If your cat licks you while kneading, this post will show you a number of possible reasons why your cat does it and what you can do about it.
So, why does my cat lick me while kneading? The most likely reason why your cats licks you while kneading is because that it is what it had to do to get milk from its mother as a kitten. It is also likely to be to show pleasure and affection.
There are actually a number of possible reasons why your cat licks you while kneading and it might be doing it due to a combination of reasons. However, there are some things you can consider to help figure out the main cause and there are some things you can do about it.
Reasons why your cat licks you while kneading
Below are a number of possible reasons why your cat licks you while kneading and what would make each of them more likely.
It is showing pleasure
When cats are kittens, it is necessary for them to knead and lick their mothers so that they can get milk. While this is not likely to be the reason why your cat does it to you, it is likely to be a natural thing your cat does when it is happy.
The reason why your cat licks you and kneads is likely to be that it is showing pleasure. The reason for this is likely to be to let you know that your cat is happy, it feels safe around you and that it wants you to continue petting it and being with it.
It is being affectionate
A possible cause is that your cat is showing affection back to you. This would be more likely if your cat does it when you are petting it and it also starts purring.
It is grooming you
Cats will often groom each other to help keep their fur clean and to show affection. A part of the reason why your cat does it could be that it is grooming you. This would be more likely if your cat doesn’t only lick your hands and if it also licks things such as your hair.
It likes how you taste
The reason why your cat licks you and kneads could also be that it likes the way that you taste. This would be more likely if your cat tends to lick you more when your hands have food on them or after you have been cooking.
To mark its scent
It could also be the case that your cat has been licking you in order to mark its scent on to you. This would be more likely if your cat also rubs itself on you when it does it and if it does not only lick your hands. By marking its scent on to you, it will make it less likely that other animals will enter its territory and will help to keep it safer.
Things to consider
Below are some things to consider in order to help figure out the main reason why your cat has been doing it.
If your cat has always licked you when kneading
If your cat did not always lick you and knead, it would help to consider what else happened when it first started doing it. If it started doing it suddenly after you recently bought or adopted it, it could be a sign that it has become more comfortable around you.
What is different when your cat does not lick you and knead
If your cat tends to do it more in a certain situation, it would also help to consider what is different about the timing. For example, if it does it when you are petting it, the cause could be that it is being affectionate or grooming you.
What to do about your cat licking you when kneading
Below are some options you have when dealing with the behavior.
Let it do it
Licking you and kneading is likely a good sign and it is likely that it means that your cat is happy. The best option would likely be to let your cat continue doing it.
Give it distractions
If you do not want your cat to lick you, another option would be to give your cat distractions when it seems likely to start licking you.
Pet it differently
Another option would be to pet your cat in a way that makes it more difficult to lick you such as by rubbing it bellow the chin.