Cat General Health

Why Do Cats Knead? 4 Surprising Reasons You May Not Know!

Have you ever found your cat making biscuits against your sofa, blankets, or other soft objects? This is called kneading and while not all cats do it, it’s a great way to tell that your furry friend is actually pretty happy. But, why do cats knead? Is it just because they’re happy or is there something else going on behind the scenes?

In this article, we’re going to tell you what cat kneading is as well as share some of the few reasons you may find your companion digging their nails into you or your furniture. 

Cat Kneading Explained

Cat kneading is extremely common and should never be a cause for concern, unless, it’s destroying your furniture! You guessed it, a kneading cat looks like they are getting pizza dough ready with their paws. But, the truth is, all cats do it differently.

Some cats will purr frantically while they slowly push their paws back and forth. Others will dig in their claws as they knead. You may even find that your furry friend uses all four paws to express themselves. When they enter this trance-like state, it typically means that they’re really happy

Why Do Cats Knead? Top 4 Reasons Cats Knead

A kneading cat is a happy cat. Some even dribble slightly or nibble on the object they’re kneading. This may seem strange but, the truth is, it is a trait that they learn during kittenhood. Cats kneading against their mother’s belly is extremely common. It is their way of pushing milk from the teat. 

So, why do cats knead as they grow up? Let’s take a look at four of the most common reasons:

1. Marking Their Territory

Cats are territorial creatures and when they want to mark what’s theirs, they use the scent glands in their paws to release pheromones. A cat making biscuits is actually activating its scent glands to make sure any other animals know that they’re in its spot

2. Returning the Affection

If you’re cuddled up on the sofa stroking your cat and they knead you in return, they’re simply telling you they love you. Unfortunately for you, the happier they are, the harder they will knead which can become quite painful. Whatever you do, don’t get angry at them as they are only trying to show you affection and don’t realize that their claws actually hurt. 

3. Stretching Their Muscles

Your cat will spend an average of 15 hours of its day sleeping. If you slept that much, you’d probably want to get up for a little stretch here and there too, right? Well, a cat kneading could just be them stretching their muscles to work out any kinks before heading straight back for a nap. 

4. Finding a Mate

If your female cat is lying on her back, purring, and kneading the air for no particular reason, she may be in heat. This will be her way of telling any male cat that may be lingering that they can come and say hello before potentially mating

Keeping Claws at Bay!

Why do cats knead? Well, it’s normally just because they love you! But, we know better than most that a kneading cat can really hurt. If your cat likes to knead you, try adding a soft object between you and them. You can also trim your cat’s nails or buy nail guards. 

Are you looking for your next pedigree pet to cuddle up on the sofa with? If so, check out Cat People! We will help you safely find the purrfect match.

Cat General Health

How Long Are Cats Pregnant For? A Guide to Cat Pregnancy

Welcoming small bundles of furry joy into your home is an exciting time for both you and your cat. But, while a human pregnancy lasts 9 months, the cat gestation period is very different. So, how long are cats pregnant for? And, what do you need to do to ensure that your cat has a happy pregnancy?

In this article, we’re going to tell you everything you need to know about cat pregnancy so that you can take all the necessary steps to keep your furry friend as comfortable as possible. 

Signs Your Cat May Be Pregnant

Learning how to tell if a cat is pregnant is essential for their health. It’s also important for you to have plenty of time to prepare for the birth of the kittens. The truth is, without an X-ray or ultrasound, you can’t be 100% sure until she’s already well into her pregnancy. 

Physical Signs of Pregnancy

Before answering the question “how long are cats pregnant for?”, it’s important you know which signs to look out for to be sure that your cat is pregnant in the first place. Some physical symptoms include:

  • A swollen abdomen
  • Weight gain
  • Sickness in the morning
  • Nipple discharge
  • Darker nipples

Behavioural Symptoms

You may notice that your cat is acting a little out of the ordinary. These behavioural changes could be signs that she is pregnant. For example, she may:

  • Become hungrier
  • Start vomiting infrequently
  • Become more affectionate
  • Purr louder and more frequently than usual
  • Be less tolerant of other animals

When getting closer to her due date, she may also suddenly lose her appetite and start nesting to get ready for the delivery of her kittens. 

