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How to Pet a Cat: What to Do and What to Avoid Absolutely

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How to Pet a Cat

If the question may seem a little naive, it is nevertheless a concern of many people. For between the “what is said” and reality, there is sometimes a whole world.

It is moreover certain computer graphics that led me to make this article. Because I find that one makes very quickly generalities, by forgetting the single character of each feline.

So how to caress your cat, and a foreign cat ? How to know what he prefers ? And of course what should not be done?

How to Pet a Cat Properly?

The essential rule is to cuddle your cat when he comes to you. Yes, the more we chase a cat, the less he will come to us.

It is always necessary to go gently, without shouting (notice to the children!) and not to turn back.

That’s seen, all right. But where can we caress it while being sure not to get a scratch?

The Caresses your Cat Likes

Stroking your Cat on the Chin

Very spontaneously we tend to caress the cat on his chin, cheeks, or on his skull. Indeed these zones are often appreciated. However, we should not think that this is a given for all cats!

Already, because there is caressing and stroking. And because what seems great to us can be much less so for our cats.

And besides it is the same for us humans: it is not because you love to have your feet scratched that it will be the same for your best friend!

So it’s not because it says somewhere that “cats love to be petted on the chin or skull” that it will be the same for your cat. Or your neighbor’s cat!

The Cat and Petting on the Belly

In the same lineage it is customary to say that the cat does not like to cuddle on the belly, because it is a sensitive area. Yes… and no! Once again, if many cats don’t like it, many others appreciate a good tummy rub.

My cat, for example, is an absolute fan of massages that are very pressed on her belly. It feels as if her entrails are being stirred deeply.

The Caresses on the Base of the Cat’s Tail

Another sensitive, double-edged area is the base of the tail. It is indeed a very sensitive part.

We can notice that the cat raises his butt, a little like a female in heat would “call” to be covered. But it is not only females that have this behavior. The males are also sensitive to it.

The trick is that the pleasure is sometimes such that the cat can have a violent reaction in return. As if the pleasure is too strong and it ends up hurting.

So it’s better to cuddle a little… But just don’t overdo it!

How Do I Know Which Caress my Cat Prefers?

What is important is obviously to know what your cat prefers or not!

To find out, it’s best to take it easy. When your cat is on you or near you, cuddle him quietly, where you know it’s ok for him.

And, by bringing your hand close to his belly or head, or any other part (flank, paws, chest…) observe his reactions.

If his tail swings, or if he spontaneously starts to purr for example, it will rather mean that he wants it to stop! Same if he pushes you away with his paw.

If your cat turns around and gives a “false” bite, if he grunts or growls, then there’s no room for doubt: he doesn’t like it!

And of course if he gives you a real one, the answer will have been very clear…

On the contrary, if his coat is smooth, his tail remains motionless, he purrs softly, he squints… then you are probably right!

How to pet a cat: Pay close attention to your cat’s reactions – Photo by Yury Likhtarovich from Pixabay

The Story of my Cat Addicted to Petting on her Stomach

The day I knew that my cat loved to cuddle on her belly, she was asleep beside me. Then she woke up and meowed at me in a funny way…

I put my hand on her back with the intention of feeling what made her meow like that. I put all my heart into appeasing her. In doing so, I looked to see if her tail did not move, nor her ears, etc…

She was quiet.

Then she turned around a little and my hand was flat on her belly. Still no sign of irritation. On the contrary, I felt that she was a little hard. So I put all my love into relaxing her guts just with my energy of love if I may say so.

I didn’t cuddle her: my hand didn’t move, it was just resting on her belly. It lasted at least 10 minutes. Then I started making small circular movements with the palm of my hand. Slowly. Then I felt her relax completely…

When I adopted Princess, she was 5 months old and she was extremely fearful. It took at least a year and a half before she came to bed next to me.

Cuddles were rare and short because she never seemed reassured. But since that famous day, Princess has always come back to me, and even to my partner, for belly massages!

The Present Moment in the Caress with your Cat

I’m not trying to convert you to the power of energies or anything! I’m just telling you my story, and the most important thing to remember is that it’s the intention that’s passing.

And the moment you take, full and whole in what you do! If you cuddle your cat mechanically, without intention to give love, chances are that it will be less appreciated, and that your cat won’t ask for more.

Petting a Stray or Foreign Cat

When you meet a new cat, first let him caress himself… Present him your finger, you will see that normally he will approach the nose to feel it! Then let your hand go.

He may rub his cheek on it on his own. This has at first rather a meaning of marking: he integrates your smell and puts his own on top of it.

But if he repeats his gesture, it probably indicates that he appreciates the caress on the cheek!

Never force a cat to be stroked. Even if he seems to like it, don’t cuddle too long!

You may also have to deal with a cat that seems very cuddly because it almost overly rubs your legs or arms… It’s tempting to want to cuddle it even more…

But be careful, because it may be a female in heat. An overflow of caresses will be able, as explained above on the base of the tail, to turn over in aggressive reaction!

What Not to Do with a Cat

You will have understood it, it is not necessary to caress a cat where he does not like…

Then, if your cat is playing, don’t cuddle him! Same if he is asleep.

I know, I know, he’s too adorable when he’s asleep. I know it’s hard not to succumb to his cute face buried between his paws…

Yes, but you have to restrain yourself! This is part of another essential rule which is to never wake up a sleeping cat.

Other Reminder Points

  • One does not shout (even with joy),
  • One avoids stroking back (although, once again, some cats appreciate it!).
  • We stop as soon as we see the slightest sign of annoyance!

Things to Remember!

Remember that the more you let your cat come to you at his own pace, the more you will respect his preferences and listen to his signs of disagreement, and the more he will trust you.

This means that your relationship will be really full of complicity !

Cat Photo by StockSnap from Pixabay

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