<iframe src="https://www.googletagmanager.com/ns.html?id=GTM-PK9D66" height="0" width="0" style="display:none;visibility:hidden" title="gtm-frame"></iframe>Why do cats purr? | Agria Pet Insurance
03330 30 10 00
Get a quote
My AccountGet a quote
Get a quote

Back to Guides and advice

Why do cats purr

Have you ever wondered why your cat purrs and what it means?

Purring is the sweet and soft vibrating noise of a cat. It comes from the cat’s larynx, which surrounds its vocal chords. As a cat purrs, part of its larynx is restricted and vibrates the surrounding air, creating a purring sound.

Purring is the most common sound cats make. Some purr a little, some purr a lot - for some purring is a delicate little sound and for others, you can hear it in the next room! Normally, we humans think cats make this sound when they are happy and relaxed. But, there are also other reasons why cats purr.

It starts when they are kittens

When your cat was a tiny kitten, they would have started to purr when they were just a few days old. On returning to the den, their mother would purr to quietly let them know that she was home and that all was well, without alerting predators. The kittens purr back in return, helping mum to find them and letting her know they are feeling okay. It also helps the two of them to build a strong bond. From an early age, purring is something your cat does to signify their comfort and as a way to communicate.

Does purring mean my cat is happy? 

We assume purring is the noise cats make when they are happy and calm. If their eyes are soft and their tail is relaxed while enjoying a stroke or a cuddle, this is probably the case.

Time for tea

Cat’s purr when they are ready for their dinner, sometimes accompanied by a mewing noise. If you hear this purring/ mewing combination, it might be time to get them a bowl of food!

Feeling pain

Sometimes, when cats are uncomfortable or in pain, they can purr as a way of soothing and comforting themselves. Think of how a child may suck their thumb if they feel unwell. Cats do the same by purring.

Getting better

When cats injure themselves after being out on their adventures, it is believed purring can help speed up the healing process. The vibrations that come from purring can help to ease breathing and decrease swelling and pain. It also helps heal wounds and repair muscle injuries.

It’s true to say, we can’t be entirely sure why cats purr. It appears to depend on the cat and the situation they find themselves in. Compared to studies on dogs, currently, very little is known about feline psychology and behaviour. But, hopefully, this will change into the future as more studies are undertaken into our fabulous felines so we can learn more about how they see the world.

Previous article

Keeping in touch with your clients post GDPR

Next article

Can pets get SAD

Related guides and advice

Follow us

  • Cookie policy
  • Privacy Policy
  • UK tax policy
  • Terms and conditions
  • Modern slavery statement

For UK customers:
Agria Pet Insurance Ltd is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority, Financial Services Register Number 496160. Agria Pet Insurance Ltd is registered and incorporated in England and Wales with registered number 04258783. Registered office: First Floor, Blue Leanie, Walton Street, Aylesbury, Buckinghamshire, HP21 7QW. Agria insurance policies are underwritten by Agria Försäkring who is authorised and regulated by the Prudential Regulatory Authority and Financial Conduct Authority.

For Jersey customers:
Agria Pet Insurance Ltd is regulated by the Jersey Financial Services Commission (JFSC). Ref: 0001498. Registered office: As detailed above.

For Guernsey customers:
Clegg Gifford Channel Islands Limited is licensed by the Guernsey Financial Services Commission. Ref: 2722221. Registered office: Admiral House, Place Du Commerce, St Peter Port, Guernsey GY1 2AT.

© 2024 Agria Pet Insurance Ltd. All Rights Reserved.