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What's with the tail?

post #1 of 12
Thread Starter 
A friend of mine has two cats; a male and a female. They are left home alone quite a bit and she keeps them in the basement of her condo with all the comforts of home. The few times I have seen the cats, they prance around and act like normal cats but one thing I find strange is that both of their tails are always straight up in the air. I have had cats around and have never noticed this on any of my cats. What could this mean (if anything). She did get both of them when they were kittens from a business that takes in ferals.
post #2 of 12
Hi Karen and welcome to the forums!

The cats sound just fine to me. To the best of my knowledge, erect tails, held high indicate that the cats are happy and alert. Most cats usually greet their owners with their tails held high. This is the way that kittens greet their mom.

I would be worried if the cats were flicking their tails from side to side, because that means the cat is agitated.

what do your cats do with their tail?
post #3 of 12
Thread Starter 
Hi Anne and thanks for the reply. My current cat does raise her tail when I give her a treat or feed her but most of the time her tail looks like a sideways "C". I am glad that my friends cats are very sure of themselves, happy and alert.
post #4 of 12
I didn't know that about the cats raising their tails when they greet their owners...I will have to look for that next time I come home!! ( Oh I just Love the info I get on here! )
post #5 of 12
I just bought a book called "PetSpeak" by the Editors of "Pets Part of the Family" which talks about cat/dog languages. The backwards "C" or "U-shaped" tail supposedly means "Play with Me" and the high and quivering tail means "I love you". I hope this helps...
post #6 of 12
Thank you for that info! I will have to look for those cat tail sign languages now!
post #7 of 12
Also, Thank you for joining us Doreen! Glad to have you on the forums!
post #8 of 12
I have a new cat, which was a stray during the summer. She has taken to indoor living very well, not showing singns of wanting out at all. But except for when she greets us when we come in, or she first approaches for a pet, her tail is in continuous motion. It's always twitching, even when she sleeps. I had noticed it when she was a stray before we took her in.

Why is her tail always going? Is it from the months she spent as a stray? What could be the chances of it ever stopping?
post #9 of 12
It is quite funny that we are talking about tails.
I will look for the upright tail when we I get home
this evening. My cat's tail actually goes straight
up and flares out. What I mean is that her tail hair
sticks out. Does anyone know what that would mean?
This usually occurs when she is in her playful mood or has
been scared by something.
post #10 of 12
Sounds like Casey is getting excited when she sees you....

Helga, I just noticed your question (thanks Heather for "bumping" the thread!). I think the twitching tail indicates she's a bit timid and insecure. It's hard to tell whether it's a temporary thing that will change as she gains confidence in your home. Maybe she's just timid by nature and will always be a little bit apprehensive.

I'd love to hear how she's doing.
post #11 of 12
It's been a few weeks now, and the tail has stopped twitching. She seems to be settling down, and is much calmer, but also much more playful. She still has the tail going during play, and a bit when sleeping, but nowhere near what it was before.
post #12 of 12
Great news! I'm so glad she's settling down.

Thanks so much for the update.
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