Home Cat How-Tos How to pet a cat: All there is to know

How to pet a cat: All there is to know

Petting a cat may be simple for those already familiar with cats unlike those that haven’t spent much time with cats. It is very necessary to know the rules of approaching and touching a cat. Knowing where to touch and when to stay away, can help to ensure that both of you enjoy the cat-human interactions. This article takes about guidelines on how to pet a cat.


If a cat wants you to pet them, they will let you know by bumping their head against you, holding their tail up, slow eye blinking, kneading, purring, meowing, licking themselves in some spots like the ear, lips, and cheek, sitting on your laps but bear in mind that if a cat fidgets while sitting on your laps, just know that it wants to lie there and relax. 


  • TRY TO ESTABLISH TRUST BETWEEN YOU AND THE CAT: This can be done by reaching out to their nose with your finger and letting them sniff you. If the cat sniffs your hand and then rubs its chin or the sides of its head against it then the cat wants to be petted but if the cat stares and walks away from you when you extend your fingers, then you should avoid touching your cat.
  • FOCUS ON THE AREAS WITH SCENT GLANDS: These areas include the chin, areas between the ears, cheeks, and side of the face. While touching the chin, use your fingertips to rub the chin. If your cat juts out its chin, it shows it enjoys it.

The base of the ears is another scent making spots for cats. Use pads of your fingers and apply gentle pressure. If your car enjoys it, it will bump its head against you.

Another scent gland spot is the cheeks, gently rub your hand against the cheeks, if the cat likes it, it may rotate its whiskers forward.

  • LEARNING WHAT TO AVOID AND AREAS NOT TOUCH: Stay away from the tummy, when cats are relaxed, they might roll onto their back exposing their belly, don’t take it as an opportunity to rub their belly because unlike dogs cats don’t like their tummy to be touched. The stomach is a vulnerable area where all the vital organs are located, so lots of cats will bite you if you touch there.

Many cats do not like their feet to be touched. Approach the feet with caution, do not play with the cat’s feet unless you know the cat very well. Start by touching the one foot once with your finger if the cat pulls its foot away, hisses flattens its ears or walks away then it is a sign that you should stop.

Do not pat the cat at all as most of the cat dislikes it. If you are not used to being around cats, it is better to not pat the cat unless you want to risk a bite or scratch.

Petting a cat makes you and your cat feel happy. Knowing how to pet a cat very well can help the cat to release stress, lower blood pressure, and reduces the chances of a heart attack.



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