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Why Do Cats Swish Their Tails

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Heres What Your Cats Tail Is Trying To Tell You

Why Do Cats Wag Their Tails?

Experts talk cat behaviorfrom tail tells, to stealing, to the speedy exits known as zoomies.

Cat owners are keenly tuned in to their pets body language, but once in a while the felines will throw a curve. Sometimes its in their tails.

While watching our cat snooze, we noticed his tail was tapping away like he was enjoying a disco medley we couldnt hear, sending quite a mixed signal.

So how do you decode a cats tail?

They May Be Falling Ill Or In Pain

Tail position: Tail movement: Body language:

Sometimes, a cats tail wagging while theyre resting or sleeping can mean that theyre sick or in pain. This behaviour looks similar to when a cat feels relaxed, so youll need to look out for other signals as well to differentiate between them.

You can take a look at her recent habits. Check if shes been skipping out on her food, spending more time hiding or breathing loudly while sleeping or awake. You can also bring her to a vet for an accurate diagnosis.

Why Do Cats Wag Their Tails When Being Pet

A cat that is lying down may wag its tail while being petted. Your cat is sending you a message about how it feels, so consider where you are petting your cat.

As explained by Anthrozoös, cats respond to petting on different body parts, so your cat could go from purring to hissing if you get it wrong. However, if your cat lifts its rear and swishes its tail gently, its feeling happy.

If tail wagging speeds up, you should proceed with caution. This is a sign that your cat is growing frustrated. Note that purring can also occur when a cat is feeling agitated or sore. There is a time limit on how long cats find petting enjoyable, and your cat may bite or scratch if you stroke it for too long.

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Cat Tail Wagging Vs Dog Tail Wagging: What Is The Difference

The tail movement of a cat and a dog has huge differences. A dog’s tail movement is arguably not as diverse as a cat’s. When a dog wags its tail, it is much easier to understand than when a cat wags its tail, and there is hardly any similarity between the two. There are a number of instances where the same kind of movement exhibited by these two animals means two different things.

When a dog has its tail straight up, it is usually a signal of high arousal and increased chances of aggressive behavior. Whereas, on the other hand, a cat exhibiting this same movement means that it is friendly and relaxed. Ironically, the higher the tail position, the greater is the confidence level of your cat. Now if you see your dog wagging its tail back and forth casually, it indicates that your canine friend is in a good mood, while a cat showing a similar tail movement means that it might be getting ready to pounce upon its target. These are some of the most common differences one can spot between the tail movement of a cat and a dog.

Here at Kidadl, we have carefully created lots of interesting family-friendly facts for everyone to enjoy! If you liked our suggestions for why do cats wag their tailsthen why not take a look at why cats arch their back or Abyssinian cat facts?

Kidadl Team


Cats Wag Their Tails When Theyre Feeling Scared

Why Do Cats Thump Their Tails When Lying Down?

Another reason why your cat may be wagging their tail is when theyre feeling scared. This type of tail wag is different from the prior one of confidence. When your cat is frightened, their tail will wag in a low position. The degree of fright can be determined by looking at the exact position of the tail. If its tucked between their legs, this means your cat is extremely scared and you shouldnt approach your pet. Your cat wont be combative but may be too scared to move.

If your kittens tail is straight up in the air and their back is arched with ears pushed back, your cat is scared but wont hesitate to fight. This is when you should keep your distance from your pet and give them time to calm down.

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Cats Wag Their Tails When Theyre Annoyed

If your cat is wagging their tail back and forth continually while lying down or flicking it with little bursts of energy, its likely that they are expressing their annoyance. Maybe they dont want to be bothered at the moment, or perhaps their territory is being invaded by pushy humans. No matter what their annoyance level is, if you see this tail movement, youre best to move away and leave your cat alone for a while. At least until they are feeling more sociable.

Why Does My Cat Wag Her Tail While Purring Know These Reasons First

It is a common knowledge that dogs wag their tails when theyre happy, but many people are unaware that cats do as well. Do cats wag their tails? you might wonder.

Yes, they wag their tails in the same way that dogs do, but these rambunctious felines do so for totally different reasons. When cats are feeling a certain way, they move their tails in various ways, from subtle shimmies to full wags.

So, what does it mean when a cat wags its tail?

Cats wag their tail while purring because they want to indicate that they are having fun with something. When cats are irritated or annoyed, they always wag their tails, but this is not always the case.

High praise comes in the form of purring and twitching of the tail. Shes telling you that she needs you to keep going.

Cat tail language is very advanced, and it can be a good indicator of your cats mood. You can normally tell how your cat is feeling by paying attention to the direction and speed of their wagging tail, as well as the rest of their body.

