If your cat extends its claws when you pet it, this post will show you likely reasons why and what you can do about them.
So, why does my cat extend its paws when I pet it? Likely reasons why your cat extends its paws when you pet it are that it is kneading, it wants you to stop petting it or that it simply likes the feeling.
There are a number of possible reasons why your cat extends its paws when you pet it. However, there are some things you can consider to help figure why it has been doing it.
Reasons why your cat extends its paws when you pet it
Below are likely causes and what would make them more likely.
It is kneading
When cats are happy, they will often start to pat their paws up and down while extending their paws. If your cat does this while you are petting it and it also does things such as purr and rub itself against you, it is likely that your cat is showing pleasure.
It wants you to stop petting it
Another possible cause is that your cat wants you to stop petting it. This would be more likely if your cat also does things such as hiss, scratch, bite, flick its tail and try to move away from you. In this case, it would help to make sure that you have been petting it in a way that it likes.
It simply likes the feeling
The cause could also be that your cat simply likes the way that it feels. This would be more likely if your cat also extends its paws in a similar way even when you are not petting it.
Things to consider
Below are some things you can consider to help figure out the main cause.
The body language your cat shows
It would help to consider the body language your cat shows when it starts clawing. If it shows signs of pleasure such as by purring, it would be more likely that your cat is kneading. Whereas, if it claws you strongly and raises its paw at you, it would be more likely that it wants you to stop petting it.
If your cat always extends its claws when you pet it
If your cat does not always extend its paws when you pet it, it would also help to consider what else is different when your cat does it. If it does it more when you pet it in a certain way, it could be the case that it likes how you are petting it if it also purrs and pats its paws up and down like it is kneading.
What to do about your cat extending its paws when you pet it
Below are some options you have when dealing with the behavior.
Ensure you are petting it right
If your cat seems to be doing it because it does not like how you are petting it, it would help to make sure that you have been petting it the right way. Generally, cats prefer to gently have their chins rubbed than to have the backs rubbed firmly.
Let it do it
If your cat is doing it because it is kneading and showing pleasure, another option would be to let your cat continue doing it but to get it to sit next to you instead of on you so that it does not claw you yourself.