How Long Are Cats Pregnant For? The 4 Stages of Cat Pregnancy

So, how long are cats pregnant for? Well, unlike the 9 months of pregnancy that humans go through, the cat gestation period takes anywhere between 63 and 65 days. The majority of cats become fertile at the age of six months but some breeds can get pregnant earlier. Cats typically go through 4 stages during pregnancy. These include:

  • The Early Stage – During this stage, your cat may experience morning sickness, a loss of appetite, and nausea.
  • The Middle Stage – This is the time where your cat will gain a significant amount of weight. You may also be able to feel the kittens developing in her belly. Because one litter of kittens can have more than one father, the peak of her weight and size gain will depend on the number of kittens she’ll be delivering. 
  • Pre-Labour – During pre-labour, her nipples will become more prominent and she may start lactating a little. She’ll also be nesting, i.e. finding a cosy spot to welcome her babies into the world. 
  • Labour and Delivery – When your cat goes into labour, she’ll start licking her genitals more often and will make noises due to the discomfort. She will start giving birth within one hour of going into labour and kittens should appear every 15 to 20 minutes. 

While you want to help her by staying comfortable, you should let your cat do her thing. You must leave the kittens with her without touching them so that she can clean them after birth. She will also eat the placenta for extra nutrients. 

Are you looking to adopt a pedigree queen to breed beautiful kittens? If so, check out our Cat People platform, a safe space designed to help you securely search for your new furry friend!

Cat General Health

How Long Do Cats Live? Understanding the Average Cat Lifespan

As a pet owner, it’s completely normal for you to want your furry friend to stick around for as long as possible. But, how long do cats live for? The truth is, it depends entirely on their lifestyle, diet, and environment. 

Here, we’re going to tell you a little more about the average cat lifespan and what affects it. We’ll also tell you some key differentiators between illness and ageing so that you can look out for any signs that your cat may not be feeling its best. 

Understanding the Average Cat Lifespan

According to studies, the average cat lifespan in the UK is 14 years but the longevity of our purring partners does depend on a few factors. For example, crossbred cats tend to live 1.5 years longer than purebred cats. Also, Bengal cats have a life expectancy of 7.3 years while Birman cats have a life expectancy of 16.1 years. 

While breed does play a role in the average life expectancy of a cat, you also need to pay great attention to your cat’s overall health. A cat that maintains a healthy weight, eats high-quality food, is active, and receives a lot of affection is more likely to live longer than a cat with a poor lifestyle. 

Indoor Cats Vs. Outdoor Cats

When determining cat life expectancy, whether they live indoors or outdoors makes a huge difference. While you may think that they’d be happier outdoors, everything points towards keeping them inside. Yes, your four-legged friend will be itching to get outside but studies suggest that indoor cats live three times as long as their outdoor counterparts

Aside from the fact that they’re removed from the stresses of the outside world, indoor cats tend to have all their vaccines up-to-date and are generally sterilized. Most importantly, they have regular access to water and typically stick to a strict feeding regime. If you’re lucky, you could even spend up to 20 years with your feline friend!

So, how long do cats live for outdoors? Well, there is no one-size-fits-all answer to this question. It depends entirely on their outdoor space. Yes, they can get more exercise and have the freedom to explore but they’ll also be exposed to far more parasites, ticks, fleas, and illnesses

They may come face-to-face with predatory wildlife or worse, a car! The great outdoors can be a scary place for a cat who is used to the comforts of home. We’re sad to say that the average outdoor cat doesn’t normally live past 10 years old

Differentiating Between Sickness and Ageing

Cats are the master of disguise. They’re amazing at hiding when they’re not feeling well so you must pay close attention to their behaviour. If your cat is more lethargic than usual, doesn’t want to play, has gained or lost weight, you may want to get in touch with your local vet. 

While these can all be natural signs of ageing, it’s always better to be safe than sorry. Other signs of illness include but are not limited to:

  • Hiding from you
  • Seeming ungroomed
  • Eating or drinking less or more than usual
  • Changes in their toilet habits

So, How Long Do Cats Live For?

As you can see, the average age of cats depends on a variety of factors. In addition to its breed, a cat’s health varies according to their age. Kittens are typically at higher risk of disease than older cats as their immune system isn’t as robust. Younger cats are also more likely to be involved in road accidents.

On the other hand, older cats usually experience more weight issues and aren’t as active as they tend to be less playful. Here’s a life stage chart you can refer to if you’re wondering why your cat isn’t as active or has put on a little weight. While it could be a health issue, you may find it’s a normal sign of ageing and maturity.

Cat Life Stages
Life StageAge
KittenZero to six months
JuniorSeven months to two years
AdultThree to six years
MatureSeven to ten years
SeniorEleven to fourteen years
GeriatricFifteen years old or above

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