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Do Cats Like Kisses? Feline Preferences Revealed

Written by: Brooke Billingsley

Last Updated on January 7, 2024 by Catster Editorial Team

woman kissing black cat

Do Cats Like Kisses? Feline Preferences Revealed

Kissing is a very intimate form of communication between people that allows us to show affection toward each other. There are lots of different types of kisses, and it’s no wonder that we’d want to plant one on our cat from time to time. After all, we love our cats and want them to know just how much we care. Not to mention how adorable cats are and how irresistible their little faces can be! But do our cats appreciate our kisses? Why or why not? This question is hard to answer since various factors come into play, the main one being your cats personality and preferences. Let’s talk about it!

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Do Cats Like Kisses?

Whether or not your cat likes being kissed is completely based on your cat’s personality, preferences, and relationship with you. Some cats enjoy kisses and others don’t like them at all. Even cats that enjoy kisses may not really understand what a kiss means. They may tolerate kisses because they like you, even though they don’t understand that you’re showing affection through the act of kissing.

If you have a cat that dislikes kisses and you attempt to force them anyway, you can inadvertently damage the relationship between you and your cat by inhibiting your cat’s ability and desire to trust you. Cats are particular and independent animals that need their boundaries respected to be happy and comfortable.

cat playing with owner
Photo credit: Andrew Kota, Pexels

How Do I Know if My Cat Likes Kisses?

The good news is that if your cat likes kisses, they’ll let you know through subtle body language cues. Slow blinking and leaning toward you when you come in for a kiss are an indication that your cat enjoys being kissed. Purring is also a good sign, although purring does not always indicate that your cat is happy. Head butting when you kiss your cat or if your cat begins “grooming” your face are also indications that your cat is enjoying the interaction.

How Do I Know if My Cat Dislikes Kisses?

If your cat doesn’t enjoy being kissed, they’ll let you know, although some cats may be more vocal about it than others. Leaning away from your kiss, flattened ears, and tail flicking are all indicators that your cat is not enjoying the encounter. It’s possible for your cat that generally enjoys kisses to have an off day and not enjoy your attempt at affection, and it’s important to respect their boundaries. Some cats may resort to growling, hissing, swatting, and even biting if they don’t want a kiss and you attempt it anyway.

cat biting owner
Image by: Anna Kraynova, Shutterstock

What Are the Risks of Kissing My Cat?

When it comes down to it, cats are animals, and they will bite or scratch if provoked or they feel threatened. If your cat doesn’t want to be kissed and you force the interaction, there’s a significant risk to your wellbeing. Cat bites tend to be prone to infection and usually require medical intervention, like antibiotics, to ensure no infection sets in. Scratches are also prone to infection and scarring.

Although domestic cats that receive routine veterinary care are at a low risk of transmitting zoonotic diseases, there are a few that your cat can pass to you through kissing (or a failed kissing attempt). Ringworm is a fungal infection that can be passed from your cat to your skin, and some parasitic infections, like toxoplasmosis, can be very serious if passed to a human. Cat Scratch Fever is a serious bacterial infection that cats can pass to humans through scratches and bites, as well as through licking an open wound.

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In Conclusion

Some cats may genuinely enjoy kisses, although it’s likely that they don’t fully understand the gesture. It’s not uncommon for cats to not enjoy being kissed, though. Kissing your cat carries risks of zoonotic diseases, and can lead to injury to you if you push your cat’s boundaries too far and force kisses and affection on them. You may also damage your relationship with your cat through this behavior, so make sure to closely watch your cat’s body language for cues that your cat is enjoying the interaction. If your cat doesn’t seem to appreciate kisses, that’s ok! There are plenty of ways you can show affection to your cat.

Featured Image Credit: Piqsels

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