I spend a lot of time with my kitty, but a few weeks ago she suddenly started doing something odd. I’d be sitting in my living room, watching my favorite TV show, and she’d just come up to me and yawn a few times. So why does my cat yawn at me all of a sudden? Am I really that boring?
I asked my friends if their cats do the same, and they said they’ve also noticed it a few times but they don’t know the reason behind it. Since I hate unsolved mysteries, I knew I had to find all the possible answers to this question. My peaceful sleep depended on it.
Of course, I didn’t wait long before I started digging for answers. And after a few phone calls, a trip to the vet, and lots of articles, I finally gathered all the most common reasons my cat yawns at me.
Then I figured my friends also deserve to know these answers, so I decided to write this article to help them and all other people who are confused by the same thing. Want to see what I’ve found out? Right, let’s dive in!
Why does my cat yawn at me?
Before we start, I need to tell you that there are many possible answers to why your cat would yawn at you, and I’ve made a list of the most common ones. Are you ready to find out whether you’re really boring or not? I know it’s stressful, so spoiler alert, that doesn’t come into play at all.
Some reasons are more likely than others, but I wanted you to have all the info you might need so you can finally stop overthinking this. So I won’t keep you waiting any longer. Enjoy!
1) She’s tired
After a long day of playing with toys, running around, and watching birds through the window, as you would expect, your kitto will be immensely tired.
When animals (including humans) are tired, they take shorter breaths. That means they breathe slower and don’t take in as much air as usual. Less air in their lungs means the body is taking in less oxygen, and that is not exactly a good thing.
Your cat’s brain will want to signal that to her, but to you too. It will do so by making her yawn, thereby grabbing some extra oxygen from the air. A couple of yawns won’t alleviate the tiredness, but will help her body by adding much-needed oxygen into her blood.
2) She’s bored
Evidence also suggests that boredom is one of the most common stimuli of yawns in mammals, and our feline friends are no exception.
Boredom occurs when your cat’s attention isn’t stimulated in any way, so her inner body systems get drowsy. If this is why your cat is yawning, you can stop it by finding a way to stimulate her.
Maybe you haven’t given your cat enough toys or attention. Maybe you haven’t changed her environment in a long time. Or perhaps it’s time to get her a feline friend who she can play with around the house. There are plenty of solutions to this problem – it’s up to you to figure out which one suits you the best.
3) Your cat is trying to copy your behavior
Let’s be honest, yawning is a highly contagious action. We have all been in a situation in which we started to yawn because we saw someone else do it. Your kitty friend is the same – if she sees you yawning, she will catch on.
The exact reasons for this behavior in cats are unknown, but it’s possible that they do it to be more like you. They look at you as a parent figure and aspire to closely resemble you. So if you see your kitty yawning, try to remember if you yawned in front of her before that.
4) She wants your attention
Cats are attention seekers, there’s no denying that. They will always find a way to get what they want, and that means that sometimes they have to find an alternative to the standard attention-seeking behavior like meowing or pawing your arm or leg.
One such alternative is yawning.
If you’re not giving them enough attention, they want you to know they aren’t entertained. Or if they’re hungry, they want to show you they need some extra energy boost so they can go on with their day.
And finally, if they want to sleep next to you, they will definitely yawn to remind you that you need to leave some extra space for them.
5) She feels safe around you
Research has shown that when you feel sleepy around someone, it just might be an indication that you feel comfortable and safe with that person. That can be even more applicable to cats. It’s because their wild instincts are even more prominent than humans’.
Cats are almost always on high alert because their ancestral behavior had to be like that. They always had to look out for potential dangers in the wild. So if your cat is yawning next to you, think of it as a good thing. It means you managed to make her feel so safe that she forgot about her innate instincts.
6) It’s just a part of her waking-up routine
Even though yawning is mostly connected to feeling tired, I’m sure you sometimes yawn just when you wake up. And I don’t think you’re more tired after sleeping for a bit than you were before.
So we can say that it’s some kind of a waking-up routine. Maybe it’s a way of getting some more oxygen so we can start being productive sooner.
Since cats are sometimes very similar to us, it’s also possible that their yawning is also just their way of waking up.
7) It’s just a coincidence
You have to admit that sometimes we spend a lot of time overthinking about something, but at the end of the day, we realize that it was actually completely unnecessary. You noticed that your cat is yawning at you, so what?
What if it’s actually a coincidence? She was just yawning because she was tired and you happened to be there. It’s not that she was literally waiting for you to sit in front of her so she can send you some kind of secret message.
