Understanding Cat Whispers

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Cats do not talk, but they use their entire body to let people and other animals know what they are thinking. From the tips of their ears to their tails, almost every movement of a cat can be interpreted as a message. Cat whispers are one of the most important ways a cat communicates with you. With 32 muscles in their velvety soft ears, cats have an amazing ability to move their ears. They can move each ear independently and use specific ear positions to express their thoughts and feelings.

With careful observation, one can learn a great deal about cats from the position of their ears. Here are some basic ways to understand cat whispers


Ears are facing forward.

A cat’s ears naturally stand up. Ears facing forward means that your feline is in a good mood. Cats often show off their “happy ears” when they are playing or following you around. If you haven’t already given your cat some affection, now is the perfect time to lean over and pet it or throw catnip at it.

Ears pointing in one direction

As mentioned earlier, cats have the cool ability to move one ear at a time. They can turn their ears in different directions in order to hear the sounds around them. If a cat’s ears point straight up and to the left or right, that is an indication that the cat is listening closely.

Cats have much better hearing than humans. They may be paying attention to something you cannot hear. If you are wondering what it is, look in the direction the cat’s ears are pointing.

Ear twitching

Ear twitching or flicking is an important part of cat whispering. In most cases, this indicates that the cat is a bit nervous. It may be excited by a pesky dog or alarmed by a new noise coming from the kitchen. Some cats wiggle their ears when they are particularly irritated or upset. To know more about what is going on, you need to read your cat’s other body language signals.

Ears like airplanes.

When a cat’s ears are flattened and turned to the side, they look like airplane wings sticking out of its head. This ear language indicates tension or anxiety.

Airplane ears usually indicate that something unpleasant is going on. Perhaps the cat’s nails are being clipped or a new pet is being brought in. This condition should be watched carefully to ensure that it does not escalate.

Ears are flattened back.

If the cat’s ears remain flat against its head and are pinned back, be careful. This is different from airplane ears, where the ear canals are not visible. This is an indication that the cat is feeling fear, self-defense, anger, aggression, or all four at the same time. This is basically the cat telling those around it to stay away and leave it alone. This is a threat, and if the message is not heard or respected, it can turn into an attack.

Generally, the flatter the cat’s ears are, the more scared it is. Since most aggressive behavior in cats comes from fear, this is also a sign that the cat will immediately swing at you or launch an all-out attack. When this happens, you should pay attention to the cat’s other body language. Raised feathers, stiff body posture, or tail wagging can mean that the situation desperately needs to be alleviated before someone gets hurt.

Understanding cat whispers can help us learn more about what our cats are thinking and feeling. Improved communication will lead to a stronger bond. So, whatever your cat’s ears are trying to tell you, you can show that you are ready to listen.

by Amber King

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