Video: Do Cats Dream — And If So, What Do They Dream About? It’s National Feral Cat Day! An orange tabby cat licking a human on the nose. She will literally hold me down in her paws and clean me. I can gently get her to stop?
Why does my cat lick me? First, I’ll talk about why cats lick you, and then I’ll give you some tips on how to persuade your cat that there are much more awesome options than grooming you until your skin is raw. A brown kitten licking with his tongue out. Cat licking is a way of bonding. Kittens groom each other, and older cats who aren’t related but get along well also spend time grooming one another. Often they’ll get the spots that are hard for a cat to reach by themselves, such as the top of the head and inside the ears. Exchanging scents through grooming also increases the bond between a pair of cats.
A tongue bath from your cat is an indication that she feels totally safe in your presence. You are truly a member of her family, and she reinforces that by cleaning you like her mother cleaned her when she was a kitten. The papillae help cats rasp meat off bones, and they also assist in grooming by acting like a comb to pull out loose fur and dirt. An older-looking gray cat licking his paw with his tongue out. Cat licking isn’t always a positive thing. Some cats get so stressed that they begin licking compulsively. Cats who lick themselves bald are often trying to comfort themselves because they’re stressed.
Learn the signs that your cat is about to start licking. Before she starts washing your arm raw, redirect her attention with a toy. If she’s not a catnip fan, try a treat-dispensing toy instead. It keeps your cat fit and trim, and it strengthens the bond between you. Not only that, but the chemicals released during exercise help your cat to relax and feel content. It’s not easy to retrain a cat who has gotten used to performing a habitual behavior such as licking.
Have you been able to rehabilitate a compulsive licker? Please tell us in the comments how you did it. And, as always, if you have any other weird science questions, ask me by leaving a comment! Read more about cats and science on Catster. Punk-rock cat mom, science nerd, animal shelter volunteer, and all-around geek with a passion for bad puns, intelligent conversation, and role-play adventure games. JaneA dreams of making a great living out of her love for cats.
Would You Donate Your Cat’s Body to a Vet Education Program? A sick older cat lying down and resting. I have a cat and dog like Milo and Otis. They love each other like crazy. How do I stop my kitten from playing with my hands? He often goes after my hands and in doing so scratches them quite a bit.
I want him to know my hands are for feeding, petting, picking him up, using a brush, etc. I found it interesting because she’s the first cat I’ve had that licks I thought licking was a dog thing . I had a boy cat. P and I have a big girl whose mean and doesn’t interact w anyone but my new cat she loves to lick and play a lot. Kittens also lick you because they need milk. So many kittens are taken away from there momma cat, before they are ready. Where does it say 7 reasons? It says 7 things to know. No need to call Karen out.