Do Cats Miss You?

Many people wake up and get ready for work.  They pat their kitty on the head, refill their food and water, and head out to face the day. But while you are away from home, the following question may come to mind. Do cats miss you when you're gone?  Let’s explore a series of questions to better understand if cats miss you.

What Kind Of Behavior Marks A Cat Missing Another Cat Or Their Human?

There isn't much difference that has been observed concerning whether or not cats miss us. Cats spend most of their time asleep. When they're not sleeping they are either grooming, playing, or eating. Some cats, however, do seem to show a little more affection once their human has returned, but that is not to say with complete certainty that they missed you. It all boils down to the cat as an individual. For instance, you may care for three cats in your household and go on vacation for a week. When you return, only one of them seems to show affection. That doesn't mean the other two cats don't care about you. It simply means they do not rely on your presence to feel secure. Moreover, the other two cats may not have shown you all that much affection to begin with.

The same can also be said about whether or not cats miss other cats in the household. They may initiate a kind of greeting to one another, and inspect any new smells that may have been picked up. But, cats really don't depend on anyone or anything for survival. Although they may enjoy the company we give them, they simply don't feel the need to socialize as dogs might. Furthermore, cats are very independent even in the wild. They do live in social groups, but even then, they don't depend on the group for food or shelter. The group setting is more about seeing other cats having found a good spot to rest and hide, so I'll hang around here too. If danger were to appear, most cats would certainly go their own way.

What Scientific Research Has Been Done On Cats Being Separated From Humans?

Scientist at the University of Lincoln did a study observing twenty cats that had been placed in an unfamiliar environment. The study was to monitor any changes in the attention each individual cat sought out, changes in the level of passive behavioral content, and any distress that may have outwardly been observed due to the absence of their caregiver.

The Results

Well, the results were pretty much conclusive that cats really do not need their human to feel secure. One interesting observation that the scientist noted was that most cats, in fact, did show more vocalization when the owner left them with a stranger than when the cat was with their owner. But no conclusive additional evidence was observed as to whether or not the distress was due to separation. It was more likely due to the fact that the cat was not familiar with the new individual. It is considered more likely that the extra vocalization could be closely translated as an expression to get away from me rather than calling out for their original caregiver.

Does The Amount Of Time You Are Gone Affect Your Cat?

To get straight to the answer, yes it does. Although scientists have confirmed that cats don't necessarily need us to survive per se, they do still enjoy the love and attention we give them. It is important to note that cats, like dogs, can also suffer from separation anxiety.

Cats do not present the same separation issues as a dog might. They don’t howl, tear up the house, and beat at the front door to go find you. Even though cats are much more subtle about their anxiety, it is still a big health issue. Signs your cat may be afflicted include not eating, refusal to use the litter box, and excessive meowing.

Although cats do fine without human interaction, you should have someone refill their food and water if you plan on being away for more than a day or two.  Moreover, the brief interaction between your cat and the caretaker could help avoid unnecessary stress that may develop in your cat. While you are away for longer periods of time, your cat can get into all kinds of trouble. They can get stuck in a closet, hung up in the blinds, or even eat something poisonous. So it is recommended to have someone check on them daily to make sure they are doing fine.  If you need more information about cat sitting options when you are away, read our cat sitting article to learn more about the different options you have for taking care of your cat when you are away.

Whether your cat may or may not miss you when you are away solely depend on the personality of the individual cat. To put it bluntly, some will, and some won't. But for the individuals who do not show outward signs of missing you, keep in mind they still need looking after, and you to love them. That being said, you should feel very good about science proving your cat doesn't miss you. But, the fact that they are still around you shows they actually like being with you.

Petozy is a brand dedicated to pet and pet owner happiness. The about cats section contains silly articles about cat memes to more serious articles about cat play behaviorSearch our articles to see if we can help you with your cat related questions. Or sign-up for our newsletter if you want to get updates when new articles or products are released.

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