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How can I tell if my cat is purring because it's hungry or wants something?

ANSWER

Some cats purr when it's mealtime. British researchers studied the sounds that house cats make when they're hungry and when food isn't on their minds. The purrs don't sound the same.

When cats purr for food, they combine their normal purr with an unpleasant cry or mew, a bit like a human baby's cry. Experts believe that we're more likely to respond to this sound. They've found that people can tell the difference between the purrs, even if they aren't cat owners.

From: Why Do Cats Purr? WebMD Medical Reference

SOURCES:

Library of Congress: "Why and how do cats purr?"

ASPCA: "Cat Vocalizations."

Humane Society of the United States: "Cat Chat: Understanding Feline Language."

National Wildlife Federation: "Do cats purr? And why are there no green mammals?"

McComb, K. , July 14, 2009. Current Biology

Fauna Communications Research Institute: "The Felid Purr: A bio-mechanical healing mechanism."

Reviewed by Amy Flowers on February 09, 2017

WAS THIS ANSWER HELPFUL

SOURCES:

Library of Congress: "Why and how do cats purr?"

ASPCA: "Cat Vocalizations."

Humane Society of the United States: "Cat Chat: Understanding Feline Language."

National Wildlife Federation: "Do cats purr? And why are there no green mammals?"

McComb, K. , July 14, 2009. Current Biology

Fauna Communications Research Institute: "The Felid Purr: A bio-mechanical healing mechanism."

Reviewed by Amy Flowers on February 09, 2017

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    This tool does not provide medical advice. See additional information.