Cat Tails Tell Tales
Welcome to the tales of cat tails!
Our tails can move quickly or slowly. A flicking or lashing tail indicates we are agitated, while a slowly waving tail indicates that we are focused on something (i.e., about to pounce or run rampant).
The tail straight up with a slight curve at the end is a signal that the cat is approaching amicably. This posture is also a common way us cats greet you hoomans.
- What it means: Confident, happy
- How you should react: Offer playtime, cuddles/treats
Tail curled at the top like a question mark
- What it means: Friendly
- How you should react: Offer your hand for sniffing or a pet
- What it means: Agitated or aggressive
- How you should react: Don’t try to engage with us. Let us work it out.
Tail Curved beneath the body
- What it means: Nervous and/or submissive
- How you should react: Do nothing. Wait for us to come to you.
- What it means: Frightened, agitated, angry
- How you should react: Leave us alone! Save yourself!
Tail whipping back and forth
- What it means: Fearful, angry, aggressive
- How you should react: It's really just best to leave us alone at this point.
Tail slowly swaying from side to side/twitching
- What it means: Focused on something
- How you should react: Let us get to doing what we're going to do
Here is me after a bath - notice my tail curved to my side, I was feeling a little nervous at this point of my life...but I certainly understood because I puked in my kennel on the way home from the vet and I stunk bad!
Here are Tizzy and cousin Missy - notice how she is in a submissive state and Tizzy has a puffed tail, indicating he is pissed! After all, she DID come into OUR house, which is OUR territory!
Me helping catdad with some car repairs (or at least offering some advice). Tail curved up, feeling very confident, happy and friendly.
This photo speaks for itself! I was pretty confident I got busted! LOL
My tail is down here, but I was chillaxin'. This downward tail is pretty submissive, lazy and relaxed.
This here is the beloved "donut" pose. During this time, we are typically dead asleep dreaming of the squirrels...all body parts tucked in for security and warmth
An afternoon at the office. I was confident looking for that mid-day snack!
There is really no other place I would like to be than in the sun. Here my tail tells you I am beyond comfortable. Warm, relaxed, no worries at all!
Tizzy was serious about this scratch! Tail down, deep concentration and agitated because I was picking on him.