Monday, February 13, 2012

The Need to Knead

This post originally appeared on April 2nd 2010 and didn't get many views. Thought I would repeat it since I am incommunicado until Tuesday! Enjoy!
Photo courtesy of Photobucket 







Nope your cat is not readying bread or pizza dough for baking, practicing for a position as a kitty masseuse or applying CPR when he or she alternately pushes out and pulls in with their front paws with a glazed expression on their face, your cat is performing the act of "kneading" and there are a few theories as to why this behavior exists.

According to Wikipedia one theory is that kneading may have an origin that goes waaaay back to the cats' wild ancestors when they used to have to smash down grass or foliage to make a nest to rest in.

Another more commonly known theory is the cat is returning to a "happier place", kitten-hood, where it used to knead it's Mama's teats in order to extract milk. If you study the cats face while it is kneading you may sense a degree of urgency as he kneads as in "feed me now"! Some cats are more subtle and have an expression of sheer kitty nirvana on their faces as they knead. Some feel that cats knead from being weaned too early from their Mama's and some feel it is a result of being weaned too late!

Other cats (unfortunately in the case of Cody) according to Wikipedia "have been observed to exhibit sexual movements, not unlike a dog "humping" a human leg" which can be accompanied by kneading and suckling. Not so much fun when they choose YOU as the object of their affection.





No matter what the reason please don't disturb your cat's trance-like state when it is kneading. Your cat is kneading because it is content, because it views you or the blanket, pillow, stuffed animal or whatever object it chooses to knead, as a maternal figure and just like us,  cats enjoy the security and comfort of a little motherly love.

26 comments:

  1. Ha..Ha..Ha...That doggie is totally sleepy head !
    xoxo

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  2. Oh My Cat, that poor doggie, MOL. Cats making biscuits always crack me up. I have one who is a master breadmaker and two who rarely knead.

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  3. I love cat massage!!!!I think that dog is sleeping because it's so good, the massage is purrrrfect!
    Luna - WE LOVE LUNA

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  4. Awww me and Charlie so agree!! Let kitty knead all they want because it makes them happy whatever the reason they do it! Yay!! Take care
    x

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  5. I had one that was a kneader and a sucker.. lol..

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  6. Oh dear, I didn't know anything like this one!

    Both of the cat and the dog are a cute pair!

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  7. I think June Buggie uses kneading as a means of torture!

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  8. How sweet!
    Neither one of my furbabies has the *need to knead*!

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  9. Mum says ouchie when we knead on her knees!
    Luv Hannah and Lucy xx xx

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  10. Delicious massage!!!! I love this video!

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  11. Is that cat doing CPR? lol so funny!

    Austin makes biscuits a lot. Mostly on me, but sometimes even when I speak to him he starts up. I love it. I think it’s pure affection (well like to think so) Happily he doesn’t combine it with errr humping!! x

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  12. What an adorable video you found!! I have 3 cats and have had many before and all of them have done that so I don't think its about weening, its all about the happy place. :) I have one that loves to do it a LOT and I have to make sure to keep her nails trimed or I am one drop at a time blood donor. I started a new hop for Mondays if you and Cody want to stop by. Hope you are at the start of a great week!!

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  13. That sure is one patient dog. Guess he is used to that going on. Our Mahoney likes to knead. If fact they all do. I think it is just a place of comfort. Take care.

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  14. Haha! That dog slept right through it. I love to knead. I do it on dad's tummy when he is sat down, and on mum's head when she goes to bed.
    Eric

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  15. ha ha - cute. We did not know those things.,

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  16. Bazinga is a kneader too...she'll crawl beneath the covers and go to town on my belly, purring up a storm.

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  17. Luxington wakes me up every morning due to his need to knead... he cries next to me until I roll over and hold out my arms, he then cuddles up against me and kneads on me, drools on me, and puuurrrrrrrrrrrs. Every single morning. It's love.

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  18. One of my kitties is a big kneader. I sometimes wake up in the midnight as he starts kneading and purring. He looks so happy and looking at him makes me very happy too :-)

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  19. Glad you reposted this - it's very interesting!

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  20. Guido loves kneading so we nickname him Mr Stampy.

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  21. Forget this video, I want to see one of Cody humping something! HAH!

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  22. Like others said, I'd like to see a video of THAT lol! I've never heard of cats humping when they knead. Zoomie loves to knead Zora; she doesn't really always appreciate it lol

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  23. Thanks! I have not seen before so like cat massage...

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  24. Thanks! I have not seen before so like cat massage...

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  25. Thanks! I have not seen before so like cat massage...

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