How to Talk To Your Cat
4 June, 2012

I am a stern believer that cats, like dogs, understand what we say to them.  I know that my cat,
Sammy, understands the basics and can tell from my tone whether something is OK or if he is being a bad boy.   There are so many nuances of cat communication but I thought I would give you a general overview and include a great, hilarious video of how to talk to our feline friends.

Cat language is a mix of facial expression, tail position and other forms of body language in addition to sound. Cats learn to make demands of us by observing which of their sounds cause which human responses.  They are smarter than you think!

Body Language:

The tail:  The tail indicates whether your cat is happy, excited or scared.  The tail going back and forth usually indicates a happy cat, while the trail straight up means that he or she is in predatory, aggressive mode; the tail tucked under means that your feline friend is scared.

The eyes: If your cat’s eyes are dilated, he or she is usually excited and/or playful.  The slow blinking eyes are a sign of affection.

Understanding Your Cat

Some cats are vocal and have extensive vocabularies, while other cats rarely speak at all.  Whether your cat is vocal or not, he or she will use his or her body to communicate with you.  Sometimes you will even need to ‘get down’ to their level to communicate with your cat.

Take a look at this great and helpful video on talking to your cat:

How to ‘talk’ to your at cat

As you talk to your cat, the words you use are less important than your tone and body language. If you say “”No” in the same tone you use for “Good cat,” you will confuse your cat and he or she will misinterpret what you’re saying.

If you are trying to correct your cat’s bad behavior, use a loud, firm, authoritative voice, and use this same tone consistently in conjunction with your body language. For example, when ordering your cat “down,” make a stern face, and use one of your hands to point down.

For praise, or when calling your cat to dinner or offering treats, use a higher-pitched voice, smile, and make a gesture with your hand.

If your cat is begging for attention or crying for food when you are trying to accomplish some other task, you will need to say “NO!” firmly, and gently push your cat away without showing him or her your affection. Cats will repeatedly try to invade our personal space and it might take a few times before your cat really catches on and leaves you alone.

Therefore, if you consistently use the same voice, facial expressions and hand gestures, most cats will have no trouble understanding what you say. The more you communicate with your cat, the better the two of you will become at understanding each other.

Come and join, Sammy, the site administrator for, and he will be your first friend!

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