Wednesday 13 October 2021

The Language of Cats' Eyes

Communicating with your eyes is not just for humans. Cats too use their eyes to show their feelings but there are some differences between cat and human language which you must be aware of if you want to "talk" to your cat.

We might like to stare adoringly into a lover's eyes but for a cat, prolonged eye contact is threatening. If he fixes you with a stare - it's not a loving look but means, at its least, that he doesn't trust you and, at its worst, that he's threatening you. Rival cats will try to out-stare each other.

That's why in a room full of people, the cat will often head straight for the person who doesn't like cats. It's because people who like cats will be looking at him while those who don't will be looking away, hoping he will leave them alone. So, ironically, the cat lovers are perceived as being threatening, while the cat haters look like they pose no threat.

You can "kiss" your cat by looking him in the eye and then slowly blinking. You are, in effect, telling your cat: "I'm no threat to you. I love you." The first time you do this, he might not respond but soon he'll blink at you in return. 

The first time this happened to me, I felt a real sense of connection, like I was really "talking" to my cat because in the feline world closing the eyes when with another animal is the ultimate sign of trust.

If you want to see what your cat is thinking when there are visitors in your house, take a close look at his eyes. The more frightened he is, the wider his pupils will expand. If he is angry, the pupils may become narrowed.

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  1. Oh, interesting. Although, I tend not to look for the cat, and the cat avoids me anyway.

  2. My Phoebe used to give me the slow blinks, "love eyes" we called them. I miss them.

  3. I always wondered why cats made a beeline for Matt who doesn't like them and ignored me. I will remember that in future.

  4. Now that makes sense! My ex loves animals but he is very allergic to cats...sure enough the cat would come over to him, jump on him with the tail right under his nose. My ex would pet the pussy cat but would start a sneezing fit soon after. the stare down..I have seen that between our 2 cats(of 3). What is weird, the one cat will lick the other first in sweetness and the other cat will bow its head happy to receive the licks but then comes the stare. It usually comes from the cat showing the initial affection.

  5. We share lots of blinks in our house, I'm happy to report. However, Jezebel often stares us down for food, usually when I'm trying to relax with my husband for something he's bookmarked on Youtube. Tilly occasionally joins her until we check the kibble bowl or pull out the canned food. lol

  6. I wish I could speak cat ... I'm learning though!

  7. My Phoebe used to give the best "love eyes" with her slow blinks. XO

  8. Yes indeed, the kitty eyes always tell the story!

  9. Hee Hee! Mom says she can ALWAYS tell when I am going to do something crazt pants by looking at my eyes! Have a marvellously Happy week! Marv


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