Why does my cat knead me and not my husband? It is because your cat is choosing you. He may be choosing you because you are the main carer for the cat in terms of feeding and general interaction. The cat bonds with you.
Cat kneading is part of a cat’s natural behavior. The way in which a cat kneads a person, is a very similar motion to that of kneading bread.
Not long after birth, a kitten will place his paws against his Mother’s mammary glands and knead gently to stimulate milk flow. That makes sense. Why then, is this cat kneading behavior carried on far beyond kitten-hood?
Another theory is that kneading is similar to cats marking their territory with scent glands near their paws. This may also explain why cats often knead on soft furnishings and blankets. They are leaving behind “scent” that marks your things as theirs. They also knead to make a soft place for a nest for giving birth and they knead before settling down in a location to sleep.
It is also advisable to try and discourage your cat from kneading on softer surfaces such as the sofa, because you don’t know how much damage your pet may be doing. For example, if he is ripping into cushions then this will become costly very quickly! We had a similar problem with the cat kneading/clawing the new leather couch.
|Why Does My Cat Knead Me And Not My Husband?|
|The Cat Bonds With You|
|Cat Kneading Time|
|Can I Stop Kitty Kneading In The Middle Of The Night?|
Why Does My Cat Knead Me And Not My Husband?
I know this feeling all too well and it leads to other questions. Why did the cat always sleep tucked up against my pillow on the bed but not my partner’s pillow?
Another thing the cat likes to do in the middle of the night is have a good gallop around the house.
What is the reason for this cat night crazy behavior?
The Cat Bonds With You
It probably isn’t just the kneading action from the cat, that is specific to you. It is the cats general behavior towards you.
If you are the person who is primarily in charge of feeding the cat, a strong bond is forged as the cat sees you as safety.
If your husband doesn’t participate in daily cat care, it’s likely that he won’t notice the kneading. However, cats love the attention and undivided attention from the people they feel close to. If your husband is not the type to participate in daily cat care, then your cat may be more interested in kneading you. There is nothing inherently right or wrong with this, it is just the way it is.
When our cat developed diabetes, the feeding process that had been in place for years, changed totally. We had to suddenly adopt a strict time schedule for his meal times. This time schedule was in order to give him the necessary twice daily insulin injections before he could eat.
Prior to the diabetes diagnosis, I had always fed the cat. Now, I had to overcome my fear of giving the cat an injection. My partner and I started sharing the feeding process. He gave the cat the twice daily injections for the first couple of months.
Now that we are both feeding the cat, the cat has developed a far stronger attachment to my partner then he had before.
Cat Kneading Time
So essentially, your cat is choosing you.
Some people don’t like to be woken up by kitty deciding that 2am is perfect cat kneading time. When cats knead it is usually accompanied by purring so it’s a double whammy. Now you are Awake, Awake!
However we don’t want to be mean to kitty by getting cross with him because he is just saying is that you are his safe place. He isn’t thinking about disturbing your sleep.
Even is the cat is not specifically kneading you, he may be kneading the bedding near you, then walking in a circle before more kneading. This can carry on for quite some time before the cat has made his happy sleping place.
There are some things you can do to help adjust this behavior that keeps everyone happy.
What if your cat pees on your bed? If your cat is unwell or a senior, that may be an explanation. Sometimes it may be your perfectly well and healthy cat that is peeing on your bed.
Can I Stop Kitty Kneading In The Middle Of The Night?
Here are two suggestions. The same basic principle applies in both suggestions.
Move kitty to a more acceptable space that has your scent and where he feels secure. How?
1.Put a comfy pillow on a chair or somewhere that is near the bed. If kitty starts being problematic in the middle of the night, relocate him to the pillow. Our kitty has a love of all things white, so there was a fair chance that a white comfy pillow would do the trick. I can’t say it was successful 100% of the time but some mornings I was surprised to see that he was still there.
2. Have a soft fleece rug nearby, at the end of the bed. As soon as the cat starts kneading, move him to the blanket. If the blanket or cushion/pillow is one that you use, it will already have your scent. The cat will like that. In cold weather consider a microwave warmed heat pad (specially for cats) underneath the bedding.
While we are on the topic of sleeping and cats – Why do cats like to sleep between legs. You just want to turn over but the cat is in the way.
Cats kneading behavior is very common and may happen at any time during the day or night. The person being kneaded usually takes care of the cat.
There are some things you can do to stop your furry friend from waking you up in the middle of the night with their kneading antics! Firstly, try the ideas given above. You could also try giving them a new toy for night-time playtime.
If all else fails and you would like to now more about this behavior, we recommend consulting an animal behavior expert or a vet.