Monday, April 14, 2008

Tuesdays Tattles - How to Communicate Wif Us

We found dis information about how to communicate wif us kitties and took da liberty of shortening some of it and we made some SIDE COMMENTS IN YELLOW. I'm sure yoo will all want to add in some ofur comments too:

How to Communicate With Your Cat
from wikiHow - The How to Manual That You Can Edit

Scientists have discovered that cats have developed an elaborate communication system with hundreds of vocalizations to tell humans what they want. (YOO GOT DAT RIGHT WIKI GUY). They know that we are in charge (WRONG), so it makes sense for the cat to learn to communicate vocally, and to make sure that we understand what they are saying. Cats can also learn to understand what we want them to do by our repetition of words or actions in a consistent manner (YEAH - SHINE DAT LASER LIGHT OFUR HERE HUMAN) In this way, we are able to communicate with cats in a dialogue that takes time and effort to develop but is very rewarding for both. (YES - WE HAVE OWR OWN REWARD SYSTEM AND IT INVOLVES TREATS - LOTS OF DEM).


Remember that vocalizing is generally not your cat's preferred mode of communication. (REALLY? TELL DAT TO MAX'S or da MEEZER'S HUMANs!). A cat's "first language" consists of a complex system of scent (WE GOT GOOD SNIFFERS - BETTER'N DOGS), facial expression, complex body language, and touch whereas we humans communicate primarily through sound. Cats soon realize that we don't understand the non-verbal signals they send to each other, so they vocalize in an attempt to communicate in our language. By observing which sounds elicit which actions from us, a cat is always learning how to make requests (or demands) (WELL DEY FINALLY GOT SOMEFIN RIGHT - WE DO DEMAND WHAT WE WANT WHEN WE WANT IT).
  1. Listen to your cat. If you watch what your cat is doing when it meows, you may learn to distinguish which meows are associated with which requests (or protests) and eventually know the difference between a "let me out" demand and a "give me food" demand by sound alone. (I FINKS WE HAF DAT ONE DOWN PRETTY GOOD) Each cat is different and may have its own variations, but some common meows can include:
    • Short meow - standard greeting.
    • Multiple meows - excited greeting.
    • Mid-pitch meow - plea for something.
    • Drawn-out mrrroooow - a demand for something.
    • Low pitch MRRRooooowww - a complaint
    • High-pitch RRRROWW! - anger or pain.
    • Chatter (rapid teeth-chattering jaw movements) - excitement, frustration (e.g. when prey is out of reach or escapes)
    • Chirrup (Also called "chirring", a cross between a meow and a purr with rising inflection) - friendly greeting sound, often used by a mother cat to call to her kittens.

  2. Watch your cat. Since cats are more "fluent" in body language, certain gestures will accompany vocalizations to reinforce their message. (ESPESHULLY WHEN WE FLASH DEM DA SPOT THIRTEEN -- GASP?! WHO DID DAT?) WE DON'T DO DAT RIGHT?)
    • tail straight up - happy
    • tail twitching - excited or anxious
    • slowly blinking eyes - affection, equivalent of "blowing a kiss"
      • sustained eye contact is interpreted as being assertive or even aggressive and makes cats uncomfortable; slow blinking communicates trust

    • wet nose "kiss" - an affectionate gesture when the cat taps its wet nose to you
    • ears back - alarmed
    • rubbing head, flank and tail against a person or animal - greeting ritual
    • head-butting - friendliness, affection (WE DO DAT LOTS IN DA CAT BLOGOSPHERE)
    • face sniffing - confirming identity (BUTT SNIFFING -- DON'T FORGET BUTT SNIFFING)
    • ears back and flattened - fearful and anxious
    • licks you - this is the ULTIMATE sign of affection. If your cat licks you, your cat considers you to be a part of his/her family, like a mother cleaning her kittens. If you push your cat away when he/she licks you, they will feel hurt and confused. Your kitty loves you!

  3. Talk back. As mentioned earlier, cats are always learning how to communicate with us; the more we communicate with them, the faster they'll learn. (YEAH YEAH - WE ALREADY GOT DAT ONE DOWN PAT)
    • Use the word shower consistently each time you are ready to take one, and eventually your cat may beat you to the bathroom and might even curl up in the sink to wait for you. (SINCE WHEN? -- WATER IS NOT ONE OF OWR FAVRIT FINGS) (WE DO KNOW PLENTY OF CATS DAT DO LIKE TO drink FROM DA SINKIE).
    • If you blink slowly when making eye contact with your cat, they will usually respond by coming over to be petted, as it is a very non-threatening gesture.

  4. Be consistent. For example, a cat often "asks" before invading another's space and a common blunder many pet owners make is to say "no" but pet the cat at the same time. This is very confusing to the cat. Instead, a very quick "no" combined with gently but firmly pushing the cat away from you, without showing affection, will let the cat know that their presence is not desired at this time. (WHO ARE DESE PEOPLE??? -- WE WILL ALWAYS COME BACK FOR MORE AN WE ARE NEFUR CONFUSED). HRMFFF. Most cats will try 2-3 times to invade a person's space, often from different directions. Be patient when saying "no" to them.
    • You can also develop a "command tone" to use with your cat when they are doing something seriously wrong. Use a voice that comes naturally to you, that you can replicate easily, but that is also distinct from your everyday talking voice. (AN DEN WE WILL GET BACK AT DEM AT AN APPROPRIATE TIME IN DA MIDDLE OF DA NIGHT WIF OWR OWN STYLE OF COMMUNICATION).
    • Another easy "no" command that cats all understand is a quick, sharp, hiss or "spit" sound as is made by their own kind when they themselves say "no". (GASP! I DON'T FINKS SO!)


