Cats are fascinating creatures with a lot to say, especially with their tails. Cats use their tails to communicate their emotions the same way a human might use their facial expressions. Therefore, if you want to get to know your feline friend better, you need to know about cat tail meanings. Determining whether a tail position means fear or happiness will help you unlock your cat’s brain; you can then figure out what your cat needs.
Today we’re looking at cat tail meanings, so you can build a more fulfilling and trusting bond with your cat.
Understanding Your Cat’s Tail: The Basics
The feline body is remarkable. Not only do cats have incredible flexibility, they have tails that can move a number of ways. The tail is an extension of a cat’s spine. Where the human spine ends with the pelvis, the cat (and all tailed creatures) have a spine that continues on for another 18 to 23 vertebrae or bones in length.
Saviez-vous que les chats mâles ont une queue plus longue que les femelles? The average male tail is 11 inches (28 cm), while the female’s reaches 10 in (25 cm). However, there are larger breeds, like the Coon Maine, qui peut avoir une longue queue de 16 pouces ! Il existe également des queues de formes différentes. Perses ont des queues de panache plus épaisses, tandis que les chats à poils courts ont souvent des queues plus fines et plus étroites.
La queue elle-même est composée de fourrure, de peau, de muscles, de vaisseaux sanguins et de tissu conjonctif. Une abondance de nerfs donne aux chats un contrôle unique sur leur queue, de sorte qu'ils peuvent bouger leur queue dans de nombreuses directions ou faire de petits ou grands mouvements. C'est pourquoi vous verrez la queue fouetter comme un serpent à certains moments, puis la regarder aller presque encore à d'autres moments.
Positions de la queue de chat et ce qu'elles signifient
What can your cat’s tail tell you? So, so much! Cat tail meanings are vast, but here are some of the most common positions you’ll see, as well as what they mean:
What does it mean when a cat holds its tail vertically? From an anatomical standpoint, when a cat does this, they are displaying their backside, where there are glands. By exposing this region, they’re inviting other cats to take a whiff, which is a type of friendly social correspondence opening up friendship.
For humans, you can read this tail-held-high position as your cat saying, “I’m your friend.” Feel free to reach out and give any cat with its tail standing straight up some love.
2. Le point d'interrogation recourbé
One of the most asked about cat’s tail signals is the question mark. This is when the cat has their tail standing straight up but with a little (or large) hook on the end, which looks like “?” to many. Seeing this is a good sign. It means two things: your cat is in a good mood and wants to be your friend. If your cat sees you and begins to approach with their tail in a question mark position, consider it an invitation to give them a pet.
3. Enroulé autour du corps
Si votre chat a la queue bien enroulée autour du corps pendant qu'il est allongé, cela peut signifier qu'il ne se sent pas bien ou qu'il a mal. Observez attentivement votre ami pour tout autre signes de maladie. If your cat doesn’t appear sick, take it as a sign of contentment.
4. Enroulé autour de vous ou d'un autre animal de compagnie
Cats will loosely wrap their tail around your leg or other pets as a way of greeting their friends. Think of this gesture as the equivalent of shaking someone’s hand. If a cat does this to you, consider it behavior displaying their willingness to interact.
Biologically speaking, a cat’s tail has scent glands. Cats use this motion to share their scent with another creature.
5. Une queue lâche et agitée
Qu'est-ce que ça veut dire quand un chat remue la queue? The cat tail meaning for this motion is one of ambivalence. Your cat doesn’t know what to do about a situation and is calculating their options. This is different from tail lashing or whipping, which means a high level of emotion or anger.
6. Le film rapide
A flicking tail can mean a few things. First, your cat is irritated. When you mess around with your feline friend for too long and they’re getting agitated, you might notice that their tail flicks about angrily. This is a warning before they go in for a scratch or bite.
The second meaning is fascination. Look around the environment for something that may have your cat’s attention. Sometimes, the quick flick means they’re excited by something they see, like a toy or another cat. Other times, it could mean there is an unfriendly cat wandering through the yard.
7. Queue tenue droite en arrière
Is your cat laying on the ground with their tail held back behind them? It means they are stalking prey and decreasing the size of their profile. By hiding their tail, the prey won’t be able to see them as well.
8. Queue repliée
Une queue repliée est souvent un signe de colère, de maladie ou de mécontentement. Assurez-vous qu'il n'y a rien de mal physiquement avec votre chat. Ils peuvent également être contrariés par l'environnement ou un autre chat.
9. Queue gonflée
Un dos arqué et une queue gonflée sont un signe clair que votre chat est effrayé ou surpris par quelque chose qu'il perçoit comme effrayant. Les chats peuvent dresser leurs poils sur leur tête (appelée piloérection) comme mécanisme de défense qui les rend plus gros et plus menaçants.
Should your cat do this, it is a clear sign that they don’t want to be bothered. Avoid interacting with your cat when they are clearly startled. Sometimes, cats will play by doing this as well. They will arch their back, crabwalk sideways, and puff their tails. Be sure to look for context before engaging with a cat you think might be playing. If there are other signs of aggression, such as growling or crouching, it’s best to leave them alone.
Your Cat’s Tail Language
One of the things you need to do when decoding cat tail meanings is look for context. Any changes to the environment or intrusions could make a cat act strangely. Furthermore, if your cat has been feeling unwell or perceives a new stressor, their tails will show their frustration. Always be on the lookout for things that will impact your cat’s mood. If it doesn’t help your cat, remove it!
Queues de chat dans le cadre de la communication féline - Réflexions finales
Cats use their tails to communicate in a noticeable way. While some motions may be subtle, most cat tail meanings are easy to decode when you know what to look for. By reading less into your cat’s expressions and more into the way they hold their tails, you can better your relationship with your pet so they live a happier, healthier life.
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