Each cat is a special little snowflake. As you spend more and more time with cats, you will find that each cat has a different personality and unique quirk. Some cats love a full body massage while others only allow you to pet the top of their heads. That’s why each cat has a different way of expressing love and affection!
For dogs, you know exactly what they’re feeling. Dogs will generally be all up in your face and showering you with love and licks! If they are feeling threatened or scared, they will either growl or shrink back respectively. Cats could be a little more subtle with their emotions. They have a certain grace to them when they express their emotions and what they are currently experiencing.
The best way to communicate more effectively with your cat is to observe her behavior and learn about her boundaries and behavior. One of my cats, Baby or Gami (I call her different names depending on my mood) does not really like being petted but she loves to give slow blinks. As mentioned in my other article, a slow blink is one way a cat expresses love and deep levels of trust. To help bridge the language barrier between human and cat, here are 6 more ways your cat says “I love you!”
The Headbutt of Love
This is one of the biggest ways to tell your cat is really digging you right now! The headbutt of love, otherwise known as headbunting. When you have a nice bond going with your cat, you may find them to come strolling along just to start bumping their head against you.
This is their way of showing you some love and it is also their way of asking to be petted! My adopted feral Diba will come walking over from her window perch sometimes and start headbunting my hands. Diba loves head massages and she knows she’s going to get a good head rub in if she does this! It’s a really nice bonding moment as it took months of time and effort to adopt this little furball. Cats are really appreciative of the things you do for them and will lovingly show you.
It’s funny cause when Diba does this, my other cat Cornelius will always get jealous and make his way over too. He’ll then start to headbunt my other hand and demand some attention as well! Double petting action. Cats are so cute and interesting!
Headbunting is also a way of letting you know that you are part of your cat’s inner circle. Physical touch is a very intimate and loving gesture that shows a deep sign of trust. It shows that you are like family to your cat. Also, your cat likes to rub herself all over you to mark you with her scent. This indicates that you are important enough for them to leave their smell on you! How delightful!
Bringing You Gifts
None of my cats have personally done this, but bringing gifts and presents are another way your cat shows you affection. Cats are hunters by nature and they have to kill often in order to satiate their hunger. When a cat hunts for you and brings you its kill, it is her way of showing that she cares and that she wants to feed you. This is typically the behavior found in cats who are allowed outdoors but could also be found in indoor cats as they might bring you toys.
Many cat owners may be turned off by the little dead animals they might find on their doorsteps, or maybe even in their house of their cat is allowed to freely go outside! Although it may seem gruesome, it really is a loving gesture as your cat wants to ensure that you are fed and get your much-needed nutrients!
Cats are hunters by nature. By showing you their kill and sharing it with you, it indicates that your cat has accepted you into her pack and is willing to look after you. It also shows that your cat wants to make you proud by doing what she does best, being a cat and hunting! So don’t get mad, but rather appreciate the gift!
You can see my belly, but don’t touch!
This is a weird one, but when your cat lays on her back and shows you her stomach, this is actually a sign of deep trust! Cats instinctively know that their bellies are the most vulnerable spot in their body. It contains all of their organs and it would be really bad if their stomach got damaged in any way!
As such, when they lay on their back, this shows that they really trust you and know that you won’t harm them in any way. That’s why when you try and rub their belly, some cats will get all defensive and start scratching you. Your cat didn’t show you her stomach in order for you to rub it… She shows you her tummy because she trusts you and knows you wouldn’t hurt her. By you touching her most sensitive area, it pretty much made your cat go all “yo yo, what the fudge! You’re not supposed to touch me!” So whenever your cat shows you her belly, just appreciate it from a distance and maybe give her a head rub,
As you spend more time with your cat, you may ultimately build a relationship where your cat will allow you to touch her belly. Diba will never let me touch her stomach. She shows me her bully because she trusts me but will claw me to death if I touched her inappropriately! However, Cornelius loves belly rubs! He didn’t like it at first and would always slap me or push me away with his hind legs. But with some time and practice, Cornelius began to realize that belly rubs were the bee’s knees! This is a huge sign of trust!
Rubbing Against You
Whenever you come back home from your outside adventures, you may find that your cat will come strolling over just to start rubbing herself all over you and your legs! This is another sign that your cat loves you and is welcoming you back home!
Rubbing against you is a way for your cat to put her scent all over you. Cats do this when they feel close to you and they want to mark you as their own! Cats are very territorial creatures and enjoy marking things that are theirs with their scent. You read that right, your cat is marking you too. You are her belonging… her human slave!
Cats also rub against you for physical intimacy. Much like they head bunt you to show you their love, cats will stroll between your legs and rub themselves all over you to show you how much they care and how much they want your attention. Your cat may even start walking all over you and demand you to pet them! Cornelius does this sometimes. He’ll just walk over and start rubbing his body all over me and lay on my lap. There really is no stopping this. When Cornelius wants attention, he wants it.
Purr Purr Purr
Another big indication of cats enjoying your presence is the sound of purrs. This beautiful sound is made when a cat is feeling relaxed, content, and happy! You can’t miss it… the deep vibrational purr… it’s something we cat owners cannot sleep without! It’s rather soothing to listen to as your cat curls up next to you.
Purring is an expression of love. When you live with your cat for a long time, you’ll begin to know the triggers to her purrs. You will find the sweet spots of your cat and know exactly where and how to scratch them! Head rubs are usually adored by cats and will often cause them to purr uncontrollably.
There really could be many reasons why a cat purrs. Not only is a sign of contentment and pleasure, but purring is also a noise that cats emit when they are hurt or in pain. Stemming back from kittenhood, purring helps a kitten and her mother tell each other they are both doing okay and they are together. It is a sign of bonding and connection. If a cat purrs around you, just know that she is really enjoying your company and appreciates you!
When a cat likes you, she will want to spend time with you. You may find that your cat will follow you around and go to the same places that you do as you move around your house. Cats do this in order to stay with you and to grab your attention. Maybe they want some treats. Maybe they want to be petted. Or maybe they want to go outside. Whatever it is, your cat needs you for something and will relentlessly follow in your footsteps.
Cats have many ways of expressing their love for you! You will find that each one of your cats is unique and behaves differently. Try spending some time observing your cat and try to understand her quirks and behavior. As always, I wish you and your cat all the best! Be safe!