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Do Our Cats Really feel Happiness? How Do They Present It?

Analysis reveals that cats have programs of feelings that set off sure emotional and behavioral responses.1 Whereas cats and people don’t expertise the identical vary and depth of feelings, happiness is an emotion that cats really feel.

Cats might not specific their emotions as people do, so it’s essential to determine cues that point out particular feelings. Studying how cats present happiness can strengthen the bond between you and your cat and make your life collectively much more fulfilling.

Indicators of Happiness in Cats

How happiness is expressed varies from cat to cat, and cats can also present totally different indicators of happiness relying on the state of affairs they’re in.


A typical signal of happiness and contentment is purring. Though there are some instances the place cats can purr out of concern or on account of an damage, cats principally purr as a result of they really feel content material. So, in case you see that your cat is lounging or in one other relaxed place and is purring, it’s an indication that it’s feeling very completely happy.

white cat purring
Picture Credit score: AleksDaria, Shutterstock

Sluggish Blinking

Completely satisfied cats may blink slowly to point that they really feel contentment and affection towards you. In case your cat is in a relaxed place, makes direct eye contact with you, and blinks slowly, take it as a praise. Your cat feels completely happy and can also be letting you understand that it likes you.


Some vocal cats can also interact in “conversations” with their house owners after they really feel completely happy. In case your cat is meowing and taking a look at you, it’s a superb signal that it needs to have interaction with you. Some cats appear to get pleasure from it when their house owners discuss again to them calmly, and so they’ll meow again some responses.


One other signal of happiness is when a cat begins to knead with its entrance paws. This habits is also known as “making biscuits” as a result of the motion seems like a cat is kneading dough. It’s unclear as to precisely why cats begin to knead after they really feel completely happy. Some consultants imagine it’s as a result of the motion is linked to how kittens will knead on their mom.

bengal kneading blanket
Picture Credit score: Ok Lim, Shutterstock


In case your cat is feeling content material and cozy round you, it could begin to interact with you extra. Your cat can begin approaching you and rubbing its face on you. A delicate headbutt may point out affection.

Simply do not forget that your cat might begin to hassle you and wish to play out of boredom. So, guarantee that it’s getting loads of train and stimulation all through the day. When you have these bases coated and your cat nonetheless needs to play with you, it may be as a result of it likes you and simply needs to spend a while with you.

Observe How Your Cat Expresses Happiness

In my expertise with cats, I’ve seen that my cats have expressed happiness in their very own distinctive methods. I’ve had a cat that was very vocal when she felt completely happy and excited and would typically meow again if I mentioned one thing to her. She was additionally very shy but playful. So, if she needed to play, it was a transparent signal that she needed to spend time with me and have some enjoyable.

One other cat confirmed happiness simply by being in the identical room. He’d often be lounging close by, however he didn’t favor getting pets. I knew he was particularly completely happy every time he made an look and began kneading on a rug or blanket.

I’ve additionally gotten a couple of gradual blinks, however they’re rarer behaviors that I see in my cats. Typically, I’ll blink at them slowly after I discover that they’re relaxed and lounging close by. Often, they’ll reply again with a gradual blink, and it feels so rewarding.

cat playing with owner
Picture Credit score: Dora Zett, Shutterstock

How To Promote Happiness in Cats

When you can’t power cats to really feel a sure approach, you are able to do some issues to assist them really feel protected and content material. These are some issues which have helped me create a contented residence for my cats.

Set up a Constant Routine

As creatures of behavior, cats thrive off routines. Figuring out what to anticipate might help them really feel protected, and lots of will favor and admire predictability.

When you don’t need to have a routine with strict time blocks, you can begin partaking in actions in the identical sequence. For instance, my morning routine roughly seems the identical, even when I could get up at various occasions. After I get up, I begin making my morning cup of espresso. Then, I’ll begin making breakfast and getting ready my cat’s first meal. I’ll prepare for work whereas my cat eats. Earlier than I begin working, I’ll give her a deal with meting out toy to play with in order that she will get some train within the morning.

After my cat received used to this routine, I may see her anticipating each exercise. She’ll be ready by her meals station whereas I’m making breakfast, and he or she’ll additionally have a look at me expectantly when she is aware of I’m about to work as a result of she is aware of I’ll give her a deal with toy.

After establishing a constant routine, I’ve seen my cat feeling extra relaxed and fewer more likely to interrupt me every time I’m working. She is aware of that I’ll finally take a lunch break and play a bit of extra together with her earlier than going again to work.

Create Vertical Areas

Cats love cozy hiding spots and climbing as much as protected areas the place they’ll perch and observe. Many cats will get pleasure from having a tall cat tree they’ll climb. Nevertheless, you don’t have to put in a number of cat bushes to create vertical areas in your house.

I’ve cleared out areas in dice cabinets and laid out mats on them in order that my cat can sleep in them. I even have some lounging areas positioned close to areas that I most frequent in the home. There’s a file cupboard close to my work desk, and I’ve positioned a cat mattress on prime in order that my cat can relaxation close by whereas I work.

domestic cat climbs up the cat pole
Picture Credit score: vershinin89, Freepik

Present Enjoyable Playtime

Totally different cats have their very own play kinds, and discovering out their preferences can increase their happiness immensely. I’ve had a cat that most well-liked enjoying alone and was completely content material enjoying with a deal with meting out toy by himself. One other cat liked enjoying with cat wands and was happiest when she was chasing feathers hooked up to a string.


Many cats are food-motivated and might’t resist sure treats. Attending to know your cat’s favourite flavors and giving them occasional treats is a good way to spice up its temper.

You can even add a bit of extra happiness right into a cat’s life with catnip and catnip toys. The odor of catnip can set off the “completely happy” receptors in a cat’s mind. Nevertheless, not all cats react to catnip. I’ve had one cat who couldn’t care much less about catnip, however I had extra luck with silvervine. Silvervine is a very totally different plant that additionally occurs to have comparable results as catnip. Cats that don’t react to catnip might react to silver vine as an alternative.


Cats can specific happiness in varied methods. Studying about cat habits and being observant might help you establish how your cat expresses happiness and what makes it really feel happiest. I’ll be the primary to say that cats could be very emotionally expressive. It might take a while to know how your cat reveals happiness and affection. Nevertheless, when you do, it’ll solely strengthen your bond and improve the appreciation you might have for one another.

Featured Picture Credit score: Boyloso, Shutterstock

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