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That Chittering, Chattering Noise...

post #1 of 19
Thread Starter 
My cats like to look out of the windows at birds, squirrels, other cats, etc., and they make this funny chittering/chattering noise...it's not a meow, it's a different noise. Does this "on the prowl" sound have a name? I figured that they're trying to say, "I'm getting ready to attack!" (which doesn't sound incredibly efficient for a good hunter, giving the victim a heads up!). Just curious.

Thanks!
post #2 of 19
I've heard one of my cats making that noise and it sounds like a bird. So maybe it's meant to fool the prey into thinking everything's ok because there are birds?
post #3 of 19
I don't know what it's called but Sleeves does it every morning while he watches the birds. I think it just means he wants to go out and play with the birdies!
post #4 of 19
There is a book called 101 things your cat would say to its doctor, if it could talk. It talks about the Death Grip. That bite that a cat would give to kill its prey instantly. Because indoor cats cannot hung much, they still have the urge and the mental idea of what they should do... Something like that... If I find the book, I'll give you a better idea and the Author.
post #5 of 19
Jackson does the exact same thing, looking o9utside or playing. not sure of a name but it sure is cute!!!
post #6 of 19
It is a wonderful sound - very excited, but mine only do it when they are watching, not when they are actually hunting.
post #7 of 19
I read somewhere about the "Death Grip," but I also read that some people think that this clicking noise means "This is frustrating!" or "Darn it, if only I could get through the glass and pounce on that bird!" This might explain why cats tend to make this noise when they are watching an animal that they can't get to-- as you've noted, it would warn any creature they were actually hunting to be on the look out!
post #8 of 19
Past cats have done it, but the current two just give short meows.

It's almost as if they are salivating and smacking their "lips".
post #9 of 19
I remember reading the frustration part. That was it actually.
post #10 of 19
Here's a very cute video someone took of their cat making this "chirping" noise:

http://tinyurl.com/kvmru

I love it when Lilly makes that noise- always when watching birds or squirrels through the window.
post #11 of 19
Of course my two do that too--usually when they are watching birds, but also when they are sometimes stalkng a favorite toy.
post #12 of 19
I am going to have to pick this up thank you
post #13 of 19
Zissou does it outside on her leash too, so another vote for the "Man, Mooooom why won't you let me HUNT?!?!?"
She seems frustrated. She never does it right before she runs after a squirrel. Not a good thing on a leash.
post #14 of 19
sandy doesn't do this when watching the birds and squirrels but does it immediately and without whenever we play wih the Cat Dancer toy.
post #15 of 19
Kitters desn't do it watching big animals but little bugs or flying insects in the house. Like bee's or wasps! It's so darn cute and funny!
post #16 of 19
Quote:
Originally Posted by CurlyQ629
Here's a very cute video someone took of their cat making this "chirping" noise:

http://tinyurl.com/kvmru

I love it when Lilly makes that noise- always when watching birds or squirrels through the window.
LOL, That video made my day! Thats my Jackson. hehehehe I love it!!!
post #17 of 19
What a fantastic video, very cute!
My cat doesn't make that noise but every morning as regular as clock work she sits in the kitchen window and literally chatters her teeth together, which is also hilarious.
post #18 of 19
Quote:
Originally Posted by Gigi
I read somewhere about the "Death Grip," but I also read that some people think that this clicking noise means "This is frustrating!" or "Darn it, if only I could get through the glass and pounce on that bird!" This might explain why cats tend to make this noise when they are watching an animal that they can't get to-- as you've noted, it would warn any creature they were actually hunting to be on the look out!
Swanie does it, kind of clacking his teeth or something. I figured he was thinking about what he would do if he could get hold of all those feathers flying around out there.

And I do think it has to be frustrating for the poor cat to watch life through a window and not participate, especially the ones who are natural hunters like I think Swanie is based on his play. I just wish there was a safe way to let him go out and experience it some (not that I want him chasing birds or squirrels!)
post #19 of 19
Quote:
Originally Posted by SillyJilly
Kitters desn't do it watching big animals but little bugs or flying insects in the house. Like bee's or wasps! It's so darn cute and funny!
Swanie saw a bug once flying around the light above my kitchen table. He flew over the side of the couch, onto the table, and stood on his back legs trying to get to the bug. All the while he was giving a very low meow meow meow (almost a 1-sylable meow). We were wondering what he was saying to the bug
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