OK, you’ve heard your cat meow after scratching your eyes out, breaking something of value, or upsetting you with her behavior. However, you aren’t sure whether that’s her way of saying sorry or “Whatever, I don’t care, feed me right meow.”
Before you freak out over the pawsibility of your cat being a sociopath, we’ve got your back. Right off the bat, we have to remind you that cats don’t communicate the same way humans do. Sure, they’re known to meow here and there and make you question whether they’ve got a language of their own.
They’re more likely to employ body language, strange sounds, and strong scents to ensure whoever’s targeted gets the message. So, when your cat does something that upsets you, you might notice her performing one of the behaviors we’ve mentioned down below.
Do cats know when they’ve done something wrong?
Cats are smarter than you might think – they’re capable of discerning whether or not you’re annoyed with them by observing your behavior, the tone of your voice, and your movements. On one hand, they don’t know the difference between right and wrong the same way humans do.
On top of that, a cat’s “right” doesn’t have to be the same as a human’s “right.” Scratching the table might be a nightmare for you, but a fun activity for her, for example. On the other hand, cats observe your behavior and know when something makes you happy or unhappy.
And, when you have a great relationship with your cat, she’s going to want to make you happy at all times. At the end of the day, cats know when they’ve done something wrong by the way you react.
Do cats apologize when they’re sorry?
Well, yes and no.
Cats don’t speak the same language humans do, of course. Not to mention that cats aren’t capable of experiencing the same complex emotions as humans, such as guilt or regret. Now, cats might not say sorry the same way your friends or family would.
However, that doesn’t mean that cats don’t do anything to try to change the mood, check whether you’re annoyed with them, and make you happy. Besides, cats are known to perform certain acts to build social bonds with both cats and humans.
On the off chance that your cat notices she’s broken the bond with you, she might try to make amends by staring at you, blinking at you, or even meowing at you. Oh, how thoughtful of her!
How can you know whether your cat’s trying to apologize?
1. She’s staring at you
Starting with a bang, when your cat stares at you, she’s pretty much saying “You are my BFF!” Your cat might not say she’s sorry, but she might start showing you more affection and attention than before to ensure you understand how much she loves you. You know you have to forgive her, right?
2. She’s meowing at you
Cats meow at humans for a million reasons. Whether they’re greeting you, begging you to feed them, or telling you that something’s wrong, they’ve learned to produce sounds to get your attention.
Actually, there’s a chance your cat might start meowing at you to check whether you’re angry with her. There’s also a chance she might not stop meowing because she wants you to pick her up, cuddle her, and shower her with words of affirmation.
3. She approaches you
Cats aren’t creeps, but they’re known to follow you around and approach you slowly after they’ve done something wrong. Why do they do that, though?
Turns out they’re checking whether you’re angry with them and they aren’t sure whether they’re safe to headbutt you or rub against you. Therefore, when you notice your cat approaching you slowly, know that she’s pretty much asking you “Are you still angry with me?”
4. She’s headbutting you
While we’re on the topic of headbutting, we might as well explain what that means.
When a cat starts pushing you with her head, rubbing her head against you, or tucking her head under your arms, she’s begging for attention. She probably knows that you’re angry with her and she wants you to know she’s sorry.
5. She’s rubbing her body against you
Oh, that’s pretty much the same reason why she’s rubbing her body against you, too.
As a matter of fact, she’s marking her territory, claiming you as one of her own, and spreading her scent on you. Even though that might sound strange, your cat possesses scent glands on different parts of her body and that’s why she rubs them on you.
6. She’s purring at you
Purring’s almost always a sign of affection. When cats think they’re safe and secure around humans, they’re likely to start purring as a way of saying “I like you.” When they’re trying to say they’re sorry, though, they’re known to start purring because they’re aware of how purring makes humans react.
Walking slowly, approaching you slowly, and blinking slowly – cats seem to think the slower they are, the more we understand what they’re thinking. And, there’s a chance they’re on to something considering we do get the message every time they’re doing that. After all, they’re trying to redeem themselves.
8. She’s pawing at you
Pawing’s similar to rubbing and headbutting. When your cat starts pawing at you after spilling your favorite perfume on the floor or scratching the furniture, know that she’s trying to say she’s sorry by spreading her scent on you. We know that’s weird, but that’s how cats are!
9. She hops on your lap
Cats know when they’ve done something wrong because we change our demeanor, right?
We might get annoyed, go to the other room, or even start yelling while we’re picking up the pieces or cleaning the mess they’ve made. When your cat hops on your lap afterward, she’s saying “I know I messed up, I’m sorry!”
10. She snuggles with you
We can’t forget about the snuggles, of course. When your fluffy friend starts snuggling with you or trying to get on top of you, she’s probably trying to apologize.