If you have a cat as a pet, you have probably wondered the reasons behind the actions of your favourite pal. The simple truth however is that there lies some surprising reasons that makes cats purr.
The big question now is why do cats purr? When a purring cat rubs against you, you most probably feel very pleased with yourself for being so lovable. But don’t move on from petting that kitty to patting yourself on the back just yet. Happiness isn’t the only thing that makes cats purr.
While you might hear purrs when your pet feels relaxed or friendly, but cats also purr when they’re hungry, stressed, or in pain. The simple truth is All animal behaviour depends on history, context and expectation.
As such, it is naive to think that your cat will only purr for one reason—it’s like thinking that people can only laugh for one reason.” Like how some guffaws are a reaction to humor while other giggles could come from nerves, cats’ purrs are open to interpretation.
Mother cats tend to purr to lead their kittens, because they are blind and deaf from birth. The purrs is meant to lead them towards food and warmth. Some veterinary doctors also believe that kittens purr to show they’re okay and as a way of bonding with their mother.
Purrs release feel-good endorphins, and experts are also of the opinion that cats use the vibrations to soothe themselves. That could mean purring while enjoying some cuddles from their owner, or as a way of calming their nerves or literally healing their pain.
Studies have found that whole-body vibrations of 35 to 50 Hz could help stimulate bone healing. Cats’ purr frequencies range from 25 to 150 Hz, and some suggest the vibrations could help kitties keep their skeletons strong.
One study in the journal Current Biology found that when cats were trying to get their owners to feed them, their purr frequency shot up to 220 to 520 Hz, which is quite close to the 300 to 600 Hz of a human infant’s cry. Researchers suggest the higher frequency makes the sound harder for not only human parents to refuse attending to the cries of their infants but also cat parents to ignore.
In conclusion, not all purrs are created equal. The best way to figure out your cat’s message is by looking at what else is going on. If you’re eating, your furry friend might have food on the brain. But a kitty curled up on your lap is probably just enjoying your company.