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If you’ve had a cat in your life, you might already know that cats can be vocal at times. Petting them makes them purr; they hiss when they’re upset or feeling threatened; they meow for all kinds of reasons. This is how cats interact with humans and their environment.
Cats love when you talk to them. Even if they don’t understand the words you’re saying, they can pick up on the tone of voice. Felines are very intuitive animals. That means your cat can pick up on your emotions and respond to you through meowing, purring, and body language.
Let’s look more deeply at what we understand about communicating with cats and what they do and don’t understand. That way, you’ll know the best way to communicate with your furry friend.
Pro-Tip: If you are thinking of buying a cat or are a cat owner already, then you should be aware that taking care of the litter box can be a real chore. In this age of smart products, an automatic litter box has been created that actually makes life easier with taking care of the litter box. If you want to make your life much easier with a litter box that means you’ll never have to scoop litter again, check out the best automatic litter box on the market (in my opinion) on Amazon.
How Do We Know Cats Like Being Talked To?
We know that cats like being talked to because they want us to pet them and give them attention. Cats communicate with us by rubbing up against our legs or coming to greet us when we come home. They also purr when they’re happy and content with our presence.
Talking softly and gently to your cats will improve your relationship with them and allow a stronger bond to be built. Some cats might even respond with sounds that seem to mimic human responses.
The way we communicate to them, however, can also make them distrust us. They’ll get frightened and hide, for example, if we shout at them or speak angrily enough that you become a threat instead of something they can trust.
Talking to Cats
We know that cats like it when humans talk to them. They can understand the tones in our voices to the point that sometimes, they’ll even make human-like sounds themselves as a way to copy us.
We also know that cats hear our voices at a higher pitch than we do, so they especially enjoy soft, gently spoken tones and that they respond positively to them.
Have you ever noticed how cats react when their owners or other humans they’re familiar with yell at them?
Cats respond very differently than they do when they’re gently being called. They don’t understand the words we speak, but they seem to understand the intent behind them.
Cats Can Communicate with Humans
Humans and cats have been cohabitating for thousands of years. Over those years, communication between cats and humans has been evolving to a point where we believe they understand more than what we might think.
Let’s look at a hungry feline, for example. A cat will likely meow at you when they’re hungry.
I know for me personally; my cat Charlotte will wake me up in the morning, meowing if I don’t set her automatic cat feeder to feed her at 4 am. This is the time she prefers to eat her first meal of the day.
If you are interested in the automatic cat feeder I use (and recommend), check it out on Amazon: Check Out This Automatic Cat Feeder I Recommend.
You’ve learned that when a cat meows in this specific way, they need to be fed. This type of communication is what has evolved over the centuries that humans have cared for cats.
Cats have evolved to know that how they meow or yowl at us will cause us to do something. For example, they could be in pain, scared, anxious, or hungry.
Do Cats Care if You Talk to Them?
Cats care if you talk to them, even if they don’t understand the words you’re saying. Talking to cats can do amazing things to your health, both physically and mentally. While cats don’t understand words, they understand body language and the tone of voice.
We could be speaking gibberish to our cats, but the tones of our voices let them know when we might have had a good or bad day, that it’s time for dinner, or whether we’re happy or sad.
We don’t have to make sense when we speak to our cats; we have to make an effort to communicate with them regularly for them to begin to understand our intent.
Benefits of Talking to your Cat
Owning cats and other pets can positively affect our mental state. We know that caring for our cats helps with feeling lonely and reducing stress. Speaking cheerfully to our cats can likely make us feel happy, too.
Owning cats can even help with lowering blood pressure and heart disease. Plus, having a feline friend around might help us learn how to build relationships with others and live together under one roof.
Communicate with your cat. It’s beneficial to both you and your feline companion. They may not understand or respond with words, but they’ll listen to you and enjoy every part of it.
Is It Weird to Talk to Your Cat?
It’s not weird to talk to your cat because your cat understands the intentions behind your words and will frequently “talk” back to you. In fact, there are many mental and physical health benefits from communicating with your feline friend.
Cats will meow or yowl when they try to communicate with us verbally. As a result, they don’t communicate with each other as much in this way. It turns out that the sounds our kitties make are the way they’ve evolved to communicate with humans.
