November 01, 2018 4 min read

People have tamed cats so that you can always have a little lion at hand who can be safely petted.

Stroking the cat incredibly benefits both the owner and the pet. When you stroke a cat, your blood pressure level decreases and stresses recede. But such a procedure, while routine at first glance, has its own subtleties that every loving owner of a cat must know.

How and Where to Stroke a Cat

The first thing you should take into consideration is to stroke the cat when the animal wants it and leave it alone when the cat is has had enough caresses. In this way, you will display respect for your pet and its desires. Many cats don’t like prolonged caresses and strokes, so they usually purr the first 2-3 minutes and then start biting and scratching sharply. There’s nothing to be done about it; cats are very selfish!

Before you begin stroking your pet actively, stretch your finger or hand to the cat's nose, and give it the opportunity to smell or touch your hand. Thus, you can clearly understand whether your cat is ready to make contact. After all, if the cat obviously ignores your actions, it means that it is absolutely not inclined to indulge in caresses. 

But if your pet begins rubbing against your hand and sniffs it, then, most likely, it is ready to be stroked. Open your palm and gently stroke the animal along the fur.

The area on the back of the head between the cat’s ears is one of those which most “gratefully” respond to gentle touches. If you are not sure what your pet loves, then you should start stroking it gently with your fingertips, without noticeable pressure. Advance from one ear to another, pause a little and gently massage the area right behind the ear. It’s quite possible that after a few seconds, the cat will “soften” and slowly start its “Harley-Davidson.”

Don’t forget about such an attractive part of the cat's muzzle, as cheeks. Some pets just go crazy when they are caressed with fingertips in the area under their eyes and whiskers. My own cat will “sell its homeland out” for such caresses.

The neck and chest of most cats are also incredibly responsive to stroking with fingers. Start with barely perceptible touches of the chin with your fingertips, slowly moving to the neck. And, if the cat likes your caresses, it will begin purring and actively pulling its neck, giving you an unimpeded opportunity to stroke both the neck and the chest.

The next thing you can do to demonstrate your love and tenderness to your fluffy pet is to pass your hand along the fur from the neck across the back, but without touching the area near the tail and, still less, the tail itself. If the cat likes what you are doing, then it will begin arching its back, rubbing its forehead against your hand, as if urging you to repeat the gentle movements again and again.

Paws and pads are very delicate and sensitive parts of the cat’s body. But some of the cats simply adore it when you stroke them along the paws from top to bottom or gently caress the pads of their favorite paws with your fingertips. You will learn very quickly if your pet likes it or not. The main thing is not to be afraid of trying to give minutes of tenderness and affection to your cat. 

Interpret Your Animal’s Behavior Correctly

If the cat is purring or mewing, this doesn’t necessarily mean that it wants to play or indulge in caresses. Sometimes, cats don’t purr with pleasure or to attract attention but because of irritability.

If the cat itself jumped into your lap, it’s quite possible that really it doesn’t want to be actively squeezed and stroked. Most likely, the fluffy pet simply wants to lie and relax on its host's lap, as people are an excellent source of heat.

But if the kitty actively rubs against some parts of your body, lies down next to you and now curls up, now stretches, or rubs its head against your palm, begs you to stroke it – in no case ignore your pet!

Even if you are very busy, take a break from your important business for a minute to stroke your cat a little. It’s possible that this is a momentary influx of tenderness and not a thirst for prolonged caresses. It's like meeting your friend and shaking hands with him as a mark of respect. Remember that cats are touchy.

Where You Shouldn’t Stroke the Cat 

Stay away from your pet’s tummy. Yes, I know from my own experience that when they lie on the back, this lovely belly attracts, but you CANNOT stroke it. Most cats don’t like it when somebody just touches their stomachs, not to mention stroking them. Those who allow you to touch their tummies are most likely set to play rough, seizing your hand with their claws and actively nibbling it.

However, you or your cat got carried away with the process, so don’t forget that your movements shouldn’t be too vigorous and rough. It isn’t worth stroking cats the wrong way.

And be moderate. Enough is enough and no more.

Love your fluffy pets, study their desires and habits, and then the affectionate and grateful “Purr-r-r” won’t be long in coming.

Kawaii Meow
Lover of Japanese culture, cats, and self-help hacks. The biggest cat online store.

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