why do cats wag their tails while lying down
Image source: The Discerning Cat

Cats can wag their tails for different reasons. They might be feeling pain, tired, or they might just want to play. These emotions vary based on which part of their tail is moving. While there is no easy explanation for why a cat may wag its tail while lying down, there are a few possibilities. Here, we’ll see some reasons why cats wag their tails while lying down, and how you can interpret each movement. 

Why Do Cats Wag Their Tails While Lying Down?

Here are some of the most common reasons why cats may wag their tails when lying down, ranging from absolutely harmless to mildly concerning.

#1. They are completely satisfied

A cat sleeping down will occasionally flick its tail just because it is pleased and content at the time. It also frequently indicates that they are at ease.

They may appear extra cute doing this, and they want to reach out and pat your fluffball may be strong, but this is not always an invitation to pets and head rubs. It’s sometimes preferable to grab your phone and shoot a couple hundred shots of them instead.

#2. They’re Sleeping

What do cats fantasize about? Every cat owner has their opinions, but a flick of the tail during a deep, comfortable nap is one of the signs that they’re dreaming.

They may move their legs during a dream, but it is usually subtle, so you may just observe the tip of their tail swinging back and forth involuntarily.

A relaxing pet bed, which is becoming increasingly popular and looks very attractive, will ensure your furball gets the best possible rest. For the more modern kitty, there are hammock beds.

#3. You Have Petted Them

One of the most enjoyable aspects of being a cat owner is falling to cuteness and providing your beautiful feline with all of the pets they could ever want. While cats’ moods can change on a dime, the way they move their tail will tell you if your companion is content to receive your loving touch.

When they love your presence and affection, their tail will wag slowly or thump gently on the ground. Of course, in conjunction with a few other signs. Purring and bending toward your touch are obvious examples.

The wag’s speed, on the other hand, should be noted. Smooth and regular movements indicate a pleased cat, whereas sharp and rapid swishes indicate dissatisfaction. In that scenario, you should leave before you get scratched or chase your pet out of the room.

#4. They Want to Play

When a cat wags its tail while lying on its stomach, it indicates that it is prepared to pounce. Cats, like dogs, engage in a playful “pounce” position. When cats are frisky, they may “chatter” or wriggle their hind end.

Your cat might just stay in that position and never pounce, but it’s a good opportunity to get out the cat toys and spend some time together.

If you happen to be petting them at the time, remove your hand and grab a nearby cat toy, such as a spiral spring or fluttering butterfly. After all, if you’re not quick to notice the change in their mood, an excited cat might just grab your hand instead, and it’ll be scratch-city for you.

If you’re a little too slow and your feline pal gets a few scratches, simply apply an antiseptic wipe to keep any illness at bay and prevent Cat Scratch Disease. In any case, this is an excellent opportunity to spend some quality time with your cat.

#5. They are frustrated

We’ve all had days when we simply want to be left alone, and it turns out that your cat can, too.

If you find your cozy-looking feline swishing their tail in wide arcs while resting down, it could be an indication that they’re upset. They could be grouchy because they were awakened up, or they could be annoyed by anything.

Maybe they’re having a rough day. When they wag their tail in a larger arc (especially when accompanied by modest moans or grunts), it’s their method of signaling to you that they’re in a bad mood. It’s also a method for them to blow off some steam and expend some of their pent-up energy.

You may use one of these treat-distributing toys to help your pet take out some of its frustration. Who knows, maybe they’re just hungry and the snacks will make them feel better!

#6. They are in pain.

Cats dislike admitting to anyone that they are in discomfort. This is due to the fact that they are genetically programmed to prevent larger animals that pose a threat to them from seeing them in a vulnerable state. Unfortunately for cat owners, this makes determining whether your cat genuinely requires assistance difficult.

An involuntary tail wag is one of the telltale signs of your cute kitty’s predicament. If you catch them waving their tail for no apparent reason while lying down, they may not be communicating with you but rather trying to hide something.

It’s difficult to tell whether the cause of the tail twitch is discomfort, but there should be other behavioral cues such as hiding, hostility, or restlessness. If your feline buddy is experiencing any of these symptoms, you should take him or her to the vet for a check-up.

Do Cats Purposefully or Involuntarily Wag Their Tails?

It’s a mix of the two. As previously said, there are numerous reasons why a cat may purposely wag its tail from side to side – usually to communicate with you as its owner. They might wish to show you that they’re happy, that they love you, or that they’re at ease.

