by Nomi Berger
If only cats spoke “human.”
But then, as cat guardians, you’d be missing out on all the other ways your favorite felines say, “I love you.” If you recognize any or all of the behaviors listed below, consider yourself one much loved and deeply appreciated pet parent.
Does your cat bring you “gifts”? As natural born hunters, anything to a cat is fair game. If your cat generously shares their bounty with you – whether a toy or a mouse – these are, to them, true tokens of their love.
Does your cat approach you with a straight tail? Once used to greet their adored mothers, a straight tail with the end slightly tipped acknowledges the depth of your cat’s feelings for you.
Does your cat roll around, exposing its belly? The ultimate gesture of submission, cats reserve this behavior only for those they love and trust. It’s both an affectionate greeting and an appealing invitation for your undivided attention.
Does your cat linger around you? Both following after and hovering near you like a small four-legged shadow shows that they want nothing more than to be as close to you as cattily possible.
Does your cat play with you? As kittens, they played for sheer pleasure, and as cats, they will play with their most trusted, beloved companions, even slyly moving out of reach to make YOU go to THEM.
Does your cat cheek-rub or head-bump your face? Calling “bunting”, these behaviors lay claim to those they love by leaving their scent on them, and should be seen as expressions of affection and a specially shared privilege for two.
Does your cat give you little love bites? A playful nibble (unlike a true bite that makes you go “ouch!”) that feels more like a tickle is another sweet way of your cat’s displaying their affection for you.
Does your cat knead you like dough? First learned when nursing as newborns, these slow, repetitive motions not only demonstrate their bond with you but also comfort them to the point of blissful drowsiness.
Does your cat purr at you? Whether their purr-ometer is set on high or on low, a cat’s happy purr in your presence or as the recipient of your attention is an unmistakable expression of their love for you.
Does your cat meow at you? Cats don’t meow at one another, saving this particular form of vocalization as proof of their love for those nearest and dearest to them – namely their loving and devoted cat guardians.
Does your cat make eye contact with you? If your cat holds your gaze and blinks slowly when your eyes meet, be assured that this is a feline version of a kiss, expressing both trust in and love for you.
Does your cat sleep in your lap? Because cats sleep up to 16 hours a day and are at their most vulnerable then, choosing your lap as one of their favorite spots to nap is the most loving compliment your cat can pay you.
These behaviors may be just the tip of the proverbial iceberg. For proof paws-itive, you have only to watch your own best feline friend, and paws-ibly discover more.