For centuries, humans have been puzzled by cat talks and language. These whiskered fellows have been regarded as a mysterious, unpredictable, and solitary creature because it is difficult for us to understand the things they try to communicate with us.
However, savvy cat owners have learnt to understand what their felines try to communicate with them.
While humans rely on speech and a few sign languages to communicate, cats rely predominately on a rather silent language. Kitties communicate via a complex set of sign languages, scent, vocalisations, and cues.
In this article, you will be learning how to understand basic cat languages, how to figure out the most common kinds of combinations, and how to understand what your cat is telling you and telling the other pets in your house.
With a lot of practice, you will become an expert in communicating with cats in no time, and you just might find yourself being able to answer back.
Table of Contents
- 1. Purrs, Meows, and more
- 2. Ear talk
- 3. Eye talk
- 4. Tail talk
- 5. Fur talk
- 6. Scent and smell
- 7. Body talk
1. Purrs, Meows, and more
We already know that cats make use of vocalisations to express their emotions. Purring, meowing, growls, hisses, and more are what make up the feline repertoire, each sound with a special meaning that depends on the context of its usage.
While adult cats are not known to meow at each other, it appears that domesticated felines have learnt to meow at people. Some scientists believe that this behaviour means adult cats see their humans as kittens because meowing is how adult cats communicate with their babies.
2. Ear talk
Cats can also express emotions and their intentions using their ears. Generally speaking, the more times a cat’s ears move backwards and sideways, the greater the cat’s distress or arousal. If you notice your cats make a backward ear movement accompanied by a swipe or hiss, that is a sign that it doesn’t like what you are doing, or it feels threatened.
3. Eye talk
Cats communicate using their eyelids as well. The dilation of a cat’s iris, how closed or open their eyelids could be ways to pass a message across to you. If you notice a sudden dilation of your feline’s iris, it often results from sudden arousal which could be as a result of arousal, interest, fear, or any other strong emotion.
4. Tail talk
The tail of every cat is a strong communication tool that signals affection, arousal, interest, and lots more. The motion of a cat’s tail as well as the height it rises it to have meanings. A thumping or flailing cat tail usually means you should stay away or keep a reasonable distance from the creature. If a tail is swishing back and forth, it is a sign that it wants to play with you.
5. Fur talk
A calm and healthy cats fur rest nice and smooth against the body. Cats are animals that love to groom so the state of a cats fur will tell you so much about its health.
An unkempt cat fur could mean that the animal is sick and thus should not be ignored. Pay attention to your cat to find out other symptoms like vomiting that may accompany the unkempt fur. However, a sudden fluffed coat that goes with a bottle brush tail would mean that the cat is scared or in an aggressive mood.
If your cat or any other cat for that matter exhibits such character, it is in your best interest to stay away.
6. Scent and smell
We all love sweet scents, and cats do live their lives around scents. It is almost impossible always to interpret or detect the scent cues used by felines for communication.
However, among their scent tools, kitties make use of faces and strong urine markings, clawing, and also bunting to send a message across to the other cats in the area.
The reason for this kind of marking is to communicate territorial information to other cats because cats are selfish and love to mark out their own space in every home.
The scented information reads “This is my territory and I will not tolerate any form of trespassing from you pussies”. Cats are so good at reading smells so much so that kittens make you of scents before they are eventually able to see clearly.
7. Body talk
Just like humans can pass a lot of information using body languages, cats are also excellent at it. The body posture of a feline could mean anything from fear, confidence, anger, to submission.
For you to get the information your cats is passing as intended, you need to read the body talk in conjunction with the cat’s ears, eyes, fur, tail, and also vocalisation expressions. Once you can read these signs and fuse them with the tips you get from a cats body posture, you can easily tell if the cat is relaxed, happy, upset, or scared.
If a cat’s ears are pointed slightly forward, its eyes are relaxed, and its whiskers are also pointed forward while it’s resting, it means that the feline is happy and relaxed. The key to learning more about your cat’s behaviour is watching it closely.
With these few tips, you should be able to build a good relationship with your cat and understand it better than you used to.
Cats can be very jealous creatures so while you are trying to understand one cat better, it is best to make sure you do not bring another cat into your home as it may lead to aggression and the efforts you are putting in to communicate with your pet better might be wasted.
If you must get another cat, it is vital that you find a way to split your attention evenly and also make the cat you have had for longer feel like the king or queen of your home.
Make sure to provide enough hiding, running, and jumping space for the new cat so that while you are trying to get both felines to live together peacefully, the new cat can easily escape danger and aggression from the older cat.
With time and dedication, your cats will be able to live together and will be able to communicate with them as effectively as possible.
It is crucial for you to know that cats also sense your energy, so your mood is a way you communicate with them unknowingly. It is best for you to be positive and happy when you are around them so they do not exhibit characters that you might find disturbing.