ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

Understanding the sounds and body language of your cat

Updated on November 3, 2013

Cat language


Speaking with your cat!

You don't have to be a cat to understand them, or "speak" their language so to speak in order to understand them. With a little time, effort, and observation, you can communicate with your cat almost as easily as talking with your friends.

It's been noted that a cats brain is more like a humans than a dog. Cats are intelligent, resourceful, graceful and make fantastic domestic pets!

When you understand what your cat is telling you either by vocalization or body language, it improves bonding and makes your pet very happy!

Do you love cats?

I love cats, do you?

See results

Sounds a cat makes and what they are trying to tell you

Cats can make over 100 different sounds. But here are the most common, and what your cat is trying to tell you when it makes them.

Hissing-This noise is often heard during a threat or attack. Your cat is letting you know that it is mad and has had enough of whatever is going on. Consider this a warning before a potential attack.

Purring-When your cat purrs, it is signaling to you that it is happy and content and it's gently letting you know "hey, I'm okay, I'm here"

Meowing-Different tones of meows can mean a few different things. Some cats are naturally more vocal than others and may be meowing just simply to have a conversation with you. They may also be letting you know "hey, I'm hungry" or "I'd like to know what you are doing"

Chirping or chattering-You've probably witnessed your cat sitting at a window watching the wildlife outdoors. Your cat’s tail may begin swinging wildly from side to side and he may even crouch at the window, as if he’s going to bust through the glass and pounce on the unsuspecting animal he's spotted. It’s then that you hear that sound – the little chattering noise that comes from your cat. It's been said that cats make this chirping or chattering sound when they are on the hunt for prey. It's also been said that this noise signals a reflex in the mouth and jaw for when they latch on to what they are about to try to catch. Exercise for the muscles, if you will.

Body language


How to read your cat from reading this book!

Cat body language

A cat's eyes-

  • Narrowed pupils may indicate an aggressive threat, tension or a heightened interest in what you are doing.
  • Wide open eyes portray curiosity and listening.
  • Half closed eyes or closing when hearing your voice, your cat is saying I'm sleepy, or I love you.
  • Pupils that appear as slits are saying I'm feeling alert and confident.
  • Big bugged out eyes, means I'm scared or frightened!
  • Blinking and winking at you, means your cat is content and confident.
  • Clouded eyes may mean your cat may be feeling sick, see a vet!
  • A kitty whose eyes are staring straight at you is saying, "I'm your boss and I'm dominant." A stare is a challenge has now ensued. Do not look away.


  • Pointing forward-friendly interest and varying degrees of attentiveness.
  • Pricked up or turned slightly backward-warning..."I'm about to attack"
  • Fully erect but aimed back- "I'm a very angry kitty right now"


  • Still and raised- kitty is feeling confident and friendly.
  • Sudden whipping- Kitty is very excited and angry, and may feel a threat of attack is nearby.
  • Just a flick of the tip-kitty is slightly dissatisfied or feeling impatient
  • Hanging straight down- kitty is relaxed
  • Tail is straight out behind them- kitty is exploring and feeling cautious.


  • Contracted- Your cat is scared
  • Stretched- Your cat is confident and prepared to attack
  • Arched- Your cat is stretching or ready to defend
  • Aggression- Your cat will have erect ears, constricted pupils, and the tail will swing wildly in low arcs close to its body.
  • Crouching- Your cat is feeling defensive.


  • Erect fairly even all over their body- You're cat is ready to attack and trying to threaten its opponent.




A lot can be noticed simply by viewing the action of the whiskers. When a cat is excited, tense and ready to act, the whiskers will be pointed forward and fanned out. On a calm or comfortable cat, they point outward and are less spread apart. A cat that is hunting will thrust its whiskers forward. The shy or reserved cat will bunch the whiskers together and flatten them out to the side of the face. Whiskers flat against the face mean your cat is frightened.

Cat body language

© 2013 Rebecca


This website uses cookies

As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at:

Show Details
HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the or domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)
ClickscoThis is a data management platform studying reader behavior (Privacy Policy)