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Nothing is better than having your favorite ball of fur curled up on your lap or next to you unless they’re also purring. In my case, no matter how beautiful this sound is, it always comes to an end once my kitties are asleep, or simply had enough of my love.
For some cat parents it usually never does. If you’re this lucky you might be wondering why.
Why is my cat purring constantly? Cats use purring usually to communicate positive emotions, while grooming, relaxing, and feeling content. Constant purring in kittens can happen during nursing, while older cats will purr so much when they’re happy or to self-soothe during stressful situations, and cope with physical pain.
If your kitty keeps purring all the time and you want to know the reasons, then all we have to do is dive right in!
Why Is My Cat Purring Constantly?
There’s a veil of mystery hanging over a cat’s purring, but just like with their meows they can purr for a variety of reasons. It might also be useful to note that since there’s more than one kind of purr the sound might seem to go on continually.
Reason 1: Your Cat Is Happy
You might listen to your cat’s soft purring while you lay your head close to their belly, or if it’s loud enough then you might be able to hear it, simply by being in close proximity to each other. Cats will usually purr for a prolonged time as long as they’re in a relaxed environment, surrounded by the people and other pets they feel comfortable and content to be around.
The Journal of Zoology explains that “purring is produced mostly by juveniles, but also by adults, in positive contexts (relaxed, friendly) such as nursing/suckling, mutual grooming, courtship or friendly approach.”
If you have more than one cat that shares a friendly bond, then you might notice that their purring goes on and on. Of course, if we’re not in the same room with our cat then we can’t be sure that they’re purring, but if they constantly purr in your presence then it’s the result of your company and good petting skills!
Reason 2: Your Cat Needs Your Attention
We might perceive purring as a consistent sound, but there are variations that serve a very specific purpose. One such variation might sound very similar to the purr of contentment, but it also contains an additional high-pitched note.
This purr is known as the Solicitation Purr and an analysis of the sound revealed that cats use it when they want something from their caregiver. It can be food, attention, or the need to play, and most of the time it works because this purr elicits a caregiving response from us.
If you hear your kitty purr constantly then they might use different types of purrs to ask you for something, and not simply to shower you with their adoration. In fact, Karen McCombemail a member of the research team states that “cats can exaggerate this almost-hidden aspect of purring at will and do so when they find it useful.”
So, this goes to show that while our cat’s purr is a response to feeling happy it’s also something they can consciously use to their advantage. In that case, why wouldn’t they purr constantly right?
Reason 3: Your Cat Is Stressed
While this sweet rumbling sound is usually associated with a happy cat, it can also serve as a coping mechanism when our feline friends don’t feel well. You might have caught yourself biting your nails in stressful moments, or pacing up and down your apartment, well your cat does something similar by purring.
Some cats can get stressed by the smallest of changes, and if they use purring to cope with them then you might catch them make that noise most of the time if not constantly. Then again if you’re aware of a bigger change in their life, like losing their previous owner, moving houses, or anything that can put them under duress then the constant purring is a way to self-soothe.
It’s definitely not easy to find the differences between a happy and a stress-related purr, that’s why looking at the bigger picture is important. Is your kitty happy and healthy, or have you noticed them withdraw, act out or skip meals?
Changes in their behavior, diet, and even coat appearance along with constant purring are definite signs that something is bothering your little furball. You can look for the cause in their environment, but I think a trip to the vet can also help you figure out things much faster and with less stress!
Reason 4: Your Cat Is In Pain
Your kitty’s constant purring could also be a sign of another issue like an illness, an injury that causes physical pain. The reason behind this is the fact that purring has also healing properties, and research has shown that it can help cats get physically better faster.
It might sound like some feline magic, and while it is an extraordinary ability it can be explained. A study showed that cats generate strong frequencies between 25 and 150 Hz, and produce fundamental, dominant, or strong frequencies at exactly 25 Hz and 50 Hz.
Both of these purring frequencies “correspond to vibrational/electrical frequencies used in treatment for bone growth/fractures, pain, edema, muscle growth/strain, joint flexibility, dyspnea, and wounds.”
If your kitty has been an infrequent purring machine and now they keep producing this sound all the time nonstop try to observe their overall wellbeing. If they’re allowed to go outdoors they could’ve injured their tail or a paw. Look for signs of limping, or lethargy, and check their litterbox business for diarrhea, or constipation.
Purring can be a beautiful sound made to show us that our feline companions are happy, or that they want cuddles, but perhaps they’re also telling us that they’re not feeling well. This sound acts as analgetic since it helps produce endorphins, the hormone of happiness.
So, make sure you’re listening carefully not only to your cat’s purr but to their overall happiness. If something feels strange even something as innocent as constant purring makes sure to take your kitty to the vet so you can put both your and your cat’s worries behind!
Where Does The Purring Sound Come from?