If the wagging is caused by negative emotions, it is more likely to be an involuntary response to stimuli. The only exception is if your cat has already displayed unpleasant behavior and has resorted to a tail flick to convey to you that they want to be left alone.

How to Make Your Cat Feel More At Ease

If you notice that your cat’s tail wagging indicates that she is ill, in pain, or terrified, the best thing you can do is make her feel more at ease in your presence. You can do the following:

#1. Create a relaxing setting

Even if you have a huge and lovely home, your kitty may find it overwhelming, especially if she is new. She’ll need time to adjust to her new surroundings, so a minimal amount of space will be enough for now.

Here’s a checklist of things a cat requires to feel at ease:

  • Cat bed that is appropriate
  • The litter box 
  • Food and water bowls
  • Climbing tree or scratching post
  • Numerous toys.

Aside from them, consider the lighting and sound. Make sure the lights are turned down so they aren’t too bright. Reduce the volume of loud music and avoid speaking loudly to avoid startling her.

#2. Make a lot of hiding places.

Nora (Founder of Catademy) suggests that giving cats free access to hiding places is an excellent method for them to cope with stress. Without such opportunities, your cat may become uneasy or even sick in stressful settings.

Hideouts or forts can be built using cave-style beds, open boxes, and tunnels. The use of paper or plastic bags is not recommended since trapped cats can suffocate.

#3. Utilize food to establish trust.

If you have a shy cat, place the food and water bowls in the area where she feels most at ease and leave her alone.

Feed her at regular intervals throughout the day so that she recognizes you as her food supplier. You can also establish trust by providing her with tasty snacks!

#4. Employ smell to enhance your experience.

Cats have a keen sense of smell that is frequently neglected. The use of smell is a cheap and enjoyable way to keep children happy and stress-free!

You can incorporate cat-friendly fragrances into your house in the following ways:

• Your garments or towels

Put your items near their hiding places so they can scent them at their leisure. This will help them become accustomed to your scent so they can recognize you.

• Herbs 

Cat-safe herbs such as oregano, parsley, and rosemary can also be used to stimulate their sense of smell. Catnip, a plant in the mint family, is highly appealing to felines.

For about 2 days, store your cat’s favorite toys in a bag filled with your chosen herb. Your cat can then play with her scented toy!

#5. Make use of interactive toys

You can also stimulate your cat with interactive toys! As a recommendation, while she’s in her hiding place, use fishing pole-type toys to play with her so that there’s some gap between the two of you.

When handling other toys, such as mice or balls, avoid moving toward your cat because she may become defensive. Instead, gently move the item out of her line of sight to pique her interest and make her feel at ease.

#6. Follow your cat’s lead.

Allow your cat to take as much time as she needs to get out of her hiding locations. Even if she does, it’s preferable not to take her up and hold her right away.

This makes her feel more at ease since she will feel in control.

#7. Take her to the veterinarian.

If your cat’s tail wagging is accompanied by other signs of pain or sickness, take her to the veterinarian right once. You’ll be able to determine if there’s a more serious medical condition at work and receive appropriate treatment as soon as possible.

What Does A Cat Flicking Its Tail Mean?

If your cat is flicking her tail back and forth, especially in a rigid manner, she’s probably angry or scared, or stalking prey.

Why Does My Cat Wag Its Tail When I Pet Him?

If you pet your cat and they recognize you by wiggling its tail slightly or wagging its tail while purring, they are feeling secure.

Why Do Cats Bite Gently?

When your cat playfully nibbles you, she is expressing her devotion. This is not the same as a terrified or protective bite intended to do harm, and the sentiments associated with it are also distinct.

Why Do Cats Lift Their Bum When You Pet Them?

Although it may appear as an insult, elevator butt is actually the cat’s extremely positive response to the fact that you’ve struck just the right spot when petting her.

How Does A Cat Show Love?

Cats groom each other to show affection, and this activity will extend to humans once trust is established. Cats frequently lick or allow their owners to brush them. Licking is analogous to grooming their feline companions and helps them to mark each other.

In Conclusion,

Cats wag their tails when lying down for a variety of reasons, ranging from delight to pain to dissatisfaction. In most circumstances, paying attention to the rest of a cat’s body language and sounds is the best method to decode its tail wag. Does it hiss or growl? Playfully following a glitch or a stray thread? Is it unwinding and jerking its tail slightly? All of these cues can help you figure out why your cat’s tail is wagging and what it’s trying to tell you.

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