8 Ways Cats Show Affection

8 Ways Cats Show Affection Featured Image
Cats are often thought of as independent creatures that don’t show much affection to their owners. Contrary to popular opinion, cats are actually very social animals and enjoy being around their chosen humans. They can be very affectionate and there are many different ways they show it.  If you’re a new cat owner and are only just starting to understand your cat’s behaviour, it can sometimes be easy to get disheartened when your cat doesn’t seem to be as sweet or affectionate as previous pets you’ve owned. The least you can do is to line up at a cat registration event and connect with other cat parents. Cats form strong bonds with their humans and love showing affection. Today we’ll talk about the many different ways that cats do this so that you know when your cat is trying to tell you that they care about you. 

Here are 8 Different Unique Ways Cats Show Affection

Headbutts and rubs

One of the most common ways cats show affection is by rubbing their heads against you or giving you a headbutt. This is called “bunting” and it’s a way of marking you as their own. When a cat rubs against you or objects such as cat posts or scratchers, they’re leaving behind their scent which makes them feel safe and secure. It’s also a sign of affection and trust. If your cat bumps his head against you, it means he likes and trusts you.

Slow blinks

When a cat slowly blinks at you, it’s called a “kitty kiss” and it’s one of the sweetest ways they can show affection. It’s often accompanied by a little meow or chirp and means your cat feels comfortable around you and enjoys your company. So if your cat slowly blinks at you, consider yourself loved!


Purring is the most obvious way cats show affection. It’s usually a sign of contentment and happiness, but it can also be a way of asking for attention or comfort. If your cat is purring while being petted, it means they’re really enjoying the moment and they feel safe and secure with you. If your cat starts purring when they see you, it means they’re happy to see you and they view you as a source of comfort. Either way, it’s always nice to be on the receiving end of a loud, hearty purr!

Tail twitches

You might not think of tail twitches as being affectionate, but for cats, it definitely is! A slight twitch of the tail can mean your kitty is happy to see you or is enjoying being petted. But if their tail starts twitching rapidly back-and-forth, it means they’re feeling threatened or anxious in some way and are getting ready to defend themselves. So if you see your cat’s tail twitching, pay attention to the rest of their body language to see what they’re trying to tell you.


Cats are fastidious groomers, and they often groom their owners as a sign of affection. When your cat licks or nibbles on you, they’re not only cleaning you but also transferring their scent to you. This is another way of claiming you as their own and showing you how much they care about you.


This is one of the best ways that cats show their affection. You’ll see this behaviour referred to as “making biscuits” It’s not exactly clear why cats knead, but it’s generally accepted that it’s a sign of contentment. Some experts believe that kneading is a leftover habit from kittenhood. When nursing, kittens knead their mother’s belly to stimulate milk flow. It makes sense that this would be a comforting action for them to carry into adulthood. Whatever the reason, if your cat is kneading you, take it as a compliment! They trust you enough to let their guard down and enjoy a good petting session. Just be sure to keep those nails trimmed so you don’t end up with scratches all over your body.

Gifting You With “Presents”

One way a cat shows their affection is by bringing you “presents” from around the house. They may carefully carry their favourite toy over to you and drop it at your feet, or they might bring you a dead mouse they caught in the yard. It may seem gross at first, but they’re actually trying to show you how much they appreciate you. This is their way of hunting for you and providing for you, just like they would for their own kitten.

Following You Around

Just like dogs, cats can bond very closely with their chosen human and may want to spend all of their time nearby. Many cat owners report that their cat will follow them from room to room, or even shadow them as they go about their day. This is something they do to a person who they trust, as cats will tend to prefer spending time alone and safe if they feel anxious or threatened. If your cat seems to be attached to you at the hip, that means they take comfort in your presence.  As you can see, there are a multitude of ways for cats to show that they appreciate you being their owner. The next time your cat rubs up against you or follows you around the house, you’ll know that they’re just trying to say “I love you!”