Treat your cat with love and respect (WE ALREADY KNOWS DIS AND DA HUMANS ALREADY KNOW DIS OR WE WILL POOP ON DARE HEADS!) and they will become a very happy and loving companion and friend. Talk to them softly and watch how they listen. They might respond with a meow or other sound.
  • With patience cats can be trained to respond to commands, much the same as dogs. (BWHAHAHAHAHAHAAHAHAHAHAHA) You can even teach your cat to shake your hand. (WELL - YES WE DO KNOW DAT ONE COZ WE DO KNOW HOW TO GIF DA HIGH FIVE -- BUT DAT'S FOR TREATS DANG IT!)
  • Siamese & Maine Coon cats have been observed to be especially "talkative", while long-haired cats tend to be on the quieter side. But of course, there are always exceptions! (YOO GOTS DAT RIGHT FINALLY!)


Article provided by wikiHow, (WIF EDITS BY BEAU BEAU & ANGIE) a collaborative writing project to build the world's largest, highest quality how-to manual. Please edit this article and find author credits at the original wikiHow article on How to Communicate With Your Cat. All content on wikiHow can be shared under a Creative Commons license.


  1. ::SIGH:: mommy teached me how to sit up and beg for treats like a woofie, and I LISTENED TO HER. i'm so ashamed. - Miles

    Miles constantly meezes and Mommy, Billy is just learning all of this - he has learned that when he uses HIS voice, mommy comes running to see what's wrong. she used to do this with me, but then she figured out that I was just calling her to see her come running and she stopped. Now she says that if I want to see her, I can come to her. - Sammy

  2. I talk to Momma all the time. She understands and pays furry close attenshun to me. She also knoos when I give her dah stare down I mean TREATS RIGHT now. I telefath my foughts to her and she gits it. IT'S wunderfull!

    Dis wuz a furry gud arteecule...


  3. We are both very vocal cats. We talk ALL the time. We also have many different meows. We have one when we want food, one when we want attention, one when we're playing, one when we're using the litterbox, etc. We think that article is very silly in some places.

  4. That is a very informative article. Thank you for sharing it with us. Momma's going to tell Daddy that when we're licking him, he should just sit there and take it. hee hee


  5. You got it wight Beau Beau and Angie!

  6. Beau Bea and Angie, thanks for adding some insight to that article. I do the "Chatter" whenever I see birds at the window.

  7. Anonymous2:34 PM

    Mom had dogs for more than 30 years before we came and she believes in the Pack Mentality (such as Cesar Millan, the Dog Whisperer). Mom is always the Alpha in the pack. The most important rule of thumb (or paw!) is consistancy. It really does work!

    We understand many words she uses. Our favorite is "Who wants some" and we will go running down the hall, into the bedroom and wait at the bottom of our condo for Temptations. We have more, but you get the idea.

    P.S. We just let Mom think she is the Alpha Cat! ;=)

  8. This could be a valuable teaching aide for kittens, especially with your fine editing!

  9. This is very helpful.
    I am very demanding and when I want something they better spring to action.
    I am the boss around here, always have been.
    purrrs and licks too

  10. I love your edits!

    I talk to my mommy all of the time. ALL OF THE TIME. And if she doesn't look like she's listening, I whap her.

  11. That wuz interesting, speshully your edits.I talk to mum all the time, but Eric only has a tiny meow, and only talks when he has sumfing impawtunt to say. We can unnerstand what mum sez to us. If she sez "Who wants to go walkies" We run out the door and wait at the garden gate furr her. When she sez "Teatime boys" We go and sit by the cupboard door where our food is kept.

  12. MEW!!! BWAHAHAHAHA! Exactly!

  13. Great post - SS enjoyed that immensely and I kept saying I told you so. I don't chatter but i love licking SS's hand when she pats me and gives me scritchies.

  14. Mommy feels real good 'cause she said she knew most of that stuff. And she knows that all of your comments were very, very true!

  15. Yeah, it took awhile but we finally gots our beans partially trained.

  16. kimiko-i unnerstands mommees whens she says down.

    kintro-i ams lernin the word "no" wif an open hand betweens me ans mommees. it mus be workin cuz she thinks i am figurin it out.

    yuki-i do what i want when i want. if it donts go my way thens i hiss ans growl. mommees calls me ans grumpy old itch. i hafs nefer seen ans grumpy old itch. i tinks it is a secret password or sumfin.

    we finks yu shood updates that wiki thing so it is 100% true. nofin less.


  17. chair dancin', like on the bill cosby show? yeah, mommie needs to revamp the music alittle so no one gits board

  18. I enjoyed the article, but I enjoyed your edits more. Thanks for the fun.

  19. Dis waz furry edy-you-vacational. I tink dis discourse mustee be read by evfurry bean & cat.
    & den, when dey iz ready to leavez da class, you mustee stop by & haz a niptini oevfur at my place!

  20. That was very very interesting. My beans know just what I'm saying to them all the time (feed me)!

  21. I make the chirrup sound all the time! I diddint kno thare wuz a name fur it. Very edyookayshunul. Mommy has bin well traynd by our Fursisters in Memry to kno whut we want. I think I'll keep her.