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Speaking Cat: Feline Body Language, Translated

(Photo Credit: Shutterstock)

Whenever I see a cat, I greet him by blinking slowly. Cats don’t like it when you stare at them. It’s intimidating; no one likes to be stared at!

When a cat stares at something, the cat is often ready to attack. That’s why blinking reassures them that you are not a threat and not going to attack them. Usually, when I blink, cats blink back and slowly approach me, allowing me to pet them. To me blinking is just one of the many forms of cat communication. It’s like a cat hand shake.

Decoding Your Cat’s Body Language

(Picture Credit: Getty Images)
(Picture Credit: Getty Images)

To speak cat you need to observe and understand a cat’s body language. A cat’s ears and tails will tell you a lot about their moods. A cat’s ears are quite amazing. Cats have over 20 muscles in those tiny ears and they can make them move in all sorts of directions. They can swerve forward, backward, up and down, and move in different directions.

Straight up, slightly pointed forward ears are signs of a happy cat. If you pet her and her eyes close, you have a very content kitty.

Twitching ears, just like twitching people, are nervous. A soft coo from you will ease the situation. If the twitching persists and the ears move from front to back, it’s a good idea to back off. And if their ears are flat against their heads, stay far away. Flat ears means she is about to attack. It’s also a form of self defense; keeping her ears close to her head protects them.

If you ever see a cat with one ear in the forward position and one in the back, these opposite movements means ambivalence. Gently reassure her and speak softly. Blinking is good too.

A Cat’s Tail

(Picture Credit: Getty Images)
(Picture Credit: Getty Images)

If your cat’s tail violently moves back and forth in a swishing motion, she is agitated. This is a good time to toss her a toy that she can pounce on or leave the room until she quiets down.

If her tail is held high and is slightly quivering, your cat is happy to see you. The same can be said if her tail is straight out with a slight quiver and curl at the end.

A raised tail with a soft curve in it means he is alert and happy.

If your cat’s tail is low and puffed up, he is fearful. Any time your cat bristles his fur, he is doing so to appear bigger to scare enemies away.

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