Kitten looking into camera, lying on white blanket

Five signs your cat loves you

The love we have for our cats is precious and can create strong bonds that last a lifetime. Many owners wonder if their feelings are reciprocated by their four-legged friends.

Our cats can be complicated creatures, so how can we really tell? Here are our top five ways of knowing that your cat loves you back.

Soft eye contact

Eye contact can mean many things to your cat, but in general they tend to see this as threatening. So, if your cat is happy to look you in the eye with nice soft, relaxed eyes they are very happy in your company and have accepted you as non-threatening.

Headbutting 

Cats usually only bump heads with members of the same social group to reinforce their bond. They have scent glands in their cheeks and head which allows them to create a group scent when they headbutt and rub against each other.

So, when they headbutt you, they are essentially seeing you as one of their family and are trying to mingle their smell with yours. In cat language, that’s love.

Kneading

If your cat is kneading your lap when you have a cuddle, they could be drawing a connection from the secure relationship they had with their mother, to the relationship they have with you. Unfortunately, this can also mean that the happier your cat is, the harder they knead you (sorry legs!).

Licking or grooming you

Cats will lick other cats in their social group, partly to create a bond, but also because licking other cats within the group creates a group odour. The group smell helps domesticated and feral cats to tell who is in their social group.

So, your cat is probably licking you because they know they’re a part of your family.

Sleeping with you

Cats naturally sleep a lot and they will often opt to do this in a nice quiet space. Remember that cats are making themselves vulnerable when they sleep. So, when they choose to curl up on your lap, or crawl into bed with you, they are showing that they trust you.

— Page last updated 22/01/2020

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