Check out our list of potential reasons why your cat is wagging its tail.

  • Final Words
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    Ways That Cats Talk To Us With Their Tails

    I wish I had a tail. Dont you think it would be absolutely wonderful to be able to swish it from side to side, point it up in the air, tuck it between your legs or even wrap it round your best friend and cuddle up! I wish I could make rude gestures with it, actually! A cat has the most amazing tail. Flexible and mobile, its a very important part of its anatomy. I mean, can you imagine a cat without one? Wouldnt be a cat, would it? But you never see a motionless tail so why do cats tails twitch? Lets find out!

    Why Do Cats Move Their Tails When Sleeping

    Why Do Dogs And Cats Chase Their Tails?

    The cat is informing you that it knows you are nearby. This could mean that it sees you as a threat, or it could be a sign of trust. It ultimately depends on how well you are bonded with the cat.

    A cat nap differs from sleep. Cats doze lightly throughout the day, but they remain aware of their surroundings. The amount of tail movement helps you to understand your cats state of mind at that time.

    A quick flick of the tale is a sign of irritation. The cat knows you are there and is annoyed that you are interrupting its nap.

    A slow, lazy wag, especially with the tail erect, is an acknowledgment. Your cat is permitting you to remain in the room while it sleeps. This tail-flick means that your cat feels safe with you nearby.

    Your cat may be dreaming, according to Trends in Neuroscience. It is believed that cats relive experiences of the day while sleeping. Your cat may be reliving a successful hunt, a petting session, or a meal it enjoyed.

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    Why Do Cats Wag Their Tails

    Why do cats wag their tails? You might be surprised to learn that tail wagging is very different for cats than for dogs. Cats may flick their tails while walking, thump their tails while lying down or hold their tails up high when they see youcats have a unique body language all their own. But if you do a little research and pay close attention to your cat, you can soon learn exactly what your cat is trying to say each time he wags his tail.

    Waving Tail While Lying Down

    Dr. Ernie Ward also suggests that sometimes cat tail wagging may indicate that theyre in pain or feeling unwell. If your cats lying down and waving their tail whilst also behaving out of sorts such as going off their food or spending a lot of time in hiding they may be feeling under the weather. If youre concerned about your cats health, take them to the vet as soon as possible for a diagnosis.

    Now you know all the reasons why cats wag their tails! Dont forget to pay attention to your cats tail language the next time you go in for a cuddle itll help to avoid surprise whacks or nips!

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    What Does A Tail In A Question Mark Or Hook Shape Mean

    You may notice that sometimes your cats tail looks like a question markit stands upright and curls at the end. This cat tail language indicates that your cat is happy and approaching amicably.

    Seeing your cats tail in this position is an invitation to interact with your cat. However, while it is tempting to pet that curly-tipped tail, most cats prefer to be pet around their facial glands on their cheeks, under their chin, and next to their ears.

    Understanding Your Cats Tail Wagging

    7 Causes Why Do Cats Chase Their Tail â Animalfn

    Tail wagging is quite normal for cats, but its meaning may not be as straightforward as you think. Its important to look out for the way the tail wags in order to fully understand it.

    We hope our article has helped you to comprehend this adorable phenomenon a bit better, so you can build a stronger relationship with your fur baby!

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    Your Cat Wags Their Tail When Happy

    If you notice your cats tail go upright as soon as you talk to them make sure to pay attention to the tip of their tail. If the tails tip is moving, then chances are theyre very excited to see you or with the attention youve given them. According to Carlo Siracusa, of the University of Pennsylvania School of Veterinary Medicine, on a calm cat a straight-up tail with a hooked tip is a friendly greeting. Often times, cats will vibrate their tail to really let us know that theyre happy.

    This tail position is a clear indication of a confident kitty that wants to engage with you or another cat if you own more than one. This receptive stance can quickly turn into a playful attitude. Your kitty might be also hoping for some petting or some treats. My cats usually accompany this tail position and motion with some excited and loud meowing.

    So, if you see your kitty wagging their straight tail up in the air make sure to give them some love and cuddly affection.

    They Feel Safe Around You

    Tail position: Tail movement: Body language:

    Cats are alert by nature, so if theyre lounging or asleep beside you, it shows that theyre relaxed and comfortable. The tips of the tail will also gently wave when you communicate with them.

    As a bonus, they may also lie on their back and show you their belly. This is a huge indicator that they trust you as an owner!

