do cats *need* pettings?

of all the cats who have shared my life, Pepper is the only one who, to my sense, *needs* petting. has to have pettingks.  he'll come and sit at the desk, look at me or teh SO and mew plaintively until petted. he'll begin purring immediately; after a few pets he'll move a couple of feet away and proceed with whatever napping/cleaning/sitting business he has pending. these demands for pettings occur several times a day.

I know cats like to be petted and we like petting them, but with Pepper it seems like such a direct need that I wonder:  do any of y'all cats behave in a similar fashion?  am I just reading to much into a normal behavior?

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12 thoughts on “do cats *need* pettings?

  1. Pepper wants you to perceive it as *needing* pettings. I perceive it as that. It's just that they're so convincing in actively wanting something. Mishoo often sleeps in a cushy bed on a chair in the other room. But he'll come in at all hours of the night when he wants to be petted. I don't think he wakes up needing pettingks. But maybe he does…?!? He does a splendid 12-lb. bunny flop.

  2. My Muki definitely needs pets. He seeks them out and demands them with relentless head-butts if I don't immediately respond. We go through a ritual almost every night when I crawl into bed and he insists that I must pet him before settling in with my book or to sleep. Then he snuggles up against my ribs, bathes, and eventually settles in for his own nap.
    My other kitty is more aloof but she still occasionally asks for pets.

  3. Must have, yes, but not always pettins. Mikey NEEDS to cuddle so close he's practically inside our skins. Megan NEEDS me to wear pants (as opposed to shorts) so that she can lie on my outstretched legs as I recline on our sofa and she won't be touching icky human leg skin.

  4. thanks jp. I knew you'd have some insight. I have never thought of meself as spiritual or being able to understand non-human animals, but with Pepper is different: he has such a sadness, a melancholy that is only lifted momentarily. @hb: awww. your Muki is sweet. what a nice way to settle into bed.@rp: LOL at Megan not wanting to "touch icky human skin". tortietude at work.

  5. I often wondered if cats really "needed" pettings, too. Until one day several years ago. A sad old scarred up barn cat came into our garage. The poor old dude was almost starved to death. But, when I took him out a bowl of food he gobbled up a bite, then, whilst swallowing, would come and rub and purr and rub against me, then go grab another bite. I got the impression he was starving for food AND affection. It was very touching! He lived several good long years with us before dying of even older age! ;)

  6. Edgar will force his head under my hand for pettings (I use the word force because that is literally what he will do if my hand is in such a position that there really isn't space for his head to even be there). He will also meow if I take my petting hand off him before he is ready for it to be done.

  7. Pavlov's Dog, meet Mariser's Cat… He's conditioning you… Part of their global takeover plans I tell you. LOL

  8. Our TK NEEEEEDS pettingks so much he will sometimes even forgo gooshyfud for them. So maybe it's a tux thing. Lots of piteous loud chatter, demanding. Several times a day but not for long, like Pepper.TK is generally a happicat, but he requires much atten-shon from us in addition to petting.I think it's nice Pepperito has accepted you as his people.

  9. Most cat species are relatively solitary but I'd say that the domestic cat has evolved enough that it would probably suffer pretty seriously without any affection. It would be like depriving a child from human contact in a way, although not nearly as detrimental. Affection boosts the immune system and helps a cat's appetite. Cats who are sick have been rumored to die from "depression".

  10. My baby certainly needs pets. She has gotten more lovey and clingy with age too. Any time I am in proper sitting position (and sometimes when I'm not), it's lap-love time.

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