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How do you know your pet loves you?

Pet Parent tips from Pet Protect

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How do you know your pet loves you?

The bond between a pet parent and their pets is incredibly special and many owners may wonder if their pets love them the way they do.

Recognising the common signs of expression may help pet parents build a stronger bond with their pets and can also help to understand if they may be unhappy or unwell.

Pets express their feelings in many ways, and we’ve created the below guide to show you the different signs that your pet may give to show you they love you.

Slow blink

When your pet regularly gives you direct eye contact, it can be a sign of trust and affection.

  • If your pet looks at you with soft eyes or blinks slowly, it may be a way of expressing love.
  • A cat with partially open, relaxed eyes is showing you that they feel safe. They don’t need to be on high alert with their eyes wide and focused. If your cat slowly blinks at you this is known as the “kitty kiss” and is an ultimate sign of love.

Physical contact

  • Cats living in bonded groups will greet one another by butting heads as a way of scent swapping, so a cat who does this to you is saying “hello friend”.
  • Cats who lick or groom their owner are showing affection and can also help to form a bond.
  • Dogs can nuzzle into you or rub against you to show you they feel safe and secure.

Showing you their bellies

  • Cats are prey animals as well as being the predator that we all know them for. A cat who willingly rolls over onto their back to show you their belly is in a vulnerable position. They are showing you that they trust you and feel safe. As tempting as it is, most cats do not enjoy having their tummy stroked and this behaviour is often mistaken for an invitation. Unless you know your cat is a rare exception, don’t rub their belly as this can be a betrayal of trust.

Following you around

  • Pets that follow you from room to room are showing you they have a strong attachment and a desire to be close to you.

Excitement when you return

  • Your pet may greet you enthusiastically when you come home from being away for periods of time. It’s a good sign that they have missed you and are happy to see you.

Bringing you gifts

  • Cats are born to hunt; even indoor cats will hunt their toys to express their natural instincts. While it may seem strange to us, this behaviour is a cat’s way of sharing and providing for their family and also a sign of love.

Purring and meowing

  • Cats often purr when they feel content, which is another sign of happiness.
  • Dogs may bark joyfully to show they are happy.
  • It is important to note that experts have shown that cats will also purr when the cat is in pain or stressed to self sooth. It’s important to take note of the entire situation before assuming your cats is happy.

Sleeping near or with you

  • Sleeping is the cats ultimate state of vulnerability. In the wild cats only sleep in places hidden away for safety. A cat who chooses to sleep near, or on you is saying “you make me feel safe” and I am sure all cat owners can agree that there is nothing more comforting than a sleeping cat on your lap.
  • Dogs also enjoy cuddling with their owners and seeking a physical closeness is a clear sign of affection.

Tail wagging or body language

  • Dogs often wag their tails when they are happy or excited. The speed and height of the way can often convey different emotions.
  • Pay attention to your pet’s overall body language, as a relaxed and happy demeanour is a positive indicator.

It’s also worth remembering that if your pets do not provide signs of the above, it does not mean they do not love you, some cats or dogs are more demonstrative than others.


Pet care advice when you need it the most.

If your pet is unwell our 24/7 advice service may help save you an unnecessary trip to the vet.

Speak to a vet or vet nurse by phone, chat, and video.

Our pet care service also offers behavioural and nutritional support, to help you take care of your pet.

Learn more about our petconnect service

Do you need pet insurance?

We understand being a pet parent can be tough, especially if your pet becomes ill or gets injured.

It’s important to consider pet insurance if you have a pet, as cover can help cover the cost of vet fees should your cat or dog need to visit the vet.

Compare our insurance plans and get a quote through our website using the following link.

Get a quote for your pet

By Melissa Pickburn

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