So always keep in mind that sometimes the answer is as simple as it can get, with zero hidden meaning behind her out-of-the-ordinary behavior. It might all be just a coincidence.
Why does my cat yawn at me when I talk to her?
If your cat yawns at you when you’re talking to her, then it probably means she was a bit irritated or even agitated. But why does that happen?
Let’s say she was peacefully sleeping in her fluffy bed, dreaming about the tastiest meal or her first love. And then all of a sudden, someone turned on the light and she was yanked out of her dreamland. That “someone” was obviously you and you started talking to her as soon as you saw her cute little face.
If this happened then you probably saw your cat look and yawn at you. That’s her way of telling you she’s very disappointed in how you treated her and not happy you didn’t respect her nap time. Since she can’t really talk to you about this, she will just do this powerful move.
Wild cats do this a lot with other animals. That’s because they need to tell any possible invader that he’s entered their territory and not welcome there. When felines yawn, they flash their sharp teeth, which can scare off potential predators.
And then if they don’t get scared, a cat will start to snarl or hiss in order to appear even scarier. So when it comes to a conflict between a cat and someone else, yawning is usually the first step.
So, if you interrupt her while she was doing something, you can definitely expect her to yawn at you too. She knows you’re not a scary predator, but she will need to teach you a lesson anyways.
Why does she yawn when I rub her nose?
Have you noticed that your cat yawns when you rub her nose? If yes, then this part should be very interesting to you.
The reason she yawns when you rub her nose is actually a combination of two things. The first one is that she enjoys lying down and having her nose rubbed by you. And the second reason is that your fingers smell like her and that makes her feel so good.
For some reason, cats adore smelling their own scent. And I’m not just talking about the places they’ve marked as their territory. They love when you smell like them. It’s because it means you’re theirs and you will always be there. You will protect them and keep them safe from every possible threat.
But those are still not the only reasons she enjoys it. As I’ve already mentioned, cats get scared easily, and are always afraid there’s someone out there planning to attack them. But when the whole house is full of their scent, it makes them feel safer and they aren’t as anxious as their wild cousins would be out in nature.
That said, what does that have to do with yawning? Well, I hope you remember that cats yawn when they are feeling relaxed and happy. Why? Because this is definitely one of those situations.
Why does my cat yawn when I want to pet her?
“Why does my cat yawn at me whenever I pet her?”
Well, it’s probably because she wants you to know how nice she feels around you. Kitties get stressed and anxious easily. But you are their protector, so they always feel relaxed and comfortable when you’re somewhere near them.
So when your cat is sleepy but isn’t going to bed, she will likely approach you so the two of you can cuddle. And while you’re enjoying your time together, you can easily expect to see her yawn. It’s just because she’s feeling warm and secure, and she’s happy she has someone like you in her life.
Most people believe that felines are highly independent animals, but it’s not really true when it comes to those who’ve spent most of their life indoors. Therefore if you and your kitty are roommates ever since she was just a little kitten, then you need to know she always needs your attention.
Use that fact to make her the happiest cat in the whole world. Whenever you have some free time, pick her up and do something together. You can play, cuddle, or even go to sleep. And I promise you, she’ll feel like she’s on top of the world. And you’ll also get to see her cute yawns often!
Why does my cat yawn at me when I look at her?
And the final thing you need to know about “Why does my cat yawn at me?” is here. It’s about her yawing that happens when you simply just look at her.
It mostly happens when you take a quick look at her but she wants more attention. So if she’s combining her yawns with hissing, meowing, or any other noise, it’s probably because she wants you to pay more attention to her.
If she only yawns once or twice a day, it probably just means she’s sleepy. There’s no need to read anything further into it. But if it happens often when you look at her, you can be almost certain that it’s only because she wants your attention or she even misses you.
In that case, I suggest you play with her a bit as that will make both of you happier. You will relax a bit and she will get to enjoy spending time with her favorite person in the world.
Just like looking or talking to her is your way of communicating, her yawning could be too. She can’t really come to you and say, “Hey, you’re my dearest human in the world, and I’d really like to cuddle with you if that’s pawsible.” So she will need to figure out some other way to explain her wants and needs.
Congrats! You now know all the most common answers to “Why does my cat yawn at me?” I hope you enjoyed this quick lesson as much as I did. And now you also know there’s no need to worry about being as dull as dishwater. Your kitty still thinks you’re interesting and fun to be around!