Cat Behavior Explained: What Your Cat Is Trying to Tell You Unfortunately, cats can't speak human languages. But this doesn't mean that they don't say a lot in their own special way. So here's a list of common cat behavior explained in simple terms... Matthew Loffhagen Sitting on Your LaptopImage By: Flickr/Camille GévaudanIf your cat is sitting on your laptop, it could be because it's too cold in your house. Cats' ideal body temperature is higher than that of humans, so don't blame your kitty if it's seeking out the warmest place available to get a bit more comfortable. Exposing Their BellyImage By: Flickr/Lisa ZinsMost people assume that if a cat shows you its belly, that means it wants to be scratched. That may be what dogs want, but it's the opposite of what cats want. When a cat makes itself vulnerable by exposing its tummy, it's showing you it trusts you not to touch its belly. So it's a direct breach of that trust to do so, which is why you'll probably end up getting scratched. Rolling AroundImage By: Flickr/A.Davey Contrary to popular belief, cats aren't loners. They just show affection in different ways than humans do. If a cat is looking at you and rolling around, they're probably trying to get some attention. This is a good time to stroke or play with them to make them happy. Sudden TalkativenessImage By: Flickr/David SutterlüttiAll cats meow, and some are noisier than others. But if your cat suddenly starts talking more than normal, it means something is wrong. It often means that the cat is scared, anxious or (very commonly) feels sick in some way. Missing the Litter TrayImage By: Twitter/@LazerDon't blame your kitty if they suddenly stop using the litter tray. It's probably not a behavioral issue. Commonly ignoring the litter tray could mean that your can has a urinary tract infection, and they simply don't have time to get to the tray when nature calls. Staying at a DistanceImage By: Flickr/daisuke1230 Why is your cat randomly ignoring you or hiding further away than normal? It's often because they're scared. Anything from new clothes to the presence of a stranger can spook a cat, so it's important to let them have their space and allow them to discover for themselves that whatever's upset them isn't really a big deal. Not EatingImage By: Flickr/R. Crap MarinerCat appetites can obviously vary due to a number of factors. But if your cat suddenly stops eating for as little as 24 hours, it could be a sign that they're seriously sick. Don't wait - take them to the vet to see what could be the matter. Sudden Extra EnergyImage By: Flickr/Tambako the JaguarIt's completely normal for older cats to slow down and get tired more easily. What's more worrying is when they suddenly gain extra speed and energy. This could be a symptom of hyperthyroidism, so it's worth getting them checked out. Excessive HidingImage By: Flickr/Lori B All cats love to hide, so hiding in and of itself isn't a warning that anything's wrong. But if your cat refuses to come out of hiding, it could mean that they're in pain, and are curling up in a quiet corner to try to feel safe. DroolingImage By: Flickr/Joseph SARDINKittens are going to drool from time to time, but in adult cats, this is another health warning sign. It could be the result of something relatively benign like a toothache, but it could also easily be caused by kidney failure or cancer. Either way, it's worth getting your cat checked out by a vet. Rubbing Against EverythingImage By: Flickr/miss pupikIf a cat is rubbing their face against things, they're saying, "This is mine." Smell is very important to cats, and they like to leave their scent on their environment to help mark out their territory. At least this method of scent marking is cleaner that that used by dogs. Wagging TailImage By: Flickr/A.Davey Dogs wag their tails when they're happy, but in cats, this is a warning sign. A tail quickly flicking from side to side is an indicator that something is very wrong, and that your cat is stressed, anxious, or sick. Tail TwitchingImage By: Flickr/Lil ShepherdIf, on the other hand, your cat's tail is simply twitching a little, particularly at the tip, there's no need for alarm. This simply means that your cat is focusing very intently on something nearby. RestlessnessImage By: Flickr/MissieIf your cat keeps getting up and moving around, if they're making more noise than normal, and if they're trying to get extra attention and physical contact from you, it could be that they're simply in heat. This frustration manifests in a lot of different ways, which is completely understandable. Increase in UrinationImage By: Flickr/allison If your cat is peeing a lot more frequently, and the volume of cat pee in your home has increased dramatically, it could be a sign that they've got a urinary infection. Keep an eye on this behavior and consider a trip to the vet. Lots More Litter Tray TripsImage By: Flickr/Henry BurrowsIf, on the other hand, your cat is peeing more frequently but is only letting out a little pee each time, it could be a sign of bladder stones, which can be a far bigger problem to fix. So, yes, sadly, you really need to be paying very close attention to your cat's bathroom schedule. Increased BeggingImage By: Flickr/ChrisCats are going to beg, obviously, because it's a good way to get what they want. But if your cat suddenly starts begging significantly more than usual, it could be a sign that something is wrong. It could be caused by parasites, or be a symptom of an illness like diabetes or cancer. Too Much GroomingImage By: Flickr/Fawzi Jasser There is such a thing as being too clean. Cats can develop obsessive compulsive disorders similar to humans, and one, known as psychogenic alopecia, essentially involves rubbing themselves bald. This is a very dangerous mental condition, and likely the symptom of another problem, so you should definitely get your cat looked at by the vet if you spot this behavior. YowlingImage By: Flickr/llee_wuIf your cat's meows change so that they're long, drawn out, and louder than usual, it could be a sign that they're in heat. This isn't a problem, but there are other noises a cat can make that communicate bigger, more urgent issues. HowlingImage By: Flickr/FlickrawIf your cat is making pained, angry howling noises, it's time to take them to the vet. Cats only make this noise when something is very wrong, so you need to give them immediate attention. Tail Up With a Pointed TipImage By: Flickr/Tambako the Jaguar If you see a cat strutting towards you with their tail up and the tip pointing to one side, they're basically saying hello. This cat is feeling friendly and sociable, and would probably like to be stroked. Rubbing Your LegImage By: Flickr/Dotan DimetIf your cat rubs itself up against you when you first get into the house of an evening, it's probably because you smell weird. You've been out and about all day picking up new smells and scents, and your cat is basically trying to fix you by marking you as part of their family. The Slow BlinkImage By: Flickr/Jennifer CIf a cat looks you straight in the eye and then slowly blinks (then possibly turns their head to the side), they are telling you that they love you. The slow blink is one of the highest honors a cat can bestow upon a loved one. Flat EarsImage By: Flickr/Melinda’s Mission Cat's ears go down when they're frightened. Part of this is because they're trying to make themselves appear smaller, helping them to hide. If you see your cat's ears drop down suddenly, it's worth checking to make sure they're okay. Licking LipsImage By: Flickr/neverending septemberCats lick their lips when they're eating and that's fine. But if you spot your cat licking their lips when they're not eating, it could be a sign of feeling nauseous or stressed. Keep an eye for this warning sign, especially if you'd like to avoid having to clean cat vomit off the carpet.