Cat Behaviour

How do Cats Show Affection?

I think it’s quite well known that cats love their space. They are not considered to be the most affectionate pets, however, most feline lovers will tell you that is not true. Just like any other pet, cats have their own way of expression. They often like to show affection to the humans they feel comfortable with in very subtle ways, such as those that will be discussed below.

If you are a new cat owner or do not know much about cat mannerisms, it is often easy to miss signs of affection given by them. Below are a few things that cats do to show love to the humans around them.

Cheek Rubs

You must have seen a cat rub their cheeks against someone they trust. This is a prevalent sign of affection by cats. They convey that they feel safe with you by rubbing their cheeks against you. Cats have scent glands almost on their cheeks that secret pheromone. Therefore, cheek rubs are a sign of affection and socialization invitations, and a way of marking ownership.

Head Bunting

Head bunting is the next step to cheek rubbing. When cats feel incredibly affectionate, after they have rubbed their cheek against you, they will often poke you with their forehead. Cats do head bunting for similar reasons as cheek rubbing. You will commonly see cats bunting their heads against their favorite humans or other pets.


Grooming plays a huge role in how a cat feels, and they often dedicate most of their day to self grooming. Not only do cats bond with each other through grooming, but they also groom their favorite people to show affection. As a result, cats will often lick a person that they like being with. Cats also like to lick their kittens and favorite people, because that too, marks territory by leaving a special scent on the skin.


This is a sign of affection that is not the most excellent thing that cats do. They like to mark ownership and love attention, and this is the way to do it.

When a cat scratches a sofa that you like to sit on, or something that they associate with you, do not take it as a sign of aggression. Scratching is often a sign of affection that cats display since it leaves both a pheromonic and visual marking.

Cat Kisses

Believe it or not, the way a cat looks at you will tell you a lot in this respect. Cats can show affection through their eyes through cat kisses. Cat kisses are remarkable reciprocal eye blinks that a cat will do only while showing trust, love, and contentment. When a cat blinks slowly through half closed eyes, know that you’ve been cat kissed!


Cats are very different from human kids in many respects. One of them is that while children will drop and roll on the ground while throwing a tantrum, cats do it to show affection. If a cat shows you its belly, they are often in need of affection and attention. This is why you often see cats running towards someone, and then throwing themselves on the floor and rolling around.


Even though cats cannot speak the languages that you do, they are great at verbal communication. Cats have a special purring sound that sounds like a running motor. You will often hear this sound only when your cat is happy and relaxing. Therefore, you will generally hear this sound when you are petting or stroking your cat.

Getting Prey

Even though cats are domestic pets, they are still hunters by instinct. Therefore, they love running around and catching prey from places. Cats only present the prey they catch as bounty to the people they love. Even though that might turn a little ugly, if a cat presents you with these special gifts, you’re definitely loved.

Sleeping on You

Much like any other living being, cats are most vulnerable while they are asleep. Where your cat chooses to sleep, has to be the place where they feel the most secure. So, if a cat likes to sleep on your lap, or rest their head against your lap while sleeping, you can be sure that they love and trust you.

The Elevator Butt Pose

There is something about the base of their tail that makes cats love being scratched there. Often, while you are petting a cat, you will experience the elevator butt pose. This is when the tail is elongated so that all attention is diverted towards the base of their tail. If you see a cat approaching you with its tail high in the air but curled towards the end, this often is another display of affection. Adult cats continue to show respect to their favorite humans this way.

Do not fall for the myth that all cats are not affectionate. They are incredibly adorable and most often love the people they are around. Their ways of showing love are very different from most pets since they hardly ever show these signs when you want them to. However, cats display love in many ways when they feel love and affection for you.

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