Why Do Cats Clean Themselves Around You? This Is Why!

Cats love to groom, and this is what they mostly do during the day. That is why many people consider cats one of the cleanest animals. Aside from cleaning themselves most of the time, cats also know where to pee and poop. Cats truly deserve a spot on the list of clean animals. 

There is one thing cat owners realize when their cat is cleaning itself. Their cats clean themselves around them! If your pet cat is grooming itself around you, you may be wondering why this happens and if you should allow it to continue. Well, let me tell you first why cats clean themselves around you! 

Why do cats clean themselves around you? Your cat may groom itself around you because it already feels secure and comfortable to be around you. If you see this happens it is a clear sign that your cat is already comfortable inside your house. Sometimes, you may also see it occasionally groom itself on you. 

Yes! When your cat is very comfortable with you already, your pet cat may also clean themselves on your lap. So, now you know why your cat cleans itself around you, it is time to know if you should allow this to happen or not. Or if you can pet your cat while doing this. Keep reading because today, you will be learning more about cats! 

Should You Stop Your Cat From Grooming Itself Around You?

No! You should not stop your pet cat from grooming itself around you unless your pet cat blocks your path. Of course, you need to move your cat if it blocks your path, especially if you need to do something. For example, you are cooking something, and you go to the living room for a moment to see what is the next basketball game, and the food you are cooking starts to smell burned. 

However, some people wish to stop this because they find it annoying when they have to step over their cat to move from one place to another. The reason I say no is that your cat already feels comfortable with you and will feel rejected if you do this. So, it is best to let your cat groom themselves around you. Unless you need to go to another place, it is ok to move your cat.

How To Stop Your Cat From Grooming Itself Around You?

If you dislike your cat grooming itself around you, there are few things you can do to stop this. However, personally, I think you should leave your cat but here are some suggestions if you have a good reason for not wanting this kind of attitude.

Distract Your Cat

Once your cat starts to jump on the couch, bed, chair, or wherever it usually starts grooming itself around you, this is an opportunity to distract your pet cat. Once your cat starts to groom itself while sitting with you on the couch or bed, you can simply throw a ball or toy that your pet cat loves. Also, you can throw away some of your cat’s favorite treats. 

Once your cat is already distracted by the treats or their favorite toy that you have thrown, you can move to another place to prevent your cat from returning to do the exact same thing. Your cat will grasp the message and hopefully stop this behavior. However, this is not an overnight solution. It takes time for your cat to learn not to clean themselves around or near you. 

Make Sudden Noise

The next thing you can do is to make sudden noises. However, the noise must not be too loud, which would scare your cat. It can simply say hey! Or pst! Hopefully, your cat will move. It is very useful if your pet cat is blocking your path and you need to do something in your kitchen or bathroom.

Carry Your Cat

If your cat cannot be distracted by treats, toys, or loud noise, you can just simply carry your cat and move it to another place. This is useful if your pet cat is blocking your path or if your cat sits on your couch or bed and you don’t want their fur to go into your bed or couch. If you will carry your cat and move it to another place, never throw your cat. Gently put your cat in another place.

Why Do Cats Groom Themselves?

There are several reasons why cats groom themselves, such as keeping themselves clean, keeping their body temperature regulated, keeping their fur smooth, or avoiding hairballs. There is more to grooming than just cleaning! 

As you can see, cats have lots of hair, unless it is a breed that has no lots of hair, so they need to groom themselves regularly. It is a daily activity that all cats around the world do. Also, if you think that your cat does not need help from you to groom themselves, you are wrong. You should still bathe your cat at least twice a month. 

Is It Ok To Touch My Cat While It Grooms Itself?

Yes! It is ok for you to touch or pet your cat while it grooms itself. However, it is still much better to wait until it has finish grooming itself. Cats will finish first their grooming activity after moving to their next daily activity, which can be eating, sleeping, playing, or drinking. 

If your cat is very vocal, it will tell you that it dislikes you touching or petting them while it grooms itself. Either your pet cat will move away, scratch you, meow loud, or give you a more obvious warning. You should avoid doing this. However, if you still touch or pet your cat while it grooms itself, nature has a way of correcting these things. 

Should I Discipline My Cat If It Groom Itself On Top Of You?

What if your cat not only groom itself around you but also on top of you? Should you discipline your cat if it starts to groom itself on top of you?

The answer is no! You should not discipline your cat for grooming itself on top of you. Disciplining your cat is not an effective method. The reason why is because you rarely get the results you want to happen, especially if it is a negative reinforcement. 

Let us say for example your shout at your cat. If your pet cat hears you shout at it, it is not clever enough to understand your frustration and anger. Your pet cat will only see you as a random owner that shouts loudly or as a loud sound of television that your pet cat hates. If you shout at your cat often, it will just make them more scared of you rather than follow and love you. 

If you badly want your cat to stop doing things that you hate, you can execute some positive reinforcement instead of negative reinforcement, like giving your cat some treats if your pet cat does something good in your eyes. This tactic is more powerful than shouting at your cat excessively. 

Is It Safe If My Cat Groom Itself On Top Of Me?

If you ask if it is safe if your pet cat grooms itself on top of you, the answer is yes. It is safe if your cat grooms on top of you! However, if your cat starts to lick or groom you while executing it, there is a high chance that your pet cat could ingest what is on your skin. Let us say you put some lotion on your skin. If your cat licks you, your cat will ingest it, and that is not safe. 

So, it is not encouraged to let your pet cat lick you, especially if you put some ointment on your skin. Sometimes you might forget that you put something on your skin. That is why you have to prevent your cat from licking or grooming you. 

Could Your Cat Lick You While It Grooms Itself?

There is a high chance that your pet cat licks you while it grooms itself, especially if your pet cat is just around you and loves you very much. If this action happens, it is often an honor. It means that your pet cat sees you as a trusted person that deserves to be groomed. It is also the way of your cat marking you.

Final Thoughts

To conclude, cats clean themselves around you because your cat is already comfortable with you and trusts you so much. You must not stop your cat from grooming itself around you unless your pet cat blocks your path or if your pet cat’s hair is constantly falling on your couch or bed.

Source: hillspet.com

Marian Haaz
Marian is a cat adoption expert. She has rescued and adopted several cats herself and helped find homes for dozens of stray cats and dogs.
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