It’s not the cat’s fault that they are given the (false) negative rap regarding bonding and socialization. Dogs, which are man’s most beloved companions were domesticated as social pets prior to the time of cats. This means that they are ahead of the curve in understanding us. They also know when we’re down and ways to cheer us up. After spending some more time with our furry friends Do cats understand when you’re down?

The extra bonding time that occurred during the outbreak could have changed your cat-human bond more than you realize according to Ragen McGowan Ph.D. the Animal Behavior Specialist at Purina. “Cats have become more bonded to their parents, and might be able better understand their human’s feelings of sadness.”

Do Cats Sense Sadness?

orange tabby cat on ground

Maybe. Although we want to communicate with our pets, we aren’t able to. We can’t know the truth about what cats are thinking or feeling, but we know that they’re curious creatures who employ clues to alter their behavior. What we know is that how cats read human emotions is a relatively new and early area of study. Here are some of the ways cats could be tuned into our emotions:


Cats could use cues such as our scent to recognize us, McGowan says. But it’s not clear when our scents could indicate sadness. Or if the cats smell, detect and respond to the scents.

Visual Hints

Are you ready for an ugly cry? McGowan has ( kinda) positive information. “While cats are able to see with great recognition of other things, studies have shown that they have a hard in recognizing faces of humans,” McGowan says. You can now scrunch your facial features and spread it spill out. Your cat will not be able to tell since she’s not sure of which face you usually look like.

There is however a visual signal that cats respond to. Researchers believe that it plays an important role in the human-cat relationship. “Cats can sense the gaze of where our eyes are. They can utilize this to gauge our mood or our intentions,” McGowan says. Include a quick blink and you will be in full conversation with your furry friend.

Auditory Clues

Have you ever talked with your cat using a pet camera and phone? Yes, I did and it’s obvious that cats respond to their human voice. “Cats are able to discern human emotion state by how they speak or if the person has made “sad” or “happy” sounds,” McGowan says.

How cats interpret human emotions

man in gray crew neck shirt holding white and black cat

You’d have to be kidding me if claimed my cat hasn’t gazed up at me as I was crying. What’s the meaning? “Your cat is probably looking at you and crying as they try to understand the things they’re seeing and hearing,” McGowan says. Your cat may not be able to comprehend human crying but it’s likely that she’ll collect all the clues she can and utilize these to alter her behavior.

Researchers have discovered they know that reinforcement is a major factor in the way your cat chooses to respond. If your preferred method of making yourself smile is to be awed by your cat you may be able to associate your sad expression with attracting attention.

If cats are able to understand the sadness in the way that we humans comprehend sadness, scientists do not know. In any case, there is evidence to suggest that cats soothe humans when they are sad. “When pet parents are down, cats rub against them more frequently. Your cat may be responding to your state of mind in an effort to soothe you or entice you to pay attention,” McGowan says.

How do human emotions affect the Cat?

Cats can have a huge influence on our mood. When we pet a cat, “happy chemicals” are released within our brains. But how do our moods influence these chemicals? ” Research has revealed that owners and cats reflect each other’s health and behavior,” McGowan says. “Similarly a Purina survey revealed 71% of cat owners believe that their cat is stressed whenever they’re stressed.”

As McGowan states that it’s just as vital for us as it is to the pets that we take care of our mental well-being. If you’re feeling down First, take your cat to the vet. If you are noticing an anxiety issue in your feline caused by emotions, McGowan suggests enriching her surroundings and asking your vet to determine if a tranquil medication is suitable for her.

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