Why do cats lick each other?
Does your cat spend hours and hours licking himself? Did he start licking at you as if you wanted to wash it? At YourCatCareguide we want to help you discover the reasons that lead cats to constantly lick and clarify all their doubts in this regard.
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Cats are animals that need to be cleaned to eliminate possible dirt accumulated in their fur , parasites or the dead. However, this is not the only reason that causes them to lick at all times. Contrary to what many people think, felines are grateful beings to their owners if they treat them properly and provide them with a decent life. Continue reading this article to find out all the causes that propitiate this kind of behavior and power answer to the question why cats lick .
The cat’s tongue
Before we talk about the causes that make cats lick themselves or even their owners, it is essential to speak the characteristics of their language .
Surely if your tongue came into contact with your skin noticed that the feeling it causes is not soft, on the contrary. While the dog’s tongue is smooth and soft like ours, the cat’s tongue is rough and rough, why ? Very simple, the upper part of the cats’ tongue is covered by a spiny tissue called conical papillae. This tissue, in appearance, is nothing more than small pimples formed by keratin, the same substance that makes up our nails, placed by rows in the same direction.
These small pimples allow them to drink water more easily and, above all, to clean and eliminate the accumulated dirt between their hair. However, when acting as a comb, this causes the animal to swallow a large amount of dead hair and, therefore, the dreaded hairballsappear .
Now that we know what the cat’s tongue is, why do they lick so much ?
As we all know, cats are excessively clean animals by nature. For that very reason, and unless their hair has been soiled, they need us to shower. So if you see that your cat constantly licks his paws, loin, tail or belly, do not worry, he is simply taking care of his hygiene, eliminating dead hair, possible parasites and accumulated dirt.
Paying attention to the behavior of the cat is fundamental to realize the possible anomalies that may arise in him. Therefore, it is very important to observe how often one licks and how much. Animals, like us, are beings of routines who also usually perform their tasks in the same way. If you see that your cat stops licking himself and that carelessness of his daily hygiene comes accompanied by general apathy or sadness, do not hesitate to go as soon as possible to the veterinarian to be examined as it may be developing some condition.
As a show of affection
As we mentioned before, cats are animals that need to be kept always clean, however and although they are considerably flexible, they do not have the capacity to reach each and every part of their body. At birth, it is the mother who is responsible for keeping them clean by constantly licking them. From the age of three weeks, cats begin to clean themselves and lick each other, both to wash those unreachable areas such as the ears and the neck, as if to strengthen the bond between the members of the cat group .
At this point, cats, besides cleaning up their brothers, will also lick the mother to show her affection. In this way, if your cat lives alone with you, without the presence of another cat, and if you lick it, do not be surprised that it is a good sign. The fact that your cat licks his hands , arms or even his face, means that he considers you as part of his group, and wants to demonstrate how much he likes you.
Yes, despite their fame, cats can also be affectionate. In fact, there are many displays of affection that you can show your owners if they treat you properly, providing you with the basic care you need , proper food, toys to release accumulated energy, scratching your nails, and a box of sand to make your needs.
Does your cat suffer from stress?
In the first point we talk about the importance of paying attention to your cat’s behavior . The development of a serious condition can cause a loss of mood that can lead the cat to neglect his hygiene. But what if the opposite happens? Cleaning up too much?
If your cat has gone from grooming herself to doing it more intensely and at all hours, she is likely to be suffering from stress or anxiety. Keep in mind that cats tend to clean themselves, in addition to hygiene, to relax. Lamber causes them tranquility, calm and serenity. For this very reason, sometimes cats suck on the blanket . In this way, when they feel stressed they resort to licking in search of relief and to return to find that much needed peace.
If you suspect the reason for the answer to the question why your cat licks himself is this, it is imperative that you try to find the focus of stress and above all consult your veterinarian as soon as possible.