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Decoding What Your Cat's Thinking
CatsBehavior

Decoding What Your Cat's Thinking

Critter Culture Staff
Updated Oct 11, 2022

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Cats make incredible companions and trusting therapists when times get tough, but even these furry felines have thoughts and feelings they'd love you to understand. That's especially tricky when words aren't involved, so you have to decode any messages your fluffy friend is attempting to send. Tune into your cat's signals carefully, and you'll learn what they're really trying to tell you.

1

Please don't punish what I can't control

Houseplant Spathiphyllum in a pot fell on the floor and broke Lyubov Kolyaganova / Getty Images

Even the best-behaved cats will occasionally misbehave, such as urinating outside their litter box, but that doesn't necessarily mean something's wrong. It could be attributed to many causes, from a change in environment to a urinary tract infection. Other times, they might not have access to something as simple as a scratching post, so they'll claw away at your furniture. Usually, this behavior corrects itself, so don't go overboard on the punishments. Carefully consider other factors that could affect your cat's bad behavior; sometimes, it's best to go easy on them.

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2

People pleasing is overrated

Woman with cat on yoga mat Johner Images / Getty Images

Cats are famous for their fierce independence, and that's because they see people pleasing as entirely overrated. While dogs will follow you around every corner, tackle you at the door, and crawl into bed with you after a long day, cats are the polar opposite. They're divas who love their alone time, and they prefer to be the center of their own universe. If they don't like something, they'll let you know, which is a wonderful way to improve the bond between you and your cat.

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3

Sometimes, we take a while to adjust

Ginger tabby cat and golden retriever sitting at dining table Janie Airey / Getty Images

It's no secret that cats are territorial creatures and take great pride in their home turf. A change in environment can make cats feel stressed, anxious, and uncomfortable, so if you've moved or welcomed a new member into the family, you might notice them urinate outside the litter box or get into that dirty pile of clothing sprawled across the floor. If any changes occur, give your cat adequate time to adjust and make themselves feel at home.

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4

I'm smarter than the average child

Portrait of cat sitting on wooden table with chess pieces in foreground at backyard Cavan Images / Getty Images

Cats possess above-average abilities in many areas, making them significantly more intelligent than the average 10-year-old human. They can see in ultraviolet, hear better than humans, and are so clever they can work their way through nearly any challenge — if they can't squeeze their way through it first. Your furry friend is smarter than a fifth grader, which is quite impressive, isn't it?

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5

I need more stimulation

Cat sitting among potted plants looking bored

Cats thrive on attention and need as much of it as possible. If they don't feel like you're giving them enough love and affection, they'll make this known. Play with your pet cat, provide adequate entertainment, give them plenty of cuddles, and they'll be your friend for life. Play is important, and sometimes, a little extra stimulation is all they need to stay satisfied.

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6

It's easy to entertain me

cat sitting in a box Photo by Piotr Musioł on Unsplash

Cats are so easy to please that even a cardboard box can provide hours of excitement. If you want to invite some amusement into your home, pricey cat toys aren't necessary. Instead, bring out your cat's naturally playful nature with paper bags, ping pong balls, toilet paper rolls, crinkled aluminum balls, feathers, and catnip. Once they find something that makes them happy, they'll go wild for hours.

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7

You're mine — always

Woman at home listening to music and drinking coffee martin-dm / Getty Images

Cats are loyal and dedicated companions to those they love most, and they'll do just about anything to prove this and gain your respect. The strong bonds they form with their owners are unbreakable, so if your cat is constantly rubbing against you, curling up to you, and cuddling, it just means that they're extra-loving and devoted. These behaviors have a deeper meaning: they're leaving their scent behind so other animals know you belong to them.

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8

Napping is everything to me

cat sleeping on a plush green chair Photo by Tucker Good on Unsplash

There's nothing that a quality nap can't cure, and it's your cat's go-to for restoring their body and mind — much like it is for you. Every time your furry friend lies down for a little pet nap, they're helping clear their brain of toxins, boost concentration and improve their learning and creativity. If your pet's feeling stressed, allow them to get the quality rest they need.

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9

I'm an empath

cat getting its face rubbed by their human Photo by Tai Bui on Unsplash

If you're feeling stressed, anxious, or depressed, your pet cat will pick up on it. Cats are ultra-sensitive to feelings and will completely understand when your mood changes, often making attempts to curl up and comfort you. Usually, your cat will catch your attention by acting strangely, misbehaving, or crawling all over you, but this is only because they care. Even the most independent cat will pick up on and react to your emotions.

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10

You need me, too

cat outdoors with a toddler and their family Photo by Chewy on Unsplash

The pet owner-cat relationship is mutually rewarding for both of you. Cats are proven to help relieve feelings of anxiety, depression, and stress, so they can benefit your mental health. They may also lower your blood pressure and could reduce your heart attack risk by up to 30%, so health benefits abound. For many people, owning a cat is similar to the emotional bond shared with a romantic partner or close friend; they're always available to listen and comfort their owners without criticism, so your feline is just as beneficial to you as you are to them.

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