Why Do Cats Knead?

Why Do Cats Knead?

Why Do Cats Knead?

Why Do Cats Knead?

 You probably already saw your cat or kitten kneading. After all, this is a very common behavior in domestic cats. In case you don't know what kneading is, it is simply the movement of your cat's front paws where he pushes them in and out, alternating between left and right.

You may have already seen your cat doing this movement on many different surfaces. From blankets to pillows, on you, and even on other animals.

It's important to notice that not all cats knead. However, most of them do it and they may adopt this behavior for a wide range of reasons. Besides, if you have two cats at home that knead, they may do it in a different way. The truth is that while most cats only tend to use their front paws to knead, others use the four paws, some show their claws and others never show them.


Why Do Cats Knead?

While it's not perfectly clear why cats and kittens knead, some hypotheses may justify this behavior.


#1: Cats Kneading Soft Objects Like Blankets:

According to veterinarians and specialists, when your cat loves to knead soft objects, this may be an instinctive behavior that comes from the time where he was just a kitten.

Nursing kittens tend to develop this behavior naturally so they can stimulate their mother's milk production and get more milk. While your cat may be an adult already, he may be doing it simply because this delivers him the comfort of nursing. This Doughnut Bed may be perfect for your cat.

As we already mentioned above, it's not unusual to see cats kneading blankets, pillows or even stuffed animals that you have around the house.


#2: Cats Kneading Their Owners:

When you have your cat on your lap, you may notice that occasionally he starts kneading on you. This is simply your cat telling you that he loves you and returning his affection and love.

One of the things that you should keep in mind is that the happier your cat is, the harder and deeper he will dig. So, while your cat doesn't even realize it, he may actually be hurting you. However, it's important to keep in mind that he is only showing his affection and you shouldn't punish him. Instead, if your cat has the habit of laying on your lap and knead, you may simply use a pillow in between.


#3: Cats Knead To Mark Their Territory:

You know how cats can be territorial. And kneading may simply be their way to mark their territory. Ultimately, when they knead, they activate the scent glands that they have in their paw pads.


#4: Cats Knead To Stretch Their Muscles:

If you notice, as soon as your cat wakes up, he tends to stretch out. Even between naps throughout the day, he stretches and goes back to sleep. So, for many cats, kneading is just a different way to stretch their muscles.

Check out this Tunnel bed and tent so your cat can exercise more.


#5: Female Cats Knead For Their Mates:

When female cats are ready for their mates, they tend to knead the air while lying on the male cat side. This tells the male cat that she is ready and open to an approach.