Why do some cats "knead" and some do not?

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Why do some cats "knead" and some do not?

Updated Jan 4, 2010

Cats may knead or "make biscuits" for a variety of reasons. (Source: Wikipedia.com)
Cats may knead or "make biscuits" for a variety of reasons. (Source: Wikipedia.com)

Kittens knead their paws on the belly of their mother to stimulate milk production. Because this action brings immediate rewards and comfort, it’s not unusual for cats to continue this behavior with their human loved ones as adults. When a cat kneads your belly, he feels emotionally secure and happy. In fact, the action is likely to be accompanied by purring, right?

Felines also have scent glands on the bottom of their feet, so a cat may “knead” to gently mark his territory. Some cats grow out of the behavior, but most people report that their cats knead, or “make biscuits” as it is sometimes referred to, on a regular basis.

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Cathy Rosenthal, CHES, CFE
Animal Welfare Communications Specialist

Cathy brings more than 25 years' experience in the animal welfare field. She is a sought-after speaker, Certified Humane Education Specialist, a syndicated pet advice columnist, an author, a publisher, and of course - a loving pet parent.

Read more about Cathy here or check out her Non-Profit's page to see more ways she can help you and your organization.

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