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Why Does My Cat Lick Me? – “All you need is love and a cat”, every cat lover believes in this statement. However, have you ever wondered what your cat needs when it licks you? Have you ever asked yourself, why does my cat lick me? Many people assume a cat’s licking is a sign of love but is this the case when a cat licks you? So, let’s see what the possible reasons behind cats giving their owners a tongue bath are.
6 Reasons Why Does My Cat Lick Me?
#1 MY MUMMA USED TO DO IT!
There is a statement: “You are what you learn.” It can be said that this is the root cause of cats giving you tongue baths. Cat’s mother licks kittens not only to groom them but also to show their care, love and affection for them and they are just continuing what they have learned as a kitten. By licking you, they cherish you in the best possible way they know. According to them, they are keeping you clean and showing their affection to you.
#2 I Have Chosen You!
Cats don’t belong to us; we belong to them. If you are a cat owner, you must already know that cats are very different from dogs. If you feed dogs and show affection to them, dogs act like you are god, and if you do the same with cats, they act like they are god. That is how cats are. Maybe in the distant past, cats were worshipped as gods, and they have not forgotten this at all.
Similarly, they think they own some particular things, and you (cat owner) are one of those things. They have their own ways of marking their territory like cheek rubbing, scratching, and even urinating. Licking is also one of those ways. By licking you, they are showing other cats or animals that you belong to them.
#3 I am Stressed!
One of the common behaviors of cats or some other animals too is that they begin to lick themselves and other things when they are stressed or anxious. Thus, this is also a possible reason for your cat licking you. However, do not worry! At such times show them that you care about them. Play with them, feed them, but if your cat grooms itself excessively, to the extent that its skin begins to become raw or creates bald spots, you should consult a veterinarian (animal doctor).
#4 Pay Some Attention to Me!
One of the other possible reasons why your cat licks you is simply to gain your attention. Maybe they want you to pet them or feed them, or they just want to capture your attention for no reason. It may be just another attention-seeking cat behavior like meowing or pawing at you.
#5 Let me Pet You!
Though cats’ tongue hurts you but for them licking is like petting you. They love the way you pet them, but they can’t do the same that’s why they return your favor by licking you.
#6 Mmm…You are Tasty!
Besides other possible reasons, one of the other logic that answers every cat owner’s question, why does my cat lick me, is they simply like tasting something on your skin. Spilled something on yourself and saw your fluffy one slid up your side to lick you, that’s because it enjoys the taste. It may also enjoy getting the taste of salt that builds on your skin naturally.
10 Ways How Cats Show Love?
Yes, cats may act like they are the god, but it doesn’t mean that they don’t love you. Unlike dogs, cats do not have explicit ways to show their love. They have their own subtle ways of demonstrating their love and affection for you. She will not wag her tail or will not jump on you to show that she is excited; rather, you may see her relaxing in your home or meandering from one room to another.
You would want to have the best dogs for cat if you want them in the same house.
This may seem like she is not interested at all, but this is one of the ways which reflects she feels safe in your home with you. Similarly, cats have many other ways of showering their love on you; let’s dig in.
#1 Their Eyes Speak it All
Have you ever noticed your cat looking at you with half-closed eyes while blinking slowly? These eye blinks are called cat kisses. So, you are lucky if your cat does this with you. Plus, if they look at you with widely opened eyes, then also they are expressing great love and trust towards you, and you can return this love to them by giving them cat kisses.
6-8 hours of sleep is necessary for humans, but cats tend to sleep up to 16 hours a day. At this time, they are most vulnerable, so for sleeping, they choose a place that seems secure and trustworthy to them. So, if your cat sleeps beside you or on your lap, then you should be happy. What would be the better way for your cat to show her love to you?
If your cat loves you, she would like to rub her cheeks on you or to head-butt you with her forehead. Cats do this when they love something. This is one of her ways to mark her territory. By rubbing her cheeks on you, she is leaving her scent on you. So when your cat does this with you, you should remember that now she owns you.
Have you seen small kids throwing themselves on the ground and start rolling? This usually happens when they want to show some tantrums. Cats also have a habit of rolling on the floor, but it doesn’t happen during a tantrum. When your cat walks or runs up to you or throws herself on the ground, at that particular time, she is showing that she is excited to see you and have you around her. It’s her lovely way to greet you. She wants you to pay attention to her and to play with her.
#5 Hunting & Gifting Prey
These fluffy ones may seem adorable to you, but after all, they are carnivores. Most of their time is spent in hunting. Either it is a bird, or a mouse, or just a toy, they can catch everything, and these things (their food) are very precious to them. Precious things are only shared with those who are close to your heart. So, if your cat shares her bounty with you, that means you are very close to her. It’s like she wants to tell you, “Are you worried about dinner, do not worry. I have brought it for you, my lucky one!” It’s her way of showing that she loves you and she cares about you.
