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The language of cats

enero 12, 2021

the language of cats

Even our cat speaks and tells us very specific things, despite what we might think at first sight. The communication of cats is really a complex system made up of many different sounds and sometimes associated with movements of the body and specific parts. Each sound has a particular meaning and, on the other hand, the more we talk to our cat, the more he will be willing to make himself understood by us. The first basic element of the language of cats is of course the meow, with its different shades, with which our pet tries to communicate with us. However, even a simple meow has different meanings, there is what it takes to attract our attention, the one that signals hunger and the one with which the desire to leave or return is expressed. Let’s look at three basic ways in which the cat communicates, namely the meows, the tail and the bites.

Bites bitten in the language of cats

The cat can try to communicate with us even in less sweet and pleasant ways than a simple meow. Bites are a clear example of this, a perhaps a little aggressive attitude of the cat, but which in any case has a different meaning depending on the context. Of course, the bites mean a certain nervousness of the animal, however to understand what exactly our four-legged friend wants to tell us we must try to understand why he is biting us. We think in general of when the cat uses the bite in the animal world: the male bites the female before mating, the mother cat bites the kittens to correct them and the bite becomes strategic in the hunting phase to kill a prey.

In the relationship with humans, why does the cat bite? The first analysis to do is if by chance we have, perhaps mistakenly, accustomed the animal to bite to interact, in the case of a puppy, however, the bite can signal a premature detachment from the mother and therefore the lack of inhibition of the bite. In the latter case, the kitten is usually also very energetic and hyperactive. There are circumstances in which the bites, if accompanied by licks, are manifestations of affection. Obviously these are small, delicate bites.

Language of cats: the tail

The tail is certainly one of the most fascinating and curious parts of cats. The movements are really special and always mean something very specific, both emotionally and intentionally. If the cat walks with a straight tail and a rounded tip as if to form a question mark, it is greeting us happily. If, on the other hand, he moves his tail using it as a whip from one side to the other, it is the signal with which he wants to tell us that something is making him nervous or shaking him. Clearly, sometimes it can also indicate the phase of a game, so it is always good to contextualize the movement to understand the language, associating it with the rest of the body.

Again, the tail gathered close to the body is that of a cat that feels perfectly at ease, the one held under the body instead denotes fear or discomfort and is generally accompanied by a slightly squatting position and the ears lowered backwards. . The big tail of a cat, on the other hand, signals fear and is a self-defense strategy with which the cat tries to look bigger than it is.

The meows

We now come to the meows which, as we said, can also have very different meanings. For example, if our feline opens its mouth as if to meow but without emitting any sound, we are talking about a mute vocalization, a behavior common to all cats that usually occurs when the cat is for example in front of the window absorbed in observing something inside. ‘external. Often, the vocalization can also consist of a strange, very low frequency noise, with which it almost seems that the cat wants to attract the attention of a bird or whatever else has caught his attention.

But what does this indicate? A state of excitement, but also preparation for attack or even some satisfaction. Another particular meow is the so-called feline chirping, another type of sound, this time at very high frequency, therefore very acute, which lasts a few moments and is named for its resemblance to the sound of a bird. In this case, the cat wants to express his happiness, or a certain surprise or simply to call attention. Other meows, on the other hand, can be the mumbles, but also the hisses or even the puffs, in this case it is quite easy to assume that our feline is rather angry and dissatisfied, if not disturbed by our presence. If, on the other hand, these sounds arrive in front of another animal, they indicate a stratagem to scare it and perhaps force it to leave the field.

Then of course there are the purring, that is the vibration that only cats are capable of producing, with which they communicate full well-being and satisfaction. That’s why we feel the purr while the cat eats or immediately after or even after a very satisfying hunt and during cuddling. In some rare cases, the purr can also indicate discomfort or fear and the cat uses this tool to reassure itself independently. Finally, the classic meow with the cat tries to translate many of his wishes, from a simple «Look at me» to hunger, up to a request for attention to us, especially if the meow is accompanied by some rubbing on the legs.