Have you ever wished that you could understand your cat better? As a cat owner, you know just how difficult it can be to get to cuddle with you sometimes. Scratching your cat can go two ways – you either get a satisfied, adoring cat, or you end up being the one scratched!
In this article, we’ll take you through the best places to scratch your cat and where to avoid. Keep in mind, that your cat’s preference can differ – what one cat enjoys or tolerate might be different for another. I would also recommend you to read some of the best cat scratching post here.
Perfect Places to Scratch A Cat
Scratches Behind Their Ears
If you have a pet or scratched a cat before, you may have noticed how many of them love to be scratched right behind the ears. Oftentimes, they even lean into your hand with a satisfying purr. However, if your cat does not purr when you pet them, this does not mean that they are not enjoying themselves. Not all cats purr. When your cat bumps into your hand like this, it is called “bunting”. This means that your cat is marking you as theirs.
Scratches by the Base of Their Tails
This can definitely fall into the category of “not all cats like this”. However, some cats enjoy being rubbed or pet by their tails. This is basically the area where your cat’s tail meets their back. Take your hand and gently run it up and down your cat’s back, paying extra attention to that spot.
Scratches Underneath Their Chins
Focus on the underside of your cat’s chin. Gently pet and scratch them, running your hand up to that spot where their jaw connects with their skull. Your cat will love this! When you do this, you may be able to get some contented purrs out of them.
Scratches by Their Necks and Shoulders
Just like we sometimes crave a nice massage, some cats enjoy a soothing one as well. Gently kneed a hand or two into your cat’s shoulders. Don’t rub too hard, or your cat might get angry. This can even be combined with some scratches behind their ears as well.
Scratches Right on Their Cheeks, Behind Their Whiskers
This is a spot that should be pet exactly right. Otherwise, your cat may run off and ignore you for a while. With careful, gentle, fingers, caress your cat right on their face focusing on that spot behind their whiskers. It’s important that you avoid rubbing too hard, especially since you do not want to accidentally hurt your cat.
Whether you have a kitten or a senior cat, this resource helps you quickly identify potential problems, take proper steps in emergency situations, better understand diagnoses and treatment options, and communicate more effectively with your veterinarian.
Some Cats Don’t Like Scratches At All
It’s important to remember that every cat is different, and yours may not be one that enjoys being scratched. There are some cats that prefer you to keep your hands to yourself, while they find other ways to have their spots scratched.
If your cat is one that allows scratches and you focus on these special spots, you are guaranteed to have a returning recipient.
Places to Avoid Scratching on Your Cat
While there are specific places on your cat that you can scratch without repercussions, there are also some places that you definitely should avoid. Attempting to scratch your cat in the wrong spot can result in a hostile cat. It can definitely help to know which specific spots to avoid.
Avoid touching Your Cat’s Tail
Most cats do not like their tails being touched. Although the cat’s tail may seem like an ideal place to grab on to especially to children, do warn them to stay away from the cat’s tail. Furthermore, a cat’s tail can also be used as an accurate measurement of how irritated your cat is getting with your petting. If its tail starts moving too much, it’s probably a good idea to leave it alone.
Avoid Trying to Rub Your Cat’s Belly
Contrary to your pet dog who may thoroughly enjoy belly rubs, a cat’s belly is not something to be messed with. A cat’s midsection is a very vulnerable section of their bodies, and they may be aware of this fact. Trying to rub or scratch your cat’s sensitive belly may result in your hand being grabbed at, bit, or scratched. However, this is just your cat attempting to protect themselves.
Avoid Rubbing Your Cat’s Paws
A cat’s paws are off-limits as well. Why? Because grabbing or petting at your cat’s paws or feet may make them feel like they are trapped. The paws are one of the most sensitive places on any cat’s body, so avoid them at all costs.
When Not to Scratch or Pet Your Cat
In addition to places that you should avoid touching on your cat, there are just some situations where should trying to pet your cat at all.
While Your Cat is Eating or Drinking
Do not pet them while they are enjoying a meal or drinking their water. This is a common universal rule with your pet dog as well. However, with cats, avoid it at all costs. While your cat is eating, they should be left alone to focus on their food. Sometimes, getting your cat to let you pet them is a feat in itself, so petting them while their eating is definitely off-limits.
To Calm the Cat Down
Do not pet your cat as a way to placate them after they’ve made a mess or after they have done something that they were not supposed to do. Doing this might establish positive reinforcement in these cases, which is something that you want to avoid doing so that you do not confuse your cat. Furthermore, if your cat is agitated, it might be best to leave them alone.
When Your Cat Clearly Does Not Want to be Pet
Do not force your affection on your cat. As cat lovers, it’s obvious that you might want to shower your furball with as much love as possible. However, sometimes, your cat is just not in the mood to be pet. Leave your cat alone at any sign of hissing or fidgeting because these are clear signs of irritation.
Showing your cat some love may be a favourite pastime for any cat lover. By petting your cat in the right spot, you can establish trust between you and your cat. By following these do’s and don’ts when it comes to your cat, you are one step closer to cracking the mystery of these cool cats.
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