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    Why Do Cats Wag Their Tails When You Talk To Them

    Why Do Cats Flick Their Tails When You Talk To Them Cat Tail Language. Cats swish and flick their tails when theyre excited, scared, agitated, or feeling playful. Basically, cats twitch their tails for several reasons and its up to us the owners to understand their body language to see what theyre trying to tell you

    Cats May Display A Puffy Tail When Threatened

    How To Read Your Cat’s Tail Movement –

    When a cat feels threatened or is unexpectedly startled, he will puff up his tail until it’s twice its normal width or even larger. He may also puff up the rest of his fur in an attempt to make himself look bigger and more threatening. Often, he’ll do this when he sees a strange cat and is getting ready for a fight. But he also might do this when he hears a sound that startles him, and he’s not sure what’s happening.

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    How Do Cats Wag Their Tails

    Cats generally wag and twitch their tails to express and convey their mood or to deliver a message and to communicate. The six different moods or conditions they express by wagging their tails include feeling confident, excited, afraid, annoyed or secure or when they are hunting. These are multiple potential meanings of a cat’s tail movement. You must be wondering: it’s just one tail, how can it express six different moods?

    Well, the position and movement of the tail are different in all conditions that is how cat owners understand this unique tail language of their feline friends. Now, before we move into what tail movement gestures which mood, let’s find out how cats wag their tails. Interestingly, cats are quite different from dogs in controlling their tails they usually keep flicking their tails while they walk, or at times, keep them held up. When cats come to a rest, they thump their tails on the ground. People have at times also noticed a domestic cat wagging its tail even while it is sleeping.

    Why Does A Cat Wag The Tip Of Its Tail

    Twitching at the tip of a cats tail denotes happiness or excitement. It begins with the tail itself. As Behavioral Processes explains, cats that keep their tail erect feel confident and assured.

    Twitching at the tip of the tail from a lying down cat suggests that it is:

    • Observing prey through a window
    • Enjoying getting attention
    • Waiting for you to get home

    Twitching at the tip of a tail can also denote frustration, but other behaviors will accompany this action. Your cat is unlikely to lie down if its in this state of mind. If your cat does not hiss, it is unlikely to be frustrated.

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    What Can We Tell About A Cat’s Behavior From His Fur

    When alarmed or startled, a cat’s fur will stand up all over its body. When feeling threatened , the fur stands up only in a narrow band along the spine and on the tail. The hair will incline slightly toward the middle from both sides, and will form a sharp ridge. This will make the cat appear larger than he is to any nearby enemies.

    Cat Swishing Tail When Lying Down What Theyre Telling You

    Why Does My Cat Slap Me With His Tail? Is He Trying To Play?

    A cats body language can move many things and one of the easiest signals to miss is your cat trying to tell you they are in pain or arent feeling good.

    If you spot your cat waving their tail while they are laying down, it could be a sign of pain. If you have a pet insurance plan for your pet, you may want to contact your veterinarian.

    They will be able to check your kitty to make sure that they are feeling fine and catch anything before it becomes worse.

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    A Sign Of Being Afraid

    Some cats wag their tails back and forth when theyre afraid of something. A cat thats feeling afraid may wag its tail close to the ground or it might even hide the tail under its body. This is a clear sign that the cat doesnt want to interact with anyone or anything nor engage in any type of fight.

    On the other end of the spectrum, a cat that is afraid but willing to fight may hold its tail up straight while arching its back. The tail may fluff up to appear bigger and wag back and forth to warn an approaching threat to stand back.

    Why Does A Cat Swish Its Tail

    Why Does A Cat Swish Its Tail? Unlike dogs, cats often wag their tails when they are angry or upset, but its not always the case. By paying attention to the direction and speed of your cats wagging tail, as well as the rest of their body, you can usually get a good grasp as to how theyre feeling.

    A flicking or lashing tail signals that the cat is agitated, while a slowly waving tail indicates the cat is focused on something.The tail-up posture tail straight up with a slight curve at the end is a signal that the cat is approaching amicably, Ballantyne continues. While learning cat tail language is a must for cat owners, actually petting the cat around the area of the tail is not appreciated by most cats, Ballantyne says. The table guide to cat tail language If a cats tail is it means he or she is Upright Content Up at a 45-degree angle Unsure Angled back, moving back and forth Good excited or Fearful excited Upright, moving back and forth slightly Happy Upright, tip bent Friendly Straight, almost level with the spine Uneasy not necessarily afraid Hanging down, with a dip near the base Aggressive Quickly swishing back and forth Angry Puffed Frightened Down at a 90-degree angle Attack mode Tucked between the legs Scared, possibly experiencing pain Sitting upright, tail tip is moving Alert, interested. Tell us: Did we miss any cat tail signals? How does your cat talk to you in cat tail language?

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