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Feline Communication - What is your cat saying?

(43 Posts)
Divebar Wed 16-Dec-20 08:43:54

So we have had a rescue cat for about a month now - she’s coming up to 6 months old. This is the first time I have had a cat and I’m not entirely sure about everything. She’s not hugely vocal - she has a squeaky little meow that she gives us when we come down in the morning - either to say hello or to tell us off for not feeding her sooner. She also purrs loudly - I’m happy with those 2. Yesterday though she gave a tremendous yowl - I thought she must be strangling herself ( or has stepped on Lego) but when I rushed out she was casually walking along. So, clearly you won’t know what that’s about but tell me about your cat communication. What are the situations when your cat gets vocal with you? I’m sure I can learn lots from you veterans.

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dementedpixie Wed 16-Dec-20 10:19:21

Has she been spayed?
I have gone a walk before and had one of mine follow me yowling. Think it meant 'slow down, I want to come with you'

Divebar Wed 16-Dec-20 10:26:11

She hasn’t been spayed... Our rescue said not to do it before 6 months. I’m off to the vets this afternoon so will be making an appointment for the New Year. Do you think she was looking for a gentleman caller?

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Divebar Wed 16-Dec-20 10:27:32

I’ve heard of people walking their cats on a harness but have never seen anyone do it in real life.

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TheLongRider Wed 16-Dec-20 10:29:37

I'd say she's looking for a mate alright! Keep her in until you get her spayed. You might notice the neighbourhood Toms hanging around.

MatildaonaWaltzer Wed 16-Dec-20 10:30:20

I have a howler. He likes to go into the bathroom and stand in the shower where the howl echoes even more. Our cleaner thinks he's in some kind of agony, but he's just chatting. It is very bloody loud (just taken him to the vet, and had to wait out in the car because of covid. Me and the lady in the car next door heard him from 20 paces & closed car doors as the vet brought him out again).
Your kitty is absolutely sweet by the way.

creaturcomforts Wed 16-Dec-20 10:42:41

Aww, she's absolutely gorgeous

Divebar Wed 16-Dec-20 10:57:53

Thank you nice people. She won’t be going outside yet.... although I think she’s keen to.

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drspouse Wed 16-Dec-20 11:25:30


helpfulperson Wed 16-Dec-20 11:29:34

In my 7 month old I think it means 'oh, I'm on my own. Where is everyone ?'

Divebar Wed 16-Dec-20 11:31:32


Oh yes. She stays downstairs... as soon as she hears movement in the morning she starts her plaintive little mewing like Orphan Annie.... but thankfully no yowling at bedtime. Yours sounds AFFRONTED. grin

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Toddlerteaplease Wed 16-Dec-20 11:33:51

Cheddar has an opinion on everything. Can have conversations with her

TheQueef Wed 16-Dec-20 11:37:56

I've got one who only meows if treats are late, one who never makes a sound unless you are late letting her in then she sings the song of her people, loudly.
The other one never shuts up. Replies to anyone speaking, has a wide range of sounds from a mi to a sentence and even shouts at the other cats.
I think the stares and blinky eyes are more reliable communication.

Babdoc Wed 16-Dec-20 11:38:55

She is almost certainly calling for a mate, OP! The only other reasons for loud yowling are during fighting, to intimidate their opponent - it can be bloodcurdling - or when they get old, senile and deaf, so yowl loudly because they can’t hear themselves, or if they suffer a sudden pain, eg you accidentally tread on their tail or foot when they creep up silently behind you.
My own cat communicates with body language rather than vocally. She will look at me entreatingly and lead me to her dish, pointedly indicating its lack of edible content.
If she doesn’t like what I then put in it, she gives me a withering look and makes digging motions beside the bowl, as if burying shit!
An eloquent way of expressing her disgust at Whiskas when she wanted Dreamies.

dementedpixie Wed 16-Dec-20 11:39:53

Normally spaying/neutering should be done at 4 months. My boys were done at 4 months but I had to go to a different vet as mine said 6 months too.

I dont need a harness to walk my cats, they just follow me when I go out. When I put the bins out on a Friday night we (dd and i) go for a walk with them to the end of the street and back. Sometimes a ginger cat tags along

dementedpixie Wed 16-Dec-20 11:42:23

Out for a walk!

Divebar Wed 16-Dec-20 12:13:37

Ha ha. Looks fun. I only got her at 5 months in the middle of lockdown 2.

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QueenPaws Wed 16-Dec-20 12:14:41

Mine doesn't have an unvoiced thought in his head
He purrs, chirps, shouts, and says MAMA hmm
It can be anything from wanting food to he has his claw stuck and needs rescuing or his mate is at the window wanting to come in

Divebar Wed 16-Dec-20 12:14:52

If she doesn’t like what I then put in it, she gives me a withering look and makes digging motions beside the bowl, as if burying shit!

Feline equivalent to baby signing.

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dementedpixie Wed 16-Dec-20 12:18:48

Mine just look at you like you've crapped in their bowl if they don't like whats been offered

InTheShadowOfTheMushroomCloud Wed 16-Dec-20 13:41:02

Our cats (lasted until 21and 22) would yowl. It sounded like 'mouse' or 'mum'. We would run to them and find them sat there... they just wanted us to appear.
As they both got old dementia set in and the yowling happened in the dead of night. We would go downstairs to find them sat in the dark dining room like some feline Mrs Doyle ( she stayed up every night just in case tea was required). As soon as they saw us it would calm them.
I think it's just a way of getting some attention... if they could, cats would have servants bells installed!

Gingaaarghpussy Wed 16-Dec-20 14:20:09

My cat occasionally yowls, I have no idea why. Its not like I'm missing. I'm usually in one of two rooms. I generally yell "what", then she zooms to me and sits and stares at me.
She also knocks things off my bedside table if I ignore her. While looking at me.
She purrs loudly when fussed but then decides to grab hold of my arm in her mouth and bite down hard when she's had enough. No warnings given.

miccoops Wed 16-Dec-20 14:50:35

My Leo just chats and chats all day.. he's the most chatty cat I've ever known and I'm convinced he can say 'hello'

IrisAtwood Wed 16-Dec-20 14:55:23

Mine chirrups whenever she enters a room or jumps up onto the sofa or bed. She also miaows at meal times and at the back door when she wants to go out. As she is now 13 years old she has started yowling downstairs at night time, presumably because she’s lonely or disorientated. Other than that she purrs like and engine and growls if she’s being held and wants to get down.

LegoPandemic Wed 16-Dec-20 14:56:42

My boy cat likes to drink out of the tap. He sits on the side of the sink and miaows until we turn the tap on for him.
My girl cat talks - she’s very chatty when she wants food. She is also very vocal if she finds a catnip mouse.

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