Understanding Cats: A Guide for Cat Owners

November 6, 2019
There are a number of things that cat owners ask themselves when it comes to feline behavior. Today's guide to understanding cats will provide the answers you're looking for.

Cats are truly special creatures that we as human beings often fail to understand. Independent, curious, stubborn, and beyond intelligent, felines bring joy into our lives with their games, purring, and meowing. In this article, we’ll provide you with a guide to understanding cats.

Understanding cats

Cat owners can affirm that understanding cats isn’t always a simple task. How can we pamper them? Why don’t they greet us when we get home from work? What does it mean when they move their tails from side to side?

Pay attention to the following guide to understanding cats. Whether you’re already a cat owner or looking to become one, the following information will surely be useful.

A cat staring intently.
Source: Javier González

1. Cats understand what you say to them

2. Cats have two ways of communicating

We’ve already clarified that cats respond to their owner’s calling when they feel like it. But what happens when they want to express something? Cats use sounds: meowing and purring. They use the former to get your attention or ask for something, such as food, petting, or play. They also resort to meowing when they are angry or afraid.

When it comes to purring, this is a way for cats to express that they’re feeling very content with their situation. You can hear this little “motor” when they sleep, when you scratch under their chins, or when they groom themselves.

3. Cats prefer to be alone

Another issue when it comes to understanding cats is that they have very independent personalities. Unlike dogs, cats choose to be alone, which can sometimes be hard for human beings to understand. Cats prefer a warm box over being around a lots of animals or people. And they’re more than happy to stay home alone all day and sleep peacefully on the couch.

This doesn’t mean that cats are antisocial by any means. Cats simply feel more secure when they’re alone. Furthermore, they’re very self-sufficient. They can find their own food and bathe themselves just fine.

4. Cats love faucet water

If you have cats, then you’ve probably asked yourself why they drink from the faucet even when they have a bowl full of water. The answer is very simple: because they prefer running water over still water. This has to do with the relationship between stagnant water and illnesses involving bacteria, parasites, and viruses.

5. Cats are more active during the night

Many have a hard time understanding cats when it comes to the schedules they keep. Cats are prone to sleeping all day, but as soon as their owners turn off the lights, it’s as if their cats come to life. Just the opposite of us humans! They spend the night jumping from one spot to another, trying to trap things, playing with their toys etc. They climb on the bed or the couch as if they were possessed.

All of this, of course, has an explanation. Firstly, this behavior has to do with their instincts as nocturnal predators. Secondly, their eyes are prepared for seeing in the dark, which makes them more active when the sun goes down.

A cat in the dark.

6. Cats rub against everything

One of the feline habits that most catches our attention is how cats seem to rub up against everything in their path. It’s important that we understand this behavior, as it has to do with their need to mark their territory. Cats are extremely territorial. Therefore, they don’t want anyone else sleeping in their bed or touching their toys.

So, how do they mark each object (or person) as their own? Leaving their personal aroma! Cats need to rub their faces against the things to leave their scent and mark their territory.

Source of main image: Dani