One of my favorite feline friends was a beautiful Siberian forest cat. She had long, white hair and was just a sweetheart. I got her from a shelter and was so happy to have her as a new friend.
One of the funniest things she used to do regularly was put her butt in my face. I called her ‘Bloomer Butt’ because when I found myself looking at her rear end, which was often, it looked like she had bloomers on.
She loved to wag her cute little cat butt in my face all the time. It was the funniest thing, but I always wondered why cats put their butt in your face. Let’s get to the, ahem, bottom of this perplexing question.
Why Does My Cat Stick Her Butt in My Face?
There are actually several reasons why your cat would stick their butt in your face. It is a common cat behavior that can communicate different messages. Here are some of the common reasons for cats’ butt presentations.
It’s a Sign of Affection
Granted, it’s not the same thing as a lick on the face or a rub up against your leg, but when your cat presents her butt to you, it means she loves you and wants to be petted. Cat owners the world over know that nothing gets your attention like a butt in your face, and so, it’s an effective way to get some extra love.
This behavior is deeply rooted in instinctual behaviors. Mother cats show their affection to kittens by licking them all over their body, including their bum. Your cat is just passing on the love.
The next time your cat comes sauntering over to you with body language like a raised tail and a purr while she gives a good view of her backend, she’s telling you she wants some affection. So, give her a nice scratch at the base of the tail, and she’ll be very happy. It will also make you feel good.
Your Cat Trusts You
When your cat sticks her butt in your face, it’s also a sign of trust. Your cat is basically turning her back on you, and that means she trusts that you won’t hurt her in any way. Her rear end is a vulnerable area, and since she can’t see what you’re doing or act quickly to defend herself, it’s her way of saying she trusts that she won’t need to defend herself.
Your cat knows that you’re a good cat owner and her best friend, so she knows you wouldn’t do anything to harm her. She’s purring, and loving on you to show just how much she trusts you.
Once you’ve reached that stage of your relationship with her, you can be assured, that though it might be the first time she’s done this, it won’t be the last. Get ready for a parade of cat butt presentations!
Your Cat Is Marking His Territory
You might know about your cat’s anal glands, but they also have scent glands all over their body. When they rub up against you, they are often marking you as their territory in a typical cat behavior known as allorubbing.
While they are not marking you with any kind of liquid as you might have seen your dog do, they are releasing pheromones to let other cats know that you belong to them.
According to Alycia Washington, DVM, when two cats engage in allorubbing, they often start by rubbing their cheeks together, and then they go down the body until their rubbing tail to tail.
Their body language is similar to what you see with your feline friend. Each cat’s tail is erect in an upward posture which communicates friendliness and acceptance of the other cat into their feline group. They might also meow to one another in a friendly tone.
Your Cat Is Telling You How She Is Doing
Another thing your cat can communicate using her butt is information about her health, age, and sex. Once again, she’s using those scent glands to give the inside scoop on how she’s doing inside.
Other cats can pick up on what she’s putting out by using their olfactory sense, or sense of smell, to get a good whiff of everything they need to know. That way they know if this is a cat they might want to mate with or if it’s one they should avoid.
Your cat might be doing this because she has a problem. If she seems overly eager for you to scratch the base of the tail, or if you see that her coat is thinner in that area of her body, that could indicate she has an allergy to something like flea bites. If that’s the case, a visit to your veterinarian might be in order to help get the problem resolved.
Your Cat Is Politely Saying Hello
As a courtesy, you probably don’t stick your butt in someone’s face to say hello, but it is an appropriate greeting between feline friends. Raised tails are considered proper etiquette by the feline equivalent of Miss Manners. Not only is it a courteous way to say hello, but it also gives the other cat a lot of information using those pheromones.
Your cat is trying to tell you all about who she is and where she’s been. Enquiring minds want to know, so what better way to tell them than with your butt!
How Can I Show My Cat I Love Her Back?
With all this butt love going around, you may be wondering if you have to show off your own booty to return the affection. That’s not necessary, but there are some great ways you can show your kitty a little love. Here are a few ways to give a little love to your best friend.
Gaze Lovingly Into Your Cat’s Eyes
When you blink slowly and gaze into your cat’s eyes, you’re kissing her kitty style. She might not want the human version of a kiss, but you can share your love with a little eye action. You might notice your cat doing this in return when she looks at you and slowly closes her eyes.
Imitate the Sounds Your Cat Makes
All those special little meows, coos, and trills your kitty makes when she’s around you are her special love language for you. When you imitate those sounds right back at her, you’re telling her you feel the same way.
Let Your Cat Rub on You
You can also simply show your love by letting your kitty claim you as her territory. Let her rub on you, head butt you, and nuzzle your face. You can even initiate some of those loving rubs yourself.
Do a Little Grooming
Grooming your kitty is another way to show your love. You might be able to do all the things another cat would do — particularly the butt thing — but you can groom her human style. You can use grooming gloves or de-shedding brushes to ‘rub’ on them just like their mother would do when they were a baby.
Visit the Vet Regularly
Of course, to really show your cat the love you feel, make sure they get regular check-ups with your vet. You can keep them healthy and happy for a long, loving time to come!
Why Do Cats Rub Their Butt in Your Face? Final Thoughts
Cat behavior and cat language can sometimes be difficult to understand. Getting a cat butt in your face is one of those somewhat perplexing behaviors that cat owners know very well. While it might not be the most appealing thing you’ll ever see, it is a sign of love, affection, and trust.
Your kitty is trying to tell you that you are a friend, a member of their group, and someone they know has their back. So when you see that butt in your face, give a little meow and a coo as you pet the base of their tail. It’s the ‘purrfect’ way to say, “I love you right back!”