#6 Elevator Butt Pose
She loves you, and her tail reflects her love for you. If you are having a cat as your pet, you must have seen her in the elevator butt pose with their front-end down, and tail flicked high. It is somewhat similar to offering hands to shake. Kittens do this posture with their mother to greet them, and adult cats continue this behavior to greet their loved ones. Their upright tail reflects their love for you.
For cats, meowing is a way of transmitting some messages. It reflects their emotional state. The more intensified the emotion is the stronger will her meow. However, shorter and high-pitched meows of cats show that they are feeling very comfortable around you. Have you ever seen any cats meowing at other cats usually? This rarely happens. Kittens just meow to their mothers and continuing this habit; they do not use these vocals with the people they don’t like. So, if your adult cat pesters you with lots of meows, that means she is interacting with you out of love.
Licking may seem to you like a cat’s favorite time pass as you see her most of the time licking herself or sometimes licking you too. However, this is something she has learned in her kitten hood. Kittens’ mothers lick them to groom them as well as to show their love and affection for them. They use the same technique to shower their love and affection for you. So if you are the one who wonders, “Why does my cat lick me”, then you have got the answer now. She licks you because she loves you.
Cat’s purring usually signifies contentment. Whenever a cat feels happy or relaxed, she starts making a low rhythmic sound without opening her mouth. Sometimes she also purrs in situations that can hardly be considered pleasant, like when she is ill or in pain. However, it is not common. She usually purrs in pleasant circumstances, such as during contact with another cat or human or while rubbing itself against an object. Thus, when you pet your cat, and she makes a purring sound, it means she is enjoying it.
Have you ever felt that your cat is on the verge of being aggressive, but sometimes this is not the actual case. You may think that your cat is biting you as she is angry or dont like you, but it signifies the opposite. Kittens knead at their mothers when they are being fed. So when a kitten or adult cat is applying the same thing to you that is a gesture of love. You can take it as a love bite.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
Q1 Ok, I got it that my cat licks me out of affection and love, but it hurts me. So, how can I stop her licking me?
Yes, when your cat licks you, it may hurt you sometimes, especially when your cat licks you excessively. This is because the cats’ tongue has unique back-facing barbs called papillae, and these barbs make her tongue feel like sandpaper. These papillae help the cats to clean themselves while licking, and when they lick you, they may think like they are cleaning you, but it is actually hurting you.
However, this thing is only known to you; your cat can’t understand this. Therefore, if you want your cat to stop licking you, then try to distract her by playing with her or by feeding her. Ensure that you don’t push her away and make her feel like you don’t care about her or don’t understand her. The best way to distract a cat is to play with her.
Q2 When should I worry about my cat’s licking habit?
As there are many reasons for your cat licking you, but if you see your cat licking herself excessively, especially to the extent that her skin begins to become raw or it creates bald spots, then it’s a red signal for you. You should consult a veterinarian (animal doctor) for it as soon as possible so that you can know what the real problem is.
Q3 My cat loves the bathroom so much. She follows me there too. Is this also her way of showing love?
One of the reasons for some cats to be so obsessed with bathrooms is that it seems like a playroom to them. There are so many things in the bathroom for them to play with. Plus, when your cat follows you in the toilet and rubs herself against your legs, then that means it’s her way of gaining your attention. It seems like she knows that you are trapped here for a few minutes, and now in this situation, when you are sitting on the toilet, and she is licking you, then you have no other option than to pet her.
Q4 My cat does not play with me. She just likes to sit and stare. Does that mean she doesn’t like me?
Different cats have different personalities and activity levels. Usually, cats show more interest in high-energy games at the age of 4-5 months, and once they reach adulthood, they might become ankle-rubbers who love to play a lot or become lap-sitters who prefer to sit and relax rather than playing. However, if you are still worried and want to be sure of her condition, then it’s better to consult a veterinarian.
Some people may think that dogs know how to love and cats know how to rule. However, cat lovers know that cats have different ways of expressing things. They love their humans, too; it is just they choose subtle ways to demonstrate their love and affection towards them.
Licking is also one of the ways of your cat showing you her love, but sometimes her tongue baths symbolize different things about her, like her stress and anxiety. Therefore, whenever your cat licks you, you should always give a thought, “Why does my cat lick me?’. The information in this article has been presented to you to help you to understand your cat somewhat better. So try to understand her more and keep her happy.