haven’t owned one, most often than not, they perceive cats as these cold, unbothered, and cruel creatures. However, this could only be far from the truth. In fact, being with a cat and living with it is one of the most heart-warming experiences anyone can ever have.

Cats usually talk and behave in a puzzling manner, but if you observe them long enough, you’ll realize how smart they could be. Since cats predominantly communicate through a silent lingo, taking verbal and physical cues through purrs and body language is vital in creating a lasting bond with them.

Table of Contents
Why Own a Cat?
How Do Cats Communicate?

  • Meowing, purring, and hissing 
  • The direction of their ears 
  • Tail signals
  • Eye talk
  • Fur state
  • Posture 

Why Do Cats Present You with “Gifts”?

Why Own a Cat?

Cats can bring exceptional joy to anyone they come in contact with. Spending time with a loving cat after a long, tiring day is very rewarding. Oftentimes, they opt to settle on your lap or chest and take siestas with you. This furry friend will help you relax, unwind, and forget about your problems every once in a while. 

If you’re worried about their maintenance, then you really shouldn’t. Cats are low maintenance and mostly independent. They can perfectly entertain themselves while keeping your place pest-free. They’re also ideal pets for small houses or solo condominium units.

How Do Cats Communicate?

Unlike other animals, cats often communicate through a silent language. They use a combination of vocalizations, body lingo, and scent cues to relay messages to their owners. Whenever a cat is hungry, pissed off, or in need of attention, you will know by the way they pur, roll their body, or rest on you.

The following are some of the major cues cats do to send messages:

Meowing, purring, and hissing – meows, purrs, and hisses could mean differently depending on the situation. Cats do these to show their emotions at the moment. When cats meow while walking around their food bowl, then they must be hungry. When they stay too long on a door and keep on hissing, then a pest might be on the other end. When they hiss at other cats, then they’re getting territorial and protective. There are endless possibilities that you have to take note of. 

The direction of their ears – yes, it may be a bit bizarre but cats can communicate using their ears. When cats are interested in a conversation or scenario, their ears usually curl forward. On the other hand, when they’re annoyed or angry, you’ll see their ears bend sideways or curl backwards. When these backward ear curls are accompanied with hisses, then your cat might definitely be in distress or feels threatened. 

Tail signals – just like dogs, cats can communicate using their tails. Tail signals could pertain to affection, longing, fondness, distress, and arousal, among others. When cats want to be approached, they usually raise their tails up, basically welcoming your presence. When they flail or thump their tails, on the other hand, then you better keep your distance. A tail signal of swishing could mean they want to play and when they do, you’d better be armed with toys to keep them entertained. Finally, when their tails are bristled, then they’re ready for some cat fight. Usually this happens when your cat is faced with other unfamiliar cats.

Eye talk – the sudden dilation or constriction of cats’ eyes could signal different things. A sudden dilation May mean fear, excitement, or interest, while a narrowed eye could signal aggression.

Fur state – you can tell a lot about a cat’s health just by looking at its fur. Cats groom themselves well, so they often keep themselves and each other clean. Unkempt fur could signal poor health and may prompt a bath or a trip to the nearest Veterinarian clinic. Do this certainly if accompanied with lethargy, vomiting, or diarrhea. 

Posture – a cat’s body language is quite unique. They could express confidence and fear just by how they change their body position. For example, a hunched back with a bristled tail could mean that your cat is threatened and ready to protect her territory. Reading body language should also be in conjunction with their ears, eyes, and tail positioning. 

Why Do Cats Present You with “Gifts”?

When we talk about “gifts”, this could mean the pests they’ve hunted around you or the new toys they’ve collected while playing. Though this behavior may be seen by other people as gross or unbecoming, this is actually a sweet gesture in cat lingo. Bringing you gifts means that your cat has accepted you to be part of their family. It’s basically saying, “you’re one of us now.” Who wouldn’t want that?

However, a caution if you have an outdoor cat: their hunt might get more intense over time so it’s better to put a collar on them in case they wander too far from home. Although cats are smart creatures and could find their home through memory and scent with no problem, sometimes too much distance could just break that scent string altogether. 

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