HomeCat Behaviorcat emotionsanxietyWhy does my cat put his paw on my face when I hold him?


Why does my cat put his paw on my face when I hold him? — 20 Comments

      • Thank you. It doesn’t matter, though, if it’s good for me. I’m so grateful. He’s spent a long time in McPherson, Kansas at the shelter, without a solid home. I just hope that he will live a good few years without too much pain. Thanks, Michael, for your kindness, always.

        • Michael? I don’t know what MissMiss would do, but Shrimp would so appreciate being licked in return. And I really hate to admit that. If anyone is a crazy cat person, I guess it’s me.

  1. Shrimpster knew not to touch my face, even though he loved his caressed. He would, though, forcefully hold my wrist down, so that he could wash my hand. I loved that about him. One if many things he did, that were so endearing. <3. My granddaughter T.S. was born later in the day, here in Lincoln, after Shrimpie passed away.

  2. Scamp insists on sleeping with his head on my pillow and a paw on my face. His idea. And he keeps a paw on my arm when I am typing on my laptop. I guess he is a touchy feely guy.

  3. My cat Mitzy puts her paw on my face when she’s stretching in my lap. Sometimes she’ll sleep near my face, next to, but not on my pillow. Many times she sleeps on top of the blankets, but also at times, under them near my feet. She has 5 sleeping spots in my room, plus my bed, all at different levels, with most having a great view from a large picture window.

    • I dunno. I think you’re all correct. .. meh. Shrimp had a friend, an opossum. She still comes up on the landing, looking for him.

  4. Paws on my face are a ritualistic thing with several of my cats. When they approach and touch my face, they can expect a big kiss on the mouth from me. I won’t go so far as to say that they elicit it; but, they know it to be a given.

  5. Although a cat may put his/her paw on our face as a “distancing” behavior, at the same time I do believe it can be a sign of affection or even a way in which the kitty may be comforting their guardian. Sir Hubble Pinkerton often puts a paw on my face when I am holding him and even strokes my face from time to time. His brother, Angel cat Dr. Hush Puppy also would do this offering us comfort and showing his affection to us.

    • Yes, Jo, I agree in that, as mentioned, cats like to touch us with their paws. This is indeed a sign of affection.

    • Hey there, Jo. <3. I like that photo. Beautiful! Actually, I do believe Michael is most likely correct. A little bit too much stimulation, and the cat is going to back off. I'm the same way.

      • What is most important though, is not to back off. Do everything that you feel you can do to help. Cats are not pack animals. Thanks.

  6. Mercy gets on my lap and puts a paw on each cheek. She also often sleeps next to my face with a paw on my face. Since my cats have no boundaries they are often face to face with me in the kitchen, they own the bar. They make contact often with nose to nose touching.
    The cats in your photos are being restrained allowing the cat to sit on your arm encourages interaction. Cats are like horses you’ll never win a tug of war with either.

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