why does my cat knead my blanket
Ever wondered: Why do cats knead? Why does your cat stompPon her favorite bed or blanket (or your leg or chest) with her front paws, as though makingPdough for biscuits? Ever wondered why cat kneading seems to make her high, intoxicated with sweet memories of springtime and youth? Here are five cool things about cat kneading, aka cats making biscuits. Note: This is to be read on a knead-to-know basis. (Warning: There will be puns. )
1. Cat kneading is hypnotic Cats can become so relaxed while kneading that they enter a trancelike state, complete with drooling and a thousand-mile stare. Hey, Bubba Lee Kinsey, where d you go? I ll say to my gray tabby when he really loses himself in the moment and achieves a Zen-like state of enlightenment, which can only be broken by the sound of my other cat eating something Bubba wants. 2. Cat kneading is comforting Your cat has been kneading since she was a kittenP in fact, she kneaded her mom s belly to stimulate the flow of milk while she was nursing. This instinctive behavior is comforting to your kitty and can take her back to simpler times, much the way that eating a giant plate of macaroni and cheese and drinking some electric blue Kool-Aid can make you feel like a kid again (at least until you finish and realize your skinny jeans are, like, way tight now). 3. Your cat is kneading to tenderize you so she can eat you Cat kneading is called biscuit-making for a reason: Your cat is tenderizing your gamey flesh so you ll make a meal fit for a queen.
Not really! She s just trying to soften your cold, cold heart by way of your lap, of course. One reason cats knead is to make a soft bed or clear a space to doze. Their ancestors did this with tall grass or leaves; they do it with your jeans. This can involve claws. Sometimes it hurts but it s always nice to know you re kneaded. If the cat kneading is painful, try redirecting your cat s knead-iness to a pillow or a blanket, and keep her claws trimmed. Never punish your kitty for kneading, though, because the behavior is instinctive. 4. Your cat is kneading to mark you as her territory Your kitty has scent glands in her paws, so when she s kneading you she s also marking you as her own personal human. Yes, that s right your cat officially owns you. Stop acting like you didn t already know. 5. Your kneading cat might be a needy cat Sometimes cats knead when they want something. Maybe you re too involved with your computer monitor or that Law Order marathon for their liking. Maybe they want treats, and they want them now. Maybe they just want scratches behind the ears in that special place only you can reach. One thing is certain: When cat kneading combines with solicitation purring, you re really in trouble. If you haven t heard of solicitation purring, odds are you ve experienced it. Surprising no one, cats have developed and honed a purr that sounds vaguely like the cry of a human baby, and is specifically designed to manipulate us.
It s how your cat gets you to let her lick out your cereal bowl. And it works. Every time. Tell us: What do you think of cat kneading? Does your cat knead you? Thumbnail:PPhotography YColleenB_Pics Thinkstock. P Read more onPcat kneading on Catster. com:PP Why do cats knead? Cats are interesting creatures, with many that are easily recognized as being uniquely felineP the way they curl up tightly to take a nap, for example, or their characteristic grooming rituals after enjoying a meal. Cat kneading is another common feline behavior. The kneading isPa motion cats make by pushing in and out with their paws, alternating between right and left. Some cats knead with claws completely retracted, while others will extend their claws as they push in and retract as they pull back. So, why do cats knead? Let s take a look. First, let s look at how cats knead Kneading is sometimes colloquially referred to as , because the motion resembles a baker kneading dough. It is almost always done on a soft, pliable surface like a pillow, a comforter, another cat or kitten, or even your lap. OftenPcat kneading isPaccompanied by contented purring, and sometimes even by drooling as the cat relaxes its jaw. It s not uncommon for a cat to be in an almost trance-like state as it kneads with a steady, rhythmic motion. So, why do cats knead? Explanations forPwhy cats kneadPvary, but it is without doubt an instinctive trait. Newborn kittens knead their mother s belly as they snuggle close to nurse, and the motion is thought to stimulate the flow of milk through her nipples.
One rather outdated theory proclaims that cats that knead were separated from or weaned from their mother too early, and therefore continue the kittenish behavior into adulthood, yet nearly all adult cats knead, regardless of how or when they weaned. It s more likely that the instinctive behavior is simply comforting to cats. (Although some while they are kneading. ) Kneading may also go back to the days when wild cats patted down tall grass or shredded leaves to make a soft, fluffy bed for sleeping or giving birth. Through the ages, the behavior continues to a natural part of cat instinct before settling down for a comfortable catnap. There s also a more practical aspect to kneading. Cats have scent glands in the soft pads on the bottoms of their paws. When they knead, some of their unique scent is released onto the surface being kneaded, and that scent serves as a kind of territorial marker for any unfamiliar cats that might come along and try to stake a claim. So when your cat is kneading your lap, he s not only telling you he feels comfortable and secure, but he s claiming you as his own. ( is also a natural part of cat instinct that results in the cat leaving his own residual scent behind, as well as a visual marker-claw marks-that other cats can recognize. ) If your cat kneads you frequently, it s a good incentive to, in order to avoid being scratched or having your clothing snagged. (Just use aPcat nail trimmerPto nip off the sharp, curved tip of each claw, being careful not to cut down into the quick, where tiny blood vessels and nerves are located. ) You could also keep a folded towel next to your favorite chair, and use it to protect your lap as your cat kneads you with his paws.
If the kneading motion is uncomfortable enough to really bother you, you can try gently pulling your cat down into a lying position so he settles down and goes to sleep. Other tricks involve gently holding his front paws together, petting him, or distracting your pet with a or a. Pet behavior experts agree that it s not appropriate to punish a cat for natural and instinctive behaviors like kneading. Some female cats will knead frequently just before, as a signal to males of her willingness and ability to mate. As the estrus cycle continues, the cat will make that quickly escalate into that are an effort to get the attention of a male. She may also pace restlessly, become extremely affectionate and assume the mating position (head low, with raised hindquarters) when you pet her. It s impossible to discourage these natural behaviors, and the best way to eliminate the symptoms associated with the female estrus cycle is to. Thumbnail:PPhotography by VIZLAND/THINKSTOCK. Still wondering, Why do cats knead? Read more about cat kneading behaviors on Catster. com:P
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