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kneading cat  on blanket

Why Cats Knead

It doesn’t take long as a cat owner to notice how much kitties get into kneading blankets and clothes. But what is it about this activity that is so absorbing to a cat?

The truth is, we are not 100% sure why cats knead. But here are some possibilities:

  • Kneading is a way for a cat to impart its scent to blankets, clothes, or other items.
  • Kneading mimics what cats did as a kittens to improve milk flow. PetMD explains, “Even though kneading a soft surface doesn’t yield milk, adult cats forever associate the motion of kneading with the rewarding comfort of nursing.”
  • It is possible that wild cats kneaded as a nesting ritual to pat down foliage.
  • It is possible kneading works to help cats warm up their muscles after sleeping or sitting in one position for a long time, kind of like a human waking up and going on a walk.
  • Finally, kneading may be a social gesture, especially if your cat is kneading directly on you.

So, those are some possible reasons why kitties knead. Regardless, if your cat kneads a lot, that is a good thing, as this may indicate that your pet feels safe, contented, and affectionate toward you.

If you think your cat may knead to stretch and warm up muscles, you might be interested in giving your pet some other ways to work out, like a kitty yoga mat, perfect for napping, scratching, or playing.


cat on red yoga mat

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Get this Cat Yoga Mat

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