Have you ever been talking to your cat, maybe in that high voice, and your cat looks at you like you’re nuts? Or perhaps a strange noise makes your cat’s eyes go strangely wide and their ears go back? A cat’s facial expressions are priceless and can make you laugh out loud.
Facial expressions are one way cats express emotion. And we love them for it. I enjoy rubbing Tanzy under her chin and watching her nose flatten and her chin stick out, and I can tell she’s loving this affection. If she closes her eyes, halfway or fully, when getting affection, this is a good sign she is content and enjoyin’ the lovin’.
Of course, cats also express fear and anger through their facial expressions. A hiss and maybe a spit can accompany an angry expression. When this happens, watch out! You may be attacked! The best thing to do is to leave your puss alone and see if you can find what’s causing her to act that way then try to resolve the problem.
One facial expression not seen as often is the flehman grimace. Usually, it’s the males who do this when assessing their sixth sense. By breathing in a spray mark or a female’s rear end, the cat directs a “scent” into a chamber between the nose and mouth where it is analyzed. “With the ears slightly down, he wrinkles his nose and lifts his lips while taking in the ‘scent’” (365 Fascinating Facts You Didn’t Know About Your Cat, page 28). If you’ve ever seen this face, you may think there’s something wrong with your cat. Don’t worry, after a few seconds its over, and your boy is back to normal.
Cats do indeed show feelings through their facial expressions with most of them adding to your cat’s level of cuteness. And when your puss looks at you with love in her eyes, its priceless.
Gotta Love Them Cats,
Author of A Tuxedo Cat Christmas
The Feel-Good Christmas Story of 2015