Why Cats Shove Their Fluffy Butts In Your Face


Every cat owner has likely experienced it. You come home from a long day at work and plop yourself down on the nearest comfy surface. Your cat jumps up next to you, kneading away, their engine already purring. You’re primed and ready to pet and give your kitty some well-earned scritches behind the ear when Mr. Socks turns around and sticks his furry little bum in your face.

We’re the first to admit that this sudden about-face can be a bit of an unpleasant sight, especially if your cat is a bit lax on their, uh, grooming sessions back there.

But even though the court-side view of your cat's rear isn't the most amazing view, take it as a compliment. It’s your cat’s way of saying, “Hey, I trust you and you make me feel safe." 

The presentation of their bum is a sign of trust. When your cat turns around, she is putting herself in a vulnerable position, possibly opening herself up for an attack. But by giving you a gander at her caboose, your cat's signaling that she feels safe and secure around you. 

Cats communicate through a combination of scent and body language - a raised tail is a sign of friendship and affection. It is also an invitation for other cats to come give them a sniff and learn all about their day, offering full access to all of the olfactory details about them found in their scent. It's essentially a way for cats to introduce themselves, akin to a handshake, and get to know each other better. 

Cats also have scent glands around their ears, mouth, and at the base of their tail, and use these scent glands to not only mark territory but to essentially "mark" their people, saying, "This is my human, other cats beware!"

Text: And what did we practice for meeting new people? Illustration: A cat showing its butt to the camera. Text: This?

So when your cat shoves her but in your face, she's asking you for affection - but also for a bit of reaffirmation of your social bond. When you pet your cat, you simultaneously depositing your scent from the glands on your hand and picking up her scent, which cats regard as being social. 

So the next time your cat comes in for a cuddle with her behind, take it for what it is: a compliment and sign of love, trust, and affection. 

Note: Originally published 2018.


  • Veli

    My 2 feral cats, Mimma (mom) & Fox (3 mth old), have their supper around 18:30. Their ‘dining’ area is the veranda right outside our lounge door. When Fox is hungry, she always comes inside the house & start meowing. Mimma gets very irritated when Fox does this. She absolutely dislikes coming inside the house. She starts growling at her and shouts for her to come out. As soon as she exits the house, Mimma jumps for her & gives her a little hiding. Why does Mimma do this to her child though?

  • Hughlene Collins

    I’m so happy that I found this article! I had been wondering if my cat, Emerald, was the only one who did that. When we’re in bed, she comes and lies on my chest and her bum is right in my face. I always put my hand up to keep her bum from touching my face and even my mouth. I just guide her bum over to one side and she seems fine with that!

  • RootyTooty

    My cat (a tom) literally goes down on his forearms with his arse up in the air when I rub him dry with a towel after he comes in from the rain! I have alsways thought he was a perv hahahahahaha!

  • Asem Qimasices

    Shoves her but into my face hahahaha what a way to describe the gesture

  • KinkyNothing

    What I do to return the gesture is to gently blow on their butts to simulate a real sniff:p

Leave a comment

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.