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Why Do Cats Knead My Hair – Is It Normal?

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If cats could communicate with us, we would understand a lot of their more quirky habits in better detail, especially when they knead hair. Until cats can talk, we will have to keep inferring what they are trying to tell us. Kneading is pretty common in cats, but when they do it to you, it can be puzzling. So, you’re probably wondering, why do cats knead my hair? 

Cats knead your hair to show affection and trust. Kneading behavior is a form of social grooming that cats do to people they like. Your cat would not try to knead your hair unless they felt very close to you and comfortable being up close in your presence. 

Cats are born with a kneading instinct, and they will start doing the behavior when they are only infants. Kittens often knead their mother’s stomaches while feeding, which stimulates the mother cat’s lactation. This behavior often carries into their adult life, and cats will continue to knead to show love, appreciation, or affection. 

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Reasons Your Cat Kneads Your Hair 

 1. Your cat kneads your hair to try and leave his or her scent on you. 

2. Your cat is feeling relaxed and trying to show you affection. 

3. Your cat has a thing for hair and is drawn to play with it. 

4. Your cat is trying to groom your hair. 

5. Your cat is trying to show you that the two of you are friends.

6. Your cat likes the way your hair or head smells. 

7. Your cat kneads your head before bed because they are trying to nest.

What Does It Mean When A Cat Kneads You

 The overall act of kneading is associated with a happy and content cat. Your cat would not be kneading you unless they are in a good mood and feel very relaxed in their surroundings. Cats can often be quite skittish animals, so it is a huge sign of trust when a cat is willing to get so close to you to knead your head or body. 

When cats knead, people often joke that they look like bakers kneading loaves of dough. Cats that are kneading will gently press their front paws into a surface in a rhythmic motion. Sometimes cats will do this on a bed or comfy spot before they get settled for a nap, and sometimes they will do it to another animal or human. 

The habit of kneading in cats goes back to the earliest cat species who lived together as a community. Kneading was a social activity that allowed the group to bond, and it was also a way for them to groom each other. 

If you have heard about cats kneading, but your cat has never done this to you, that is also normal. Not all cats continue to be kneaders past being kittens. According to one veterinarian, only one in a hundred cats continues to knead in their adult life.

Why Does My Cat Knead My Hair And Drool

Often cats knead your hair or drool near your hair as a way to mark you as their human or mark their scent on a patch of territory. This is how cats act to signal to other animals that you have been marked and part of their group. Besides, kneading hair and drooling can be a type of sensory response from your cat. 

Cats do not usually drool as much as some dog breeds, but drooling with all animals is usually an unconscious behavior. Often cats drool when their muscles are unclenched and relaxed. Kneading puts cats in a relaxed and almost meditative state, and this may cause them to drool a little bit unintentionally! 

It is likely that while your cat is kneading your hair and drooling, they are probably also purring. Cats purr as a sign of joy and verbally signal when they are pleased, whether they just ate or feel very comfortable. 

This behavior is once again linked to how cats acted when they were infants with their mothers. Purring was a verbal cue to let the mother cat know that the kitten was happy and getting enough milk. It is one of the most charming things about cats, and we are so glad they continue to purr into adulthood! 

Why Does My Cat Knead Me But Not My Husband

If you notice your cat has a favorite person in the family to knead, you might be curious why you or a certain person has been singled out. Cats knead people they are very comfortable around, so if they avoid getting too close to a certain member of your family, it might be a sign your cat does not feel close to them. 

There is no reason to get upset if you or your husband is not your cat’s favorite person. You can take steps to build a great relationship with your cat. Some ways to do this include being the person to feed your cat every day, taking extra time to pet and groom your cat, and making sure you are always very gentle and welcoming when your cat tries to come near you.

Cats usually grow more comfortable the longer they spend time with someone, so the easiest way to work on this is to make sure you are spending a lot of quality time together. 

There is no real way to know why your cat has picked favorites, but it could also be for the simple reason that they like how one person smells more than the other, and that is why they are kneading their hair. 

Your cat may not like the smell of your partner’s cologne or body wash, and that could cause them to stay away from someone in particular. It greatly depends on your cat’s personality, but some cats latch on to a certain household member and do not show as much interest in everyone else. 

Why Is My Cat Obsessed With My Hair 

Cats are obsessed with hair because it is the part of a human that most resembles their fur. Hair feels familiar to cats, and it also has a distinct smell for every human. Cats also love to chew on all kinds of different textured objects, and often they will gnaw on hair as a playful activity. 

While the act of a cat kneading or playing with your hair is charming, it can also be quite annoying or downright painful if your cat has sharp claws. One of the worst things you can do for your relationship is to throw your cat off of you while they are playing with your hair. 

Your cat means no harm when they do this, and it is truly an indicator of how much they like you. If you react negatively, they may get upset and become afraid to get close to you in the future. 

The best thing to do if your cat plays with your hair and won’t leave you alone is redirecting their kneading efforts to a different surface. Give your cat a soft pillow or blanket that they can knead instead, and both of you should be a lot happier. 

Final Thoughts

witnessing kneading, purring, or drooling are good ways to tell if your cat feels happy. It is a great sign and shows you that your cat loves its home environment. On the flip side, if you find your cat seems moody, withdrawn, and rarely seeks you out to show affection, you may want to evaluate if something is bothering your cat in their home environment. 

In general, a cat that occasionally kneads or chews on your hair is a pretty mild problem to have, but you want to make sure your cat does not get into the habit of eating hair. For one, human hair product usually has foreign substances on it from the different hair products we use, and you do not want your cat ingesting anything harmful. 

Secondly, it might be ok when your cat chews on your hair, but you do not want your cat to start doing this to your guests or when others come over. It is best to be firm and lay down ground rules about appropriate behavior from the start to not have to retrain your cat once they have developed bad habits down the line.