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Do Cats Like Humans Or Do They Just Tolerate Us? 7 Signs of Affection

Nicole Cosgrove Profile Picture

By Nicole Cosgrove

happy cat with closed eyes hug owner

It’s a common misconception that cats, unlike dogs, do not show love and affection to their owners. While cats may seem cold and indifferent at times, they have their unique ways of showing us their love. Many small acts of love your cat will exhibit daily such as purring and greeting you at the door, will tell you how much your cat actually cares. Even if your cat is not the most cuddly, it will eventually exhibit some form of affection toward you, meaning it likes you.

If you’re wondering whether your cat is genuinely fond of you or just thinks of you as a convenient roommate, then this article can provide some helpful answers.

Does My Cat Like Me?

Cats can be quite affectionate beings, depending on their temper and environment. Earning a cat’s trust and unconditional love can indeed be challenging at first, but after some effort and patience, you will notice significant improvement fast. While cats may not show love in a conventional way and may not enjoy cuddling with you constantly, there will be other signs of its love. If you are a devoted pet parent, providing your pet with unconditional love, they will recognize your intent and eventually reciprocate these feelings.

The 7 Signs Your Cat Loves You

1. Following you around

Cat welcomes his owner at home
Image Credit: Jaromir Chalabala, Shutterstock

Your cat will follow you around wherever you go—it may even follow you into the bathroom at some point. They will follow you around the house and even outdoors if they trust you, and you may notice them weaving around your legs.

2. Waiting for you at the door

If your cat enjoys your company, it will feel lonely and sad whenever you leave, even for short trips to the grocery store. You may notice your cat waiting for you at the door or running towards you to greet you when you come home.

3. Kneading and grooming

cat lying on passenger seat in a car while kneading owner's hand
Image Credit: RJ22, Shutterstock

If your cat trusts you unconditionally, it will want to be close to you, and you may even notice the cat kneading in your lap. After a while, your cat may even begin to groom you by licking your skin, and when they trust you fully, they will let you groom them.

4. Staring at you

If your cat is lying next to you or on your lap, and you think it’s asleep but instead find it staring at you—don’t be alarmed. Your cat is probably staring at you because it adores and admires you. If you make eye contact with them, you will notice your cat is blinking slowly while maintaining eye contact.

5. A specific type of meowing

Tabby cat meows with its mouth open
Image Credit: Kaan Yetkin Toprak, Shutterstock

While meowing is quite common for a cat and they do it a lot throughout the day, they’ll use a certain type of meow to show their love. When you talk to them, pet them, or cuddle with them, cats tend to respond in a quiet, soft, and short meow.

6. Purring

As we all know, cats tend to purr when they feel content and safe in your arms. They enjoy your presence, love, and affection and will show it by purring.

7. Sleeping by your side

cat sleeping a bearded man
Image Credit: Vitalis83, Shutterstock

While this is the least common of all the signs, it is a sure sign that your cat trusts you entirely. If your cat sleeps by your side or is cuddled against you, it means it seeks comfort from you and trusts that you’ll always protect it.

How To Make Your Cat More Affectionate

If your cat is not as affectionate as you’d like, and only on rare occasions it shows fondness, there’s no need to despair. There are ways you can help your cat learn how to show their feelings more often. One of the most important things you should do when raising your cat is socialize it from an early age and reinforce only positive behavior.

It is essential to earn your cat’s trust and not force it. Respect their personal space and their need to be alone in a place they feel safe. It is crucial for you to remain calm without pushing your cat. It needs to learn that it is always safe to be around you.

Handle your cat gently and with care, and don’t force them or expose them to potentially stressful situations. Even feral cats can become affectionate over time, by feeling safe and recognizing the smallest signs of fondness. Make sure to reinforce these small changes in behavior with treats and allow your cat to develop them slowly and with patience.

Create a Stronger Bond with Your Cat

Girl playing with her cat
Image Credit: Dora Zett, Shutterstock

If you and your cat have a unique and strong bond together, but you want to become even closer, there are some things you can do. Spend as much time with your cat as possible as this will make your cat feel much closer to you. Focus on activities you and your cat can do together, such as outdoor playtime, cuddling, bird watching, and playing with their favorite toy. Make your cat feel safe by creating a private and peaceful area where it can rest without being disturbed.

Final Thoughts

Cats are complex creatures and pet owners try their best to understand them. While they have patterns of behavior that we can’t understand at times, they have an even stranger way of showing they care for us at times. Even if you believe your cat is cold or indifferent, it will indeed exhibit some form of affection at one point. Teaching your cat to socialize and become affectionate early by reinforcing gentle behavior is crucial. If you are devoted and patient enough as a pet parent, you will surely notice signs of love and care in your cat.

Featured Image Credit: Veera, Shutterstock

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