Why Do Cats Growl But Still Want to Be Petted

Why Do Cats Growl But Still Want to Be Petted?

Cats are fascinating creatures capable of strange behaviors that we humans cannot understand. One commonly observed action is a cat growling, but still wanting to be petted. It can be confusing for cat owners, leaving them to wonder whether their cat is angry or simply seeking attention.

In this post, we will explore the reasons behind why cats growl but still want to be petted.

Cats Use Growling as a Defense Mechanism

Growling is a significant component of a cat’s defensive behavior. When a cat feels threatened or frightened, they may growl to intimidate the perceived threat. They may also hiss, arch their backs, and puff up their fur to protect themselves. However, this behavior doesn’t mean your cat is going to attack you. Your cat can associate you with safety and security and may growl at strangers instead.

Cats Love Attention

Cats love to be pampered and adore attention from their owners. Their love for attention is mostly the reason why they still want to be petted despite growling. They want to associate the feeling of being touched and cared for with a state of comfort and safety they experience with their owner. In fact, your cat may also bunt or touch their head to you, which is a sign of trust, comfort, and affection.

Communication Through Growling

Cats use growling to communicate, but unlike humans, they don’t verbalize their emotions. Growling is another way they give us a glimpse into their emotional state of mind, and they may be indicating extremes of happiness or fear through growling. Once you’ve been with your cat for a while, you can get a better understanding of what they are trying to tell you with their growls.

Health Issues

Another reason why cats growl could be due to an underlying medical issue. You should focus on your cat’s physical state, mood, and behavior to gain deeper insights into their health problems. If your cat becomes grumpy, aggressive, and easily irritated during their petting routine, it’s possible they are in pain or discomfort.

It’s Just How They Are

Lastly, sometimes, cats growl because that’s just how they are. Not all cats are the same, and some are less tolerant of petting and handling than others. Some cats are more vocal and expressive about their discomfort, and it’s up to the human to understand and respect their boundaries.


Cats are mysterious creatures, and growling may seem like a negative behavior, especially if you’re new to cat ownership. It’s natural to be confused by a cat’s growling behavior, but we hope that this blog helped you understand why cats growl but still want to be petted. A cat’s behavior can be linked with their unique personalities, their past experiences, and their emotional state.

To deepen your bond with your cat, it is essential to learn to understand their different behaviors and respect their boundaries while creating an enjoyable and cozy environment for your feline friend.

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