There are many benefits to talking to cats. They help us feel less lonely, and they can cheer us up. Also, they can help with reducing stress when we care for them.
Some professionals even say that it’s weird if you don’t talk to your cat. If you aren’t sure where to start, you can check out the book How To Talk To Your Cat (available on Amazon.com). This book will teach you how to talk to your cat and how to listen to them.
Do Cats Understand When You Talk to Them?
Cats understand when you talk to them. Even if cats don’t have the cognitive ability to understand the specific words we speak to them, they can understand the tone of voice we use and the emotion behind our words. In addition, cats can feel our intention through the words we use with them.
Your feline companion can recognize sounds other than your voice associated with your actions through repetition. An example would be the words you speak every time you want to feed them.
If you ask your kitty if they’re hungry every day before pouring food into their bowl, they’ll learn to recognize these sounds and show excitement. Have you ever fed your cat wet food and seen them come running as they hear the sound of the can being opened?
They clearly have learned what the sound means, and they’ll run excitedly toward the sounds, often meowing and rubbing against you to show that they’re happy.
Through repetition, they can begin associating the sound of the can and the inflection in your voice when you open up the can.
Meowing at Your Cat
We know that cats don’t understand the specific meaning of the words we speak to them but understand the intent behind those words or their actions.
What about meowing? Do cats know when we meow at them? Unfortunately, they don’t.
When we meow at our cats, it simply sounds more like human words. Since we’re people, no matter how hard we try, we can’t meow like cats. I’ve tried meowing at my own cat, a Domestic Shorthair named Charlotte, and she doesn’t seem to care.
Just like talking, though, when we repeatedly meow at our cats and associate those meows with an action, they may begin to recognize the sounds and what we do while or after we make them.
Do Cats Understand When You Cry?
Cats understand when you cry. They can pick up on this even if they can’t understand the reasons. Since cats can read your body movements, such as posture or facial expressions, they can understand when you’re upset or crying.
We’ve looked a lot at how humans interact with cats. We understand that while cats don’t comprehend precisely what our words mean, they appreciate the intent behind those words through our body language, actions, and repetition.
Work on creating a solid bond with your cat through caring for them and showing them affection, and that understanding will grow into a relationship beneficial for both you and them.
Not only do cats understand when humans talk to them, but they also love it. So talking to your cat can be beneficial for both you and your cat. Since your cat can read facial expressions and body language, talking to them allows you to create a beautiful bond that’ll last a lifetime.
One of the benefits of the pandemic has been that I’ve spent a lot of quality time with my cat. She often comes to me when I call her, and she seems to enjoy it when I use a pleasant sounding voice. So I do think cats enjoy it when we talk to them.
If you enjoyed this article, check out a few more:
- 14 Cats You Can Take On Walks (Best Cat Breeds): Click Here.
- Do Cats Hunt Cockroaches? (The Reasons Why): Click Here.
- Are Female Cats Better Hunters? (Clear Answers): Click Here.
Here are some of my favorite cat products
In addition to checking out some other More Meows articles, I hope you’ll check out some of my favorite cat products as well. These are affiliate links, so if you end up using them, I’ll get a commission at no extra cost to you. These are the products I really do find most helpful.
Litter Box: I started out with normal, traditional litter boxes for my cat. Then, I tried this automatic litter box on Amazon (affiliate link), which helped reduce the litter upkeep. Finally, I am now a believer in the Litter-Robot 3 Connect on Amazon (affiliate link). This robotic litter box is not for everyone based on the price tag, but for me the benefits (very little upkeep, works efficiently, clean, mobile app) far outweighed the cost.
Cat Tree: I have purchased a couple of this Amazon Basics Cat Tree on Amazon (affiliate link). My cat spends a lot of time on and around this cat tree, which I position near my sofa. She uses the scratching posts on this cat tree multiple times a day, which means she is not scratching the sofa instead.
Cat Water Fountain: I love this cat water fountain on Amazon (affiliate link). There are three main benefits to having a water fountain like this for your cat. The first benefit is that it keeps water running so that your cat doesn’t need to drink still water. The second benefit is that it filters the water. The third benefit is that it will keep your cat hydrated!