Hepper is reader-supported. When you buy via links on our site, we may earn an affiliate commission at no cost to you. Learn more.

Do Cats Like Having Their Whiskers Rubbed? (Suggested Petting Areas & FAQs)

Krystal Facey

By Krystal Facey

Fingers touching a cat's whiskers

Whether you have owned cats for years or are a new feline parent, you might have noticed cats are particular in terms of where you can and cannot touch them. Cats are tricky in this sense because they may like head scratched, but only for a minute at a time. Or maybe they are a little more forgiving and don’t mind their backs being stroked.

But what about having their whiskers touched? Do cats like having their whiskers rubbed?

Sorry to burst your bubble, but cat’s whiskers are rather sensitive! They do not like them being touched. Keep reading to find out more about these mysterious creatures.

Can You Touch a Cat’s Whiskers? Do They Like That?

Now you may be wondering, if cats have sensitive whiskers, can they be touched at all without bothering them? Well, their whiskers fall into the same category as their bellies, paws, and tails, so you may be risking a swat or hiss if you try to play with or grab a cat’s whiskers. You will generally want to avoid rubbing or touching cat’s whiskers when you are showing them affection, as you might even notice they are also avoiding you touching that area of their faces.

If you have a less picky cat who doesn’t get bothered by a little toe-bean rub, your cat may be less sensitive to touching their whiskers. This is something you might want to experience with your own cat over time and see what makes them uncomfortable.

close up of cat whiskers
Image Credit: Nennieinszweidrei, Pixabay

Do Cats Feel Pain When Their Whiskers Fall Off?

While it’s never a good idea to toy with anything on a cat’s face, there are some areas that won’t cause them pain if you see, for example, their whiskers dropping off. Even in some cases you will notice whiskers randomly around your home, but there’s no reason to panic when this happens. Sometimes cats will scratch at their face and a whisker will fall off! This doesn’t hurt them by any means (the vigorous scratching would hurt more, if at all). Think of whiskers like eyelashes, they fall off over time but will grow back.

Whiskers are very important for cats as they are used for balance, spatial recognition around them while prowling around a new space, and helps them communicate. Never purposely remove whiskers from a cat’s face.

Where Do Cats Like to Be Pet the Most?

With regular cat behavior, their favorite places to be pet by their human companions is around their heads—this includes the top of the head, neck, and chin. They are also generally fans of pets on their backs, and some cats like belly rubs just as much as their canine counterparts.

Observing the quirks of our feline friends can be puzzling at times; they are amusing and enjoy odd things that we might not always get, but we love them anyway. The Hepper Hi-Lo Scratcher is a tool we can provide that shows our cats our acceptance and affection, catering to their scratching instincts and peculiar desires. It’s like a symbol of love, providing them a space to be a cat, and welcoming their unique behaviors.

cat in living room playing with hepper hi-lo cat scratcher while in highest position

It’s important to safely navigate around your cat and learn over time where they like being pet the most. It can affect the trust levels between you and your pet, or even an injury. These kinds of negative interactions can lead to mistrust in the relationship and surrendering pets.

Final Thoughts: Cats and Human Affection

Cats do have unique personalities and no two cats will be exactly alike. If some cats have experienced a home with little ones who liked to chase them and pull on their tails, that could be a sensitive area for them where they show a lot of irritation or aggression when their tails are touched. Keep yourself and your cat safe by being patient with them and learning their preferences when it comes to showing affection.


Featured Image Credit: Jumpstory

Related Articles

Further Reading

Vet Articles

Latest Vet Answers

The latest veterinarians' answers to questions from our database

HEPPER_SMALLS_OPPORTUNITY_2023