While it might seem like many cats fancy themselves as mini-masseuses, there’s a very good reason why your cat will use their little paws to prod you in that most adorable way. But I'm convinced there's a very convenient 'extra' reason why they do it...
Incredibly, most kittens start to ‘knead’ well before their eyes are even open. As a baby, they’ll use this move as a way of stimulating extra milk flow from their mother. But once they move out of home and move into yours, the kneading remains.
And I believe the reason is two-fold.
First of all, there's the big one. And the give away is the purr that becomes the background music to your massage. And don't start me on the drool!
Cats actually use kneading as a way of conveying their feelings of security and contentment. In fact, there’s no greater compliment that knowing you provide them with a level of love they relate back to when they were a content little kitten. Aww. Obsessive masseuses (like Cricket) are merely anxious to show you that gratitude…whenever and wherever they can.
But the 'other' reason is often under appreciated. And one that I so often see and hear about.
That poking and prodding is actually an invaluable way of assessing the softest and most comfortable spot for a nap. And while establishing the 'zen state' through the kneading helps get them prepped for sleep, that massage is invaluable mattress research! Just look how many times a massage is followed by a sleep in that exact same spot.
Napping straight after a massage? Who can blame them. They've got to get that 18 hours sleep a day somehow!
Oh and maybe trim their nails too. It makes for a much more enjoyable experience…