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Why Do Cats Love The “Pspsps” Sound? 4 Likely Reasons

Nicole Cosgrove Profile Picture

By Nicole Cosgrove

Woman playing and talking with her cat

If you have a cat in your family, you’re probably familiar with using this noise to call your cat or get its attention. “Pspsps” is a sound humans have long made with their mouths as a means to summon a cat, and cats often respond by running to their owners.

When it comes down to it, why do cats love this noise so much? Most likely because it is a familiar sound that gets their attention. Whether you’re curious about the answer or just want to make your beloved pet happy, here are some likely reasons why cats can’t seem to get enough of that “pspsps” sound.

Why Do Cats Love The “Pspsps” Sound?

1. It’s a Familiar Noise

Cats are creatures of habit and enjoy the familiarity of certain noises or smells that they’re used to. That’s why cats often respond positively when their owners make the same noise over and over again—it’s become a conditioned response! The “pspsps” sound is no exception, and cats often recognize it as a comforting noise they know.

But what if you’ve never made this sound ever in your life, and your household is the only place your cat’s ever called home? There’s a good chance your kitty will respond to it, even though it’s never heard that sound!

Why is that, though? Let’s explore some other possibilities to get to the bottom of this mysterious sound.

Tuxedo ragdoll cat sitting inside the house
Image Credit: Liao Zhiwo Henry, Shutterstock

2. It Sounds Like Purring

The “pspsps” noise bears a striking similarity to the way cats purr. That’s why cats might be drawn to it—it’s a comforting reminder of their own natural noises. Not only that, but it may even calm them down in times of stress or anxiety. Many cats love the “pspsps” sound as a way to relax and be soothed, like how humans often use soothing music or nature sounds.

3. It’s Attention-Grabbing

Of course, there’s another reason cats may respond favorably to this noise: it gets their attention! The sound is loud but not overly intrusive, and cats can understand it. So, when they hear it, they know they’re being called by their owners—and that’s something every cat loves!

But perhaps there’s more to the noise than just its attention-grabbing capabilities…

cat rubbing its head against the owner's legs
Image Credit: Jaromir Chalabala, Shutterstock

4. It’s Just the Right Frequency

In what is perhaps the best answer, at least scientifically, cats respond to this noise because it falls in the right frequency range. The sound of a “pspsps” just so happens to be within the normal hearing range of cats—between 48 Hz and 85 Hz.

So, it’s the perfect noise to get your cat’s attention without having to shout or make too much of a ruckus. That makes it doubly appealing to cats, who are naturally drawn to the sound and recognize it as something they can understand.

Helpful Tips to Get Your Cat to Listen to You

Are you having a hard time connecting with your cat and getting it to obey you? Maybe you’ve tried the “pspsps” noise, but your cat isn’t responding. Well, don’t worry—there are some helpful tips you can use to get your kitty’s attention.

Try a Different Sound

First of all, make sure you’re using the right sound. Some cats may respond better to a higher-pitched “sssss” instead of a “pspsps,” so experiment with different noises to see what your cat responds best to.

Reward Good Behavior

In addition, rewarding good behavior is key in training cats. Whenever your kitty does something you approve of, be sure to give it positive reinforcement with a treat or a special toy. That will help reinforce the idea that listening to you is beneficial and rewarding.

woman hang giving treat to a cat
Image Credit: StockSnap, Pixabay

Be Patient

Lastly, be patient with your cat as it learns to obey you. Cats can take time to adjust to new commands or sounds, so don’t expect too much from your pet right away. With patience and some positive reinforcement, your kitty will soon be purring along (or “pspsps-ing” rather!) to your commands in no time!

There’s more than one way to get a cat’s attention, so don’t be afraid to experiment with the sounds you make. Whether it’s “pspsps” or something else entirely, a little bit of patience and determination can go a long way in getting your feline friend to listen to you.


The age-old “pspsps” sound carries a lot of mystery and intrigue. While we may never know for certain why cats love it so much, there are some plausible theories as to why this noise might be appealing to them.

Use it for everything from training to soothing your pet, but make sure you use it correctly and with positive reinforcement! With the right sound and a bit of patience, your cat can learn to respond to “pspsps” when you call.

Featured Image Credit: Mira Arnaudova, Shutterstock

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