Knowing what purring means takes time because you have to learn to read past that and see what your cat’s body language tells you. But I think it’s also important to understand how purring works, a question that has been bugging scientists, for a very long time!
Well, purring is similar to blinking. We can blink on command, but we also do it automatically. Vanessa Barrs, a feline expert also agrees that cats do have conscious control over purring, but where does it come from?
Cats produce this rumbling sound with the help of their larynx and diaphragm, but most importantly there’s a rigid bone in the cat’s throat that supports the larynx and tongue, called the hyoid. When our cats are breathing, the air hits the larynx muscles and it vibrates, which in turn makes this hyoid bone resonate. Basically, it’s like a musical instrument controlled by the cat’s autonomic nervous system.
It might seem like a simple explanation to some, while others will keep on listening to it in wonder, but for me what makes it even more precious is the fact that our small cats are one of the few felines that can make this sound happen!
Why Does My Kitten Purr All The Time?
The beautiful purring sound is probably the first sound kittens hear since cats that are in labor will oftentimes purr to manage the pain. It’s also the first vocalization they learn to make when they’re just a couple of days old.
Most likely this sound helps strengthen the bond between the mother and her kittens, and most importantly it lets the mother know that her babies are close by and content. If your mama cat has given birth to kittens, then you’ll most likely notice them all purring constantly. Even as they grow up and discover the world around them her kittens will purr for her.
When I found my cat, he was but a lost baby and he was like a non-stop purring machine. Perhaps he was anxious in his new environment, or maybe he was looking for his mother. It’s also possible that he was purring around me all the time because he thought I was his mother since he also liked to bury himself in my hair, knead it, bite it, and purr.
Just look how this kitten starts purring the moment they see their owner and they don’t stop!
Kittens and older cats use their purrs to express contentment especially if their overall behavior shows us that they’re healthy and happy kittens. But if you’re worried that the constant purring is a sign of pain, then make sure to let your vet know during the examination. Otherwise, I’d suggest you enjoy these constant kitten purrs!
Why Does My Kitten Keep Purring While Biting Me?
If you’ve brought a young kitten into your home and your first encounter is constant purring and biting, then there are a few reasons behind this behavior. First of all, kittens bite and attack us, and their whole environment to that extent, to practice their predatory behaviors.
Since that’s something they’d do with their mother and littermates it makes sense that they’d also purr. Purring and biting could be combined if the kitten is in a playful mood, but it could also mean that they’re scared and frightened of their new environment.
It’s also possible that the biting is caused by petting-induced aggression. Perhaps you were petting your kitten and they were purring, but suddenly they felt irritated which naturally led to some biting and licking and then biting again.
These moments are important cause these are opportunities to teach your kitten to play nice. Try not to use your hands when their inner hunter is awake and use various toys instead. If they’re purring during this interaction simply take it as a compliment and keep up the good game!
Should I Be Worried If My Cat Is Purring Constantly?
Cats use their purring skills intentionally and unintentionally for various reasons, and there are different explanations as to why a kitty would be purring constantly. If they’re doing it around, you then it most likely is a sign of affection.
The volume and intensity can differ, so it’s also possible that while others don’t think that their kitty is purring constantly, they’re simply not able to hear the low purring frequency. It can of course be a sign of depression and sickness, but constant purring isn’t enough to make a diagnosis.
You need to keep an eye on behavioral changes, excessive behaviors that usually happen in the litterbox or with overgrooming. But keeping an eye on also isn’t enough, if you feel worried about your feline friend then take them for a check-up and make sure to maintain regular check-ups especially as they grow older!
What Does It Mean When Your Cat Stops Purring?
While purring constantly will usually be seen as a good sign the lack of purrs will naturally alert some cat parents. If you’ve adopted a rescue kitty, or you’re a new cat parent then don’t be too disheartened by the lack of purring.
Your new feline companion might need some time to adjust to their new environment and their owner. Once they begin to feel safe and you make sure to spend some quality time with them then you might notice that they start purring when you’re around. With time the sound might grow more confident and frequent.
If your long-term cat has suddenly stopped his constant purring then it could be a sign of stress instead. You might also notice a change in their overall behavior, and while purring is a coping mechanism, they might use it when you’re not around instead.
An addition to your family like a baby or another cat can spark jealousy, and if you’ve been gone from home more than usual then your kitty might feel neglected. Perhaps you need to find new ways to connect to your cat and turn the purring machine back on!
What’s important to keep in mind is that all cats express themselves in unique ways, even when it comes to purring. Marjan Debevere, a cat shelter photographer says that “all cats are different; some never purr, and some will purr constantly.”
Whenever I hear my cats purr, I feel like I’m witnessing one of nature’s little miracles. It’s a happy, and soothing sound, with therapeutic vibrations, and it can even help release some of our stress. That’s why I’m sure if my cat’s purring was constant, it’s a sound worth listening to!
Now tells us, is your kitty a non-stop purring producer? If they were would you be worried, and could you ever have enough of it?