Why Do Cats Knead?

Why Do Cats Knead?

Is your furry bestie among the best "biscuit makers" in town? Have you ever wondered why your kitty insists on pummelling your favourite wool blanket? Then read on to learn more about this quirky behavior from our feline friends.

Kneading, also known as "making biscuits" or "bread-making," is a common behavior observed in cats of all ages. It involves rhythmic pushing and alternating of their front paws against a soft surface, such as a blanket, pillow, or even your lap.

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While the exact reason behind this behavior isn't fully understood, several theories shed light on why cats knead:

🐈‍⬛ Instinctual Behavior

Kneading is believed to be a natural instinct that stems from kittenhood. Nursing kittens instinctively knead their mother's belly to stimulate milk flow. As they grow older, this behavior may persist as a comforting and soothing gesture reminiscent of their early bonding experiences with their mother.

🎯 Territory Marking

Cats have scent glands located in the pads of their paws. When they knead, they release pheromones from these glands onto the surface they're kneading. This scent-marking behavior serves as a way for cats to claim their territory and communicate their presence to other cats.

🔒 Comfort and Contentment

Kneading is often associated with feelings of comfort, security, and contentment. Many cats knead when they're feeling relaxed and happy, such as during cuddle sessions with their favorite human or while settling down for a cozy nap. It's their way of expressing love and affection towards their caregivers and surroundings.

😮‍💨 Stress Relief

On the flip side, some cats may knead as a way to alleviate stress or anxiety. Similar to how humans may engage in soothing activities like fidgeting or rubbing their hands together when feeling anxious, cats may knead to self-soothe and calm themselves down in stressful situations.

Cat Image
Cat Image

"Watching a cat knead is like witnessing a sweet reminder of their nurturing instincts and deep-rooted comfort in their surroundings." - Unknown

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Pay attention to your cat's body language, facial expressions, and vocalizations during kneading sessions to gauge their mood and emotional state.

Are they purring softly with closed eyes, indicating blissful contentment? Or do they seem tense or anxious, with wide eyes and twitchy movements? By closely monitoring your cat's behavior while they knead, you can better understand their needs and provide them with the care and support they deserve.

While these theories provide valuable insights into why cats knead, it's essential to remember that every cat is unique, and individual motivations may vary. Whether it's a comforting gesture, a territorial display, or simply a sign of contentment, kneading is just one of the many endearing behaviors that make our feline friends so special.

Is your kitty keeping active?

Moggie can tell you.

Is your kitty keeping active?

Moggie can tell you.

24/7 monitoring of your cat's behavior. Peace of mind for you, daily protection for them.

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