There's no end to the human benefits of cuddling with our favorite feline friends—lowered stress, lowered blood pressure, a general sense of love and well-being.
And yet, we can't help being perplexed by one of the universal hallmarks of kitty affection: A cat's insistence on pushing his tush as close to your face as humanly (felinely?) possible.
You know what we mean.
Cats are mysterious creatures in many ways, but it turns out that this specific behavior isn't as hard to interpret as it might seem. In fact, it's actually a compliment…of sorts.
According to cat expert Amy Shojai, who has authored numerous books on pet behavior, kitties raise their tails as a sign of friendliness and trust, granting full access to all those intimate, olfactory details found in their scent. Turning around makes that invitation even clearer.
Shojai writes that cats' butt presentations are, in fact, a show of love and trust — likening it to "a human's enthusiastic hug or a kiss on each cheek in greeting."
Thanks, kitty? We guess this means we should tolerate our kitties' backwards shows of love with more patience in the future. Still, we wouldn't recommend taking too big a whiff—or reciprocating in kind.
(h/t: The Dodo)
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