Why do cats purr?

United States
January 20, 2009 10:45am CST
What makes our feline companions purr like a little motorboat? My cats usually purr after a treat. They'll come get all snuggly with me and lay right in my lap, purring like they don't have a care in the world. If I pet them, they purr even louder. What are all those meows about? My fattest cat will let his voice be heard when he's hungry or when "mom" has slacked off on litter duty. My other cat meows when he wants to go outside. When do your cats purr the most? When do they meow?
2 people like this
3 responses
@mareem (147)
• United States
22 Jan 09
Although we mostly notice our cats purring when they are content, they often purr during times of duress, as well. Studies have shown the sound frequency of a cat's purr can actually stimulate healing and bone growth! The only time one my cats meow is when I haven't refilled their food or water bowls immediately when they have become empty. My other cat is a "talker" and meows all the time. I really think he just likes to hear himself. *G*
2 people like this
• United States
22 Jan 09
Hi there! I had no idea that purring stimulates bone growth? My goodness, it looks like these kitties would be giants by now! ha ha And you're right about purring at other times besides being happy. I read somewhere that cats will purr when they are hurt. I don't understand this but I've always associated purring with happiness. Thanks for your response!
1 person likes this
• Philippines
20 Jan 09
a purring cat is happy and contented how and where it is. it is trying to tell the master that it has nothing that it can ask for the time being. the meows is the cat's way of communicating with others. when my cat meows as it goes on around my feet, it is asking for some food. when it meows as it fearsomeless looks out through the door, most probably there is a dog out there. when the cat meows while holding up its front paw, there is a rat nearby and it is considering about running after the rat. things like that, by this time, after having been raising cats for a long while, it has become a lot easier to understand what their meows are meant to convey.
• United States
20 Jan 09
Sounds like a cat house! haha...my cats have done all those things. I have one cat that can sing the blues. I'm not kidding! He even serenaded my neighbor's female cat! Funniest thing! Thanks for the response!
1 person likes this
@pergammano (7755)
• Canada
20 Jan 09
I think my cat has a perpetual "purr" motor! He, at 11...is quite the outdoor cat, and does the neighborhood patrol everymorning..before dawn! Comes in the "doggie" door...dines...and the motor begins! I know he is happy, contented when he does that, but some mornings, I will still be asleep, so he will curl around my head...with motor running....Nicer to wake up to, than an alarm! Cheers!
1 person likes this
• United States
20 Jan 09
Speaking of doggie door, I've seen where a baby deer, a raccoon and a skunk have come through those doggie doors! I have one but to the outside world. I live in the woods so it's untelling what creatures might slither in! I do have one that leads to the basement. That's pretty much their territory if you know what I mean! lol thanks for the response!
1 person likes this
• Canada
21 Jan 09
My "doggie" door..leads to the great outdoors! And I do live in a very rural setting..I have 3 acres, half wooded, and my neighbours, the same! I have had nocturnal visits from baby racoons & feral cats, but I guess they need to eat & some shelter, too! In the spring, summer & fall, I sleep with all my doors wide open, so do get many "night prowler" visitors...but, hey, I opted to live in the country....and the bonus is, I never have to lock a door, so these little intruders are all part of the lifestyle that I opted for! There are many feral cats in my area, I have a broken window in my greenhouse, they go thru the window & sleep there! I originally was going to repair it...but choose not to, as they need a port in the storm, too! Cheers!
1 person likes this
• United States
22 Jan 09
My goodness! I don't know if I could handle all that wildlife in my house! I love animals but I don't want them in my house! haah! moochers! gotta love em. There's things I haven't fixed either so my cats could play. It's all in good fun! I have fallen asleep with the basement door open. Talk about paranoid! I cleaned every square inch to make sure no snakes had slithered in. Talk about a heart attack! Thanks for the response!
1 person likes this