My cat likes to touch me. The interesting part of this is that he just likes to place his paw against my hand. I feel sure that my hand or arm has to be bare so that he can feel the warmth of it and achieve a genuine touch, a connection, flesh to flesh.
He does this unprompted and he does it deliberately. He must like it. He must want to do it and it must give him pleasure to do it. He lies down over me while I am working and then reaches out for my hand or lower arm. He doesn’t do it all the time but these days he does it frequently.
I remember the picture by DW of Marvin, a wonderful ginger tabby feral cat turned domestic cat, who who did exactly the same thing with his friend Daisy the family dog.
This is a particular kind of contact. I think that it is important. The paw is placed gently as mentioned against the recipient.
I think that this is quite an important type of behaviour. It is a behaviour which seems to express the same sort of emotions that people have and which motivates people to touch each other in the same sort of way.
Some people are touchy-feely and some people are not but everyone who deeply likes someone will want to touch them and the classic way is to hold hands. This is an expression of togetherness and it is done because it feels good. It feels good emotionally. And I have to presume therefore that my cat does it for the same reason.
There’s lots of talk about cat emotions. We don’t really know much about the emotions of a domestic cat. We know they can be sad and happy and feel depressed or feel sprightly and playful. But some of the other emotions that humans feel we’re not sure about in respect of the domestic cat.
I hope that my cat touching me like this provides an insight into the emotions of a domestic cat. There is no doubt in my mind that he’s doing it because we are connected emotionally (mentally) and he wants to connect physically at the same time. It is a desire which confirms (if one is needed) that a domestic cat can form a deep friendship with a human.
I hope that cat owners everywhere realise this. If they do, I hope that it ensures that they are respectful towards their cat. The more we understand what is going on in the head of our cat the more we are likely to be respectful of her or him because a lot is going on contrary to what some people believe.