Why Does My Cat Stare At Me?

December 17, 2021 by Becca Glee Shepard
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As a cat owner, you’ve probably wondered at some point, “why does my cat always stare at me?” You might think they're having the most intense staring contest with the amount of eye contact they're giving you, but rest assured, this type of cat behavior is completely normal.

Depending on your cat and their temperament, their stare might be a little creepy, especially if they are staring with dilated pupils right into your eyes! Cats' pupil sizes can shift dramatically depending on how focused they’re looking at something. Instead of staring, they might keep their eyes partially open or give you slow blinks (rather than a complete staring showdown).

The truth is, there is nothing physically wrong with your feline when they stare at you. Cats are naturally curious creatures, and they're simply trying to communicate with you or their guardian, which is kind of adorable if you think about it.

What Does It Mean When A Cat Stares At You?

Cat staring meaning

Cat staring is one of many forms of communications cats use towards others. Typically a cat might stare at new or unfamiliar cats as an intimidation tactic, in hopes that the other cats will blink or shy away. 

Cats are visual hunters, so naturally, they tend to stare in order to keep a close eye on potential prey. Cats will also use a direct stare when they are feeling territorial, showing dominance, or posing a threat or challenge to other cats.

Kitten staring meaning

New cat parents might notice that their precious kitten is constantly staring at them. This may be your kitty’s way of learning their new surroundings, and also as a way to get their mother’s attention to nurse.

Kittens will use the same forms of communication as their adult counterparts in order to get attention. They may pur, groom themselves, or knead while they stare at their owners.

What Is My Cat Thinking When They Stare At Me?

Cat communication

Remember, staring is only one form of nonverbal communication cats use. The meaning of their stare can change depending on other communication cues. Are they purring or meowing? Is the cat kneading? If your feline is staring at you and purring, it may be a sign that your cat loves you. They may be trying to communicate their love and affection towards you.

If your cat is following you and staring at you, they might be trying to tell you that they are bored! Give them their favorite toy or something to chase so they can get some mental stimulation and play time. Cat not interested in the toys you have available to them? Check out some DIY cat toys that will surely get them looking in your direction. 

Pay attention to your cat’s posture when they are looking at you, too. Are their ears pulled back? Head tilted? Tail perked or swaying? These body language gestures are the tools cats use to communicate with us.

Have no fear — cat staring is a normal part of a cat’s sometimes quirky or weird behavior, but it is nothing to be alarmed by.

Show Your Feline Some Love

No matter how affectionate your cat is or isn’t, there’s nothing quite like that look they sometimes give to show us they love us.

Worried your cat’s behavior is outside the norm? Schedule a time to visit a licensed veterinarian to see what may be going on. With cat insurance, you’ll have coverage for illnesses your cat may experience in the future. 

Spot Pet Insurance takes your pet’s health seriously. We believe pets make us better people, so consider showing your cat just how much you love them with pet insurance today.

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