How Cats Communicate with Their Tails: Things You should Know

Your cat’s tail can tell you a great deal about what type of mood your cat is in. I really like studying my cats and watching them for a lengthy period of time. I find I’m learning more about them through their body language which supports me understand them better. I really like watching people too as their body language is just as interesting and tells me much about our society.

Your cat’s tail can move around in so many different ways. There is the gentle twitch Cassie uses when she is eating. Then there is the slow’tail wave’when she is lying on my lap being petted. She’ll often accelerate the wave or allow it to be stronger if I’m doing some cross stitch or reading and not paying enough awareness of her. She will even lay her tail on the top of book to create me stop reading so I can pay more awareness of her. This is a deliberate action on her behalf part.

Cat body language is fascinating. So is your body language of any animal, including humans, which is why I really like studying them. And the tail is really a special part of cat body language and a great tool that they use to speak with us.

When you notice your cat’s tail all fluffed out, she is probably frightened or angry and trying to create herself look bigger. Usually the fur will be looking at end for the exact same reason. If the tail is standing up straight, your cat is happy and content, while a low hanging tail involving the legs means she is unhappy about something or being submissive to an alpha cat. One that’s waving from sideways at an angle means she could possibly be derisive and not enthusiastic about you at all at the moment. It’s the cat comparable to being’given the finger’from a surly and unco-operative teenager.

A hooked tail means your cat wants to be friends but is not really sure about you, and one that’s straight and pointing out at a 45 degree angle is showing another cat that she doesn’t feel threatened but doesn’t really know the newcomer. She is ready to be friends once the tail is only at that angle.

If your cat is sitting and the tail is thrashing from sideways, she is suggesting that she is either excited, angry or irritable. You will have to be mindful and watch for other body language cues such as hissing or flattened ears. If the tail is only twitching when she is sitting, this means she is alert and enthusiastic about what is going on around her. This could be a good time to begin using her or to instruct her a fresh trick.

A trail that’s angled down means your cat could become aggressive and if you see that the tail comes out straight for somewhat before angling down, be mindful as which means she feels cornered or defensive and could ver quickly become aggressive and attack.

I love to see my cat’s tail standing straight out to the rear as what this means is my cat is in a good mood. She is not feeling aggressive or focused on anything, life is treating her well. Even better is seeing her tail upright and quivering slightly as what this means is she is very happy to see me.

Study your cat as frequently as you can. You are able to learn lots of reasons for having their mood just by watching their body language, especially the language of the tail. And It is best to teach these tail movement meanings to your kids as early as possible. It may help prevent scratches and bites when they understand when to back from a furious cat. You will be amazed at simply how much cats use their tails to communicate.

The table guide to cat tail language

If a cat’s tail is… … it means he or she is
Upright Content
Up at a 45-degree angle Unsure
Angled back, moving back and forth “Good” excited or “fearful” excited (the ears and eyes can help determine which)
Upright, moving back and forth slightly Happy
Upright, tip bent Friendly
Straight, almost level with the spine Uneasy; not necessarily afraid
Hanging down, with a dip near the base Aggressive
Quickly swishing back and forth Angry
Puffed Frightened
Down at a 90-degree angle Attack mode
Tucked between the legs Scared, possibly experiencing pain
Sitting upright, tail tip is moving Alert, interested


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