How To Tell If Your Cat Loves You

Some cats like to play hard to get, but they really do like you (as a friend).

Cats are somewhat famous for being standoffish. It’s a stereotype they’ve been battling against since they were domesticated. Some may call them aloof, or say that they only give affection when they want to be fed. But cat lovers know differently, because they know their cats show tenderness in a variety of ways. Here a just a few of the signs to look for when you’re not sure of a cat’s affinity toward you.

Bath Time…For You

A mommy cat shows her kittens how loved they are by grooming them. Even adult cats who are fond of each other will take turns grooming their kitty friends and siblings. If your cat enjoys grooming you, take it as a token of affection (and not as a subtle hint that you need a bath). It’s more like she’s telling you that she trusts and feels a deep connection with you.

Head Boops and Cheek Rubbing

Boop—I love you! A head boop—or hear bunting, as it’s generally referred to—occurs when a cat gently presses his forehead against your body, hand, or face. Not only will cats do it to other kitties to show affection, it’s also one of the ways that your cat will let you know that you’re special to her.

Another definite sign that your cat has the feels for you is cheek rubbing. This serves two purposes: to tell you that you’re her favorite human, and that she’s leaving her scent on you, which means you belong to her now. So back off, other cats!

Let’s Spend Some Time Together

He’s forever following you around, sitting on your lap or just spending time near you, the message should be loud and clear—this kitty adores his human.

Belly Rubs

If you’ve been granted petting access to the usually off-limits tummy area, you’ve made it onto your cat’s VIP list. She’s so comfortable with you, she’ll lie down on her back with belly exposed. You cat knows that you won’t hurt her, and by letting you rub this vulnerable area of her body means you’ve made the cut into her “Totally Trusted” human zone.

Love Bites

While this may not be your preferred term of endearment, little kitty love bites typically aren’t painful because they’re gentle in nature. Cats nip one another as a sign of affection; if your cat nibbles on you, he considers you to be one of the kitty gang.

Soft Looks

Always on alert, cats are on the lookout for people or things they don’t feel comfortable around. But since your cat knows and trusts you, he’ll relax his gaze and feel comfortable maintaining eye contact with you. It’s the cat’s version of blowing you a kiss—watch for his eyes to soften and a slow blink. Return the love by slowly blinking in return.

Tail Wagging

The dogs aren’t alone in this term of endearment—cats also communicate with their tails. When she really cares about you, she’ll hold her tail high and twitch the tip as she approaches you. Another tell-tail sign of affection is if your cat rests her tail on you while sitting or lying down with you, as well as wrapping her tails around your arm.

Now that you know what cats do to show their affection toward humans, spread the word. Cats are full of love for people—humans just have to learn how to read the feline friendly signals.

Meet the Author: Amy Tokic

Amy Tokic is the Editor of, the flagship site to over 70 different pet communities, which offers pet parents a one-stop-info-shop for all things dog and cat related. Amy's been with PetGuide since the beginning, guided by the wisdom of her Shih Tzu mix and furry roommate, Oscar. Together, this pet power couple has their paw on the pulse of the pet industry, sniffing out trends, advice, news, tasty treat recipes and other tail-wagging stories.

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