Despite their infamously aloof nature, cats are actually very affectionate creatures.
Because cats rely so heavily on instinct, they’re constantly on the lookout for a threat - even our most lazy, well-kept fur balls are prone to paranoia. So showing your cat some affection and making her feel safe can go a long way toward easing anxiety, decreasing unwanted behaviors, and improving your cat’s health.
Whether your cat is your “one and only” or if you split your affections between your cat and your human counterpart, Valentine’s Day is the time for showing some love.
Here’s how you can speak your cat’s love language and form a deeper, loving bond.
All the Good Smells
Your honey may love roses on Valentine’s Day, but your cat wants a different sort of fragrance. Cats show their family-ness by mixing their own scent with that of the other critters in their family. When cats live together, they often rub their heads on one another to mix the oils from the glands in front of their ears with the oils of the one they love.
When your cat comes by to give you a nice head rub against your shin or shoulder, let her show you some love. Then return the gesture by rubbing her head, back, or tummy with your hand. The oils from your hand will mix with hers and she’ll be a happy Valentine.
Have Fun With Your Feline
Another way cats show their love for and comfort with you is by engaging in a bit of play. Feline-playtime looks much different than dog- or human-playtime. In fact, something as simple as turning on the faucet and letting your cat lick or bat at the water is fun for your cat, reduces stress, and (of course) encourages hydration.
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Many cats also love playing fetch, too - although this may be an acquired taste that you’ll need to ease your cat into. Choose a safe object that your cat can carry in her mouth. For some, this could be something as simple as a cotton swab while others may need something a bit fancier. We love this set of 10 cat toys for under $10.
Not only will your cat love bonding with you during your special play adventures, but exercise will improve your cat’s health, reduce stress, and help ensure you enjoy a nice long journey together.
Kneading to Cuddle
Just like you love cuddling with your sweetheart, your cat loves cuddling with you. Oftentimes cuddle time is preceded by kneading. Cats knead for a number of reasons, including to self-soothe, to mimic feeding behaviors from kittenhood, and to bond with a parent figure.
If your cat is a kneader, embrace it - especially if she uses you as her dough. Because cats like to extend and retract their claws when they knead, this can be a bit uncomfortable for our delicate human skin.
To protect you and encourage bonding with your cat, use a blanket or mat (we like this convertible cat cave/mat/bed) to cover your lap. This will also create a soft surface that holds your combined scents that your cat can lay on for comfort whenever you’re away.
We love all cats and all cat parents. So show us some love, too!