Cats Wagging Tails – Why Do They Do It?

Cat Wagging Tail

They say dogs wag their tails when they’re happy and cats wag their tails when they’re angry, but how true is that? Read on to find out what it means when a cat wags its tail!

It’s All In The Tail

You can tell a lot about what a cat is thinking from what their tail is doing.

Raised Tail

Sometimes a raised tail just means your feline friend is happy to see you. If the tail is raised with a slightly bent tip and their ears are raised up it means your cat wants to say hello. Cats may also approach each other like that when greeting their own feline friends.

Wagging Tail

If a dog wags their tail it means they’re excited and happy to see you. If a cat wags their tail, it means they’re annoyed, frustrated or angry. The more annoyed the cat gets, the more ferociously their tail will thrash.


If you’re playing or cuddling your cat and their tail starts to move like this, it’s time to back off and leave your kitty in peace to avoid getting scratched or bitten.


Twitching Tail

If your cat’s tail is wagging quickly, it’s a bad sign. However, if your cats tail is just twitching, it might just mean the cat is curious about an object or a situation.


All Puffed Up

If your cats tail puffs up and gets all bristly while their back is arched, it is a sign that they are feeling scared, threatened and either defensive or on the attack.


The more puffed up the tail gets, the more aggressive the cat is becoming. If their ears go back and the cat starts hissing or growling, it’s a pretty sure sign that they are getting ready for a fight.


Cats normally react like this if another animal perturbs them, whether it’s another cat, a dog or a human. If your cat’s tail has bristled because of you, then you probably startled them.


Let them know you don’t mean any harm by talking calmly and backing away. Don’t get too close though or you may end up with a few scratches!


Flicking Tail

If your cat has their tail low, rigid and flicking from side to side, it is a sign that the cat is upset, angry or about to pounce on their prey.


Curled Tail

If your cat’s tail is wrapped around their body, it could mean they are anxious and are thus lying in a defensive position that will protect them if necessary. However, it could also mean that the cat is content and chilled out. If your cat is napping and gently purring it’s a pretty good sign that they’re just chilling.


Wrapped Tail

Ever wondered if your cat loves you? If they often come up to you, wrap their tail around your leg or arm, and head butt you frequently, it’s a sign of affection and it means you’re in the kitty’s good books.


How To Read Your Cat

Cats can be loving and affectionate, but it takes time to build that bond and you can’t expect it to happen straight away. Let the cat take things at their own pace, so always make sure they’re calm and feel safe before picking them up.

Also remember to keep a close watch over your cat’s body language. If the cats tail starts lashing and their ears go back, it’s pretty obvious they want you to stop whatever you’re doing.

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