Sometimes you might look at your feline friend and wonder how to tell if a cat is happy. As an owner, you want the best for your cat. And a happy cat is more likely to be a healthy cat.
Just like humans, every cat is an individual and has a range of emotions. They can feel content, sad, afraid and annoyed. To keep your feline physically fit, you need to cater to their emotional needs and ensure they are happy.
From body language to vocalisations, cats show that they are happy in ways that you might not expect. Here we take you through a few of the signs that your cat is content.
How to tell if a cat is happy
One big giveaway with how to tell if a cat is happy is through their body language. If there is no obvious stiffness or tension, the cat is probably feeling relaxed. A cat that is sleeping with their paws tucked away or belly exposed is at ease.
Another sign to look out for is the tail. A cat’s tail normally shows what kind of mood they are in. When a feline approaches you with their tail standing straight up with a slight curve at the tip, this means that they are happy to see you.
Other signs to tell if a cat is happy is through their behaviours. If your cat is eating, drinking, grooming and sleeping regularly, they are probably content. Catering to your cat’s basic needs will help them to be in a good mood.
Sometimes it might look like your cat is smiling. While cute, it is unknown whether this is actually a sign that they are happy. Instead, there are other facial clues that you can pick up on.
Have you ever noticed your cat blinking slowly when looking at you? This shows that they are feeling happy in your presence. Let them know that you are happy too by slow blinking back!
A cat’s eyes and ears are very expressive. A content cat is more likely to have their ears facing forward but tilting back slightly. They tend to move in response to sounds and movement.
Most people know that cats purr but you might not know what this means. A gentle purr is usually a sign that our feline friends are feeling safe and happy. If they are purring while snoozing on your lap or when being stroked, you can assume that the cat is enjoying your company.
Chirping, also known as chattering, is another way your feline friend lets you know that they are happy. A chirp is a very quick and repetitive sound that sounds like a bird call. It can be a sign that your cat is excited.
A meow is saved especially for people. They are often used by cats to request attention or to initiate play. Different meows mean different things so it may take time to understand what your cat is trying to say.
Signs that a cat is unhappy
Now that we have gone through the signs of how to tell if a cat is happy, it is also important to understand when a cat may be feeling unhappy. Unfortunately, cats can feel stressed just like us. And they will exhibit this stress in different, and often subtle, ways.
The easiest sign to spot is when there is a change in appearance. When a cat’s ears are held back, their tail is tucked or fur is standing on end, this can indicate that they are not happy.
Along from this, changes in vocalisations can indicate that something is wrong. A loud, low-pitched yowl can be a sign of an unhappy cat. Meanwhile, excessive purring could show that your cat is attempting to comfort themselves.
If a cat loses interest in the things they normally love, this is another sign that your cat is feeling sad. This can include eating less, under grooming or playing less. On the flipside, if your cat is eating in excess or overgrooming, this too can be an indication of an unhappy feline.
How we ensure that your cat stays happy with us
When your cat stays with us, we understand that you are placing your family member in our care. That is why we try to make their stay with us as comfortable as possible.
The cattery is made up of chalets with indoor and outdoor spaces. They are fully insulated against extremes of temperature and are fitted with heaters. Each unit offers a generous amount of natural light and fresh air.
Every care is taken to make your cats as happy as possible during their stay. A lot of time is given to help them settle in. To make sure that they all receive enough stimulation, every cat gets dedicated cuddle and play time.
Normally, we would encourage cat parents to bring their feline’s favourite bedding and toys with them. We currently cannot do this with COVID restrictions. Instead, we try to replicate what your cat loves as closely as possible.