Do Cats Know What Kisses Are? The Surprising Answer!

Cats have a reputation for being independent and antisocial. But the truth is, felines have a loving, affectionate side. They may not show this side to everyone they spend time with, but their owners can certainly experience it. As cat owners, we also like to show affection to our pets.

Many show their affection with kisses, at least once in a while. But do cats even know what kisses are? The short answer is sort of. Do they like kisses from their human companions? The short answer is sometimes yes, sometimes no. Read on to learn more about these topics.

How Cats Show Their Affection

Your cat can show you affection in different ways. It’s important to remember that cats are subtle creatures, so their signs of affection can be hard to notice if you’re not careful. That said, most cat owners should easily be able to pick up on their pet’s affection signals once the bonding process has taken place. Signs of ailment to look for include the following.


Purring is usually a sign that a cat is happy. Cats may purr when they roll around on the floor to scratch their backs, they tend to purr when they know they’re about to get a treat, and they like to purr when their bellies are full and they like to purr. they are content with their bed. If your cat purrs as it spends time interacting with you, it’s a sign that it’s having a lot of fun and has great affection for you.


Grooming is a loving behavior for cats. They do this to let other cats and others know that they are in a caretaker role. Your cat may show affection by grooming your ears, face, head, neck, or arms. They might even groom your feet. If they lick each other with intent, it’s a grooming behavior that likely translates into affection. However, if the licking is constant or seems like an obsession, there could be a problem and your vet should be consulted.

Slow flashing

If your cat looks at you and blinks slowly, it’s a sure sign that they trust and admire you. Their slow blinking lets you know they are relaxed and feel connected to you. This is considered the way a cat kisses, which is obviously very different from our human way of kissing. You can reciprocate whenever you see your cat slowly blinking his eyes at you, and he should understand that you are showing your affection in return.

woman kissing her cat
Image reproduced with the kind permission of Pixabay

Most cats can understand that human kisses are a sign of affection.

Cats don’t instinctively know what a human kiss means. However, they can learn what it means over time. They can understand your affection when you pet and cuddle them. If you add a kiss to the mix, they’ll understand that kisses are just another way to show them your affection. Some cats like kisses, some don’t. The way your cat feels will be shown by how they react to your kisses.

Signs a cat likes kisses

Cats who like to receive kisses will not hesitate to let you know. They will show many signs of activity appreciation, such as:

  • leaning into your kisses
  • Follow you after receiving kisses
  • Rubbing against you after receiving kisses
  • Groom you while you give kisses
  • Wrapping his tail around your arm or leg during or after a kiss

Signs a Cat Hates Kisses

Some cats don’t like to be kissed and never get used to the activity. They will do what they can to let you know too. Here are some signs that a cat might not like being kissed:

  • Walk away from a kiss attempt
  • Become aggressive during or after a kiss
  • Put their ears back during a kiss
  • Slap your face when you try to offer a kiss

A quick recap

Most cats learn what kisses mean over time. They understand that whenever their owners offer a kiss, the offer is out of love. However, not all cats like to be kissed and don’t care if kisses are meant to provide affection. Whether a cat likes kisses depends on its unique personality and temperament.

Featured photo courtesy: Shutterstock

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