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Why do cats try to groom their owners?

post #1 of 17
Thread Starter 
Hi All,



This may be a tired old question. But why is it that my cat always tries to lick and groom me. Is it because it is showing me that it loves me? Or it thinks I am ugly?

I am sure this happens with other owners, I was just wondering if anyone knows why.
post #2 of 17
They love you! Mine sit by the tub and look at me like I do not know how to bathe properly, so they help me stay clean.
post #3 of 17
Cats groom their caregivers for many reasons ... affection is certainly one of them, but they could also be trying to engage you in play. They may be marking you with their scent as well, or they could simply be enjoying the taste/texture of your skin.
post #4 of 17
mine are partial to creams with aha's
post #5 of 17
Bonnie loves to groom my hair after I have washed it. And she loves the smell of my soap and will rub all over me!
post #6 of 17
my roomates cat is a licker. she loves to sit on his lap and lick him untill his skin get iritated and he has to move so that the cat will pick a new place to lick.
post #7 of 17
Sometimes I think it is because they love us. Animals who are bonded will groom each other, so it makes sense that they would groom their humans, too. My horse sometimes tries to groom me while I brush her, my mom's dogs try to do the same...and of course my kitties do it. If you sit down next to one of them while they're grooming, they will reach right over and start grooming you.

But sometimes they might just be after our sweat or lotion or perfume. lol
Zoe is a licker, and she especially likes to lick my legs right after I have shaved. She also likes the Bath & Body Works lotion I use...it must taste good, because she will go to town licking my arms, legs and anywhere she can get to that I've lotioned after a bath.
Both of my kitties like to lick sweat...I think they like the salt. Kinda gross, IMO. hehe
post #8 of 17
I do not know, but I have one who loves chewing my hair and grooming my eyelashes. Gives an interesting jump-start to a lot of my mornings.
post #9 of 17
Could it be one of those dominance things? It's been said here that cats groom each other in dominance (haven't you even seen those times when 2 cats are grooming each other, each beginning to speed up like they're racing, then they start hitting each other and fighting). Buffy, the dominant one, doesn't lick me, but Willow (the wuss, lol) does. Mostly she does it when she's just woken up and my finger is resting next to her face. She'll lick for ever and ever, moving down the finger until she reaches her butt, then she'll start grooming herself. Sometimes she'll just be standing, minding her own business, and when I give her my finger, she'll lick (and lick and lick and lick)
post #10 of 17
once in a while, my Speed (a Persian cross) wud lick my hair, face n nose. yeah.. this shows that the cat really loves u... some cats wud show different ways to show their affections such as rubbing their cheek on ur leg, gentle meows by looking at u etc
post #11 of 17
Well.... is just a CAT THING that they love you and they will try to groom you or even kneading you... if you feel a bit un-comfortable try to pet him more....keep him busy hehehehe...
post #12 of 17
I always thought it was that my grooming wasnt up to kitty standards... ohh my yorkie Gigi also licks...
post #13 of 17
My cats try to groom my hair, but as it reaches down almost to my waist they do tend to get bored very quickly (it sticks to their tongue )
post #14 of 17
I've always been told that cats lick our skin because we are "salty" and cats use the salt our bodies produce as a nutrient. Whether that's true or not, I don't know.

Luna does it mainly so I wash her face. You know how cats will lick each others face since its harder to clean? Luna does that with me. She licks my hand or finger then puts her face where she just licked. Then I rub it.
post #15 of 17
My oldest cat, Thisbe, loves to groom me. I take it as a supreme compliment and don't interrupt her. LOL Really, when you think about it, it can be very relaxing to sit there and be pampered by your kittycat! Since Thisbe was already six or seven when I got her, I have no idea whether she had any litters before being spayed. Perhaps she's reliving mommying days.
post #16 of 17
Sleeves doesnt groom me a lot, but he licks all over Marks face when he comes to get in bed with us, every night! Its so funny and so cute. He did lick my hand for ages once when I was sick and it made me feel so much better!!
post #17 of 17
Quote:
Originally Posted by lunasmom
Luna does it mainly so I wash her face. You know how cats will lick each others face since its harder to clean? Luna does that with me. She licks my hand or finger then puts her face where she just licked. Then I rub it.
Josie does that to me too. I also took it as she wanted me to wash her in areas she couldn't reach. Glad to know it's something other people have experienced.
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