Interpreting Your Cat’s Tail Language

Cats can be hard to figure out—oftentimes, they’re quiet and mysterious. However, one of the easiest ways to figure out what your cat is saying is by looking at her tail. The tail is one of the most prominent methods of communication a cat possesses. Learn more here from a Lorain veterinarian.


If your cat’s tail is hoisted up in the air, straight and true like a flagpole, your pet is confident and self-assured. Many cats will hoist the tail when they see you’re coming home—it means she’s happy to see you. Give your cat some love, as they’ll generally be very friendly with the tail in this position.


A tail that’s tucked between the back legs signifies fear, nervousness, and submission. Various factors could contribute to this: another pet, an unusual sound, or even a guest in your house.


Some people call this tail position the question mark. When a cat’s tail is curved, your cat’s mood is playful. Let her express herself—play with her, use some toys, or shine a laser light on the floor and watch your cat try to catch it. It’s not only great fun for your cat, it doubles as good exercise!


The classic puffed tail, held straight up, is a sign of agitation. Your cat’s puffed tail is an attempt to make the body look bigger, in an attempt to ward off danger. If your cat’s tail is puffed and she’s looking at you, it’s best to get out of the way!


When a cat wraps her tail around your leg, it’s as if she’s wrapping a comforting arm around you. The wrap signifies affection and love. Return the favor and show your cat some love.

Remember, not all cats are the same. Some may exhibit different signs to mean different things, so it’s best to contact your Lorain veterinarian to get a more conclusive opinion on what your cat is really saying with her tail!

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