Kitty Communication 101

Cats are quite mysterious little furballs. We may never entirely understand why Fluffy sleeps so much, or why she is so obsessed with boxes. However, our feline friends do have a way of getting their points across to us. Read on as a London, ON vet discusses kitty communication.


Did you know that kitties can make over 100 different sounds? Our feline pals have a wide variety of vocalizations, from meows to chirps to yowls. And, while some furballs are more talkative than others are, many of them respond when spoken to. Try mimicking your pet’s meows, and see what she does. Fluffy may get quite excited, and start rubbing against your legs, or hop into your lap for cuddles. (Then again, she may just ignore you. With cats, you really never know.)

Body Language

Cats actually communicate more through body language than anything else. Fluffy may put her ears back if she is annoyed, and will likely flatten them if she’s scared or threatened. You can roughly gauge how relaxed and happy your cat is by her position. For example, if your furball is draped over your sofa, sound asleep, even if you have company, she’s likely relaxed and content. And if your pet rolls over to offer you the chance to rub her belly, she is showing trust.

Signs Of Illness

One area where cats tend to be pretty secretive about is when they are sick. Fluffy can’t tell you if she is ill, and often instinctively tries to mask signs of sickness. Some red flags to watch for are hiding, poor grooming, changes in thirst or appetite, vomiting, diarrhea, lethargy, respiratory issues, and unusual behavior or vocalizations. Call your vet immediately if you see any of these symptoms.

Mixed Signals

Our feline pals can sometimes be a little hard to read. Fluffy may playfully bat at your shoelaces, and then bite you when you try to extricate your foot from her grasp. She also sometimes changes her mind rather abruptly about whether she wants to get petted or not. Don’t try to figure these mood swings out: just go with the flow. Always let your kitty dictate when she wants you to pet her or play with her.

Do you have questions about your cat’s health or care? Please reach out to us, your London, ON vet clinic, anytime. We’re here for you!

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