Why Does My Cat Lick Me?

We all love our cats—from their cute little bit paws to their sometimes inscrutable facial expressions.

You are watching: Why does my cat lick me in the middle of the night

On the various other hand, you might wonder around some of the points they carry out. I expect, is it really necessary to attempt to range a wall surface only to fall on their butts, or to yank your favorite teddy off of the shelf a thousand times a day? Here's an additional age-old question: "Why does my cat lick me all the time?"

Tbelow are many different possible answers, and it is approximately you to recognize which one fits your cat.


Have you ever before wondered simply why your kitten licks you so much? Perhaps it's because they think you are THEIR pet!

By Kenichi by means of Flickr

1. She's Grooming You

One of the many kind of reasons that our cats lick us is bereason they are grooming us. Cats are infamous bathers! They love to lounge for hours at a time while just bathing and napping the day away. Cats are very clean pets, as you can most likely tell by their neat appearance and also well-kept coats. For the the majority of part, there is never a single hair out of place!

Cats will certainly also rotate this attention to us. Kit10s and also cats tend to be social groomers; that is, they love to groom their household members. They lick us bereason they desire us to be clean and also healthy also. They will certainly generally try to bite and also pull off any type of foreign object on your body. This might be a ring, a sock, or even a mole. Should your cat groom you, you have to take it as a sign that they treatment for your well being. Then again, many of us may take it as a sign that our cats are informing us, "PHEW! You're stinky and require a bath!"


Kitties love to lick! Tbelow are many type of feasible factors why they might be doing this.

By Jacob using Flickr

2. You Taste Good

Of course, this one could be a provided. If you taste like a delicious steak, your cat is going to desire to lick you- specifically if you were not courteous enough to share a few bites through him or her! Kittens and also cats love our food simply as a lot as your dog does. If they don't gain the chance to have any, they will rekind to the following best option: acquiring a taste from you! Kitties might lick your fingers or face to view what they were lacking out on, and will certainly additionally lick your apparel if you dropped food on yourself. Don't worry though: these quick tastes won't be enough to injury your cat if you're worried about them ingesting huguy food.

3. It's a Survival Strategy

Cats are accustomed to bathing after eating in order to remove any type of proof of food. It's a survival strategy to fend off predators! Therefore, it is fairly feasible that your kitty is trying to aid defend you from predators by ridding you of any type of meal proof.

4. Your Kitten Is Lonely

"Does my kitten lick me because she's lonely?" This is fairly possible! Grooming (licking each other) is a really prevalent social activity among cats. It is their favorite means to bond with each various other, other than stampeding via the residence together while terrorizing your breakables. When a kitten or a cat begins to feel lonely, they are going to try to groom and play. If you are amethod from residence regularly (perhaps work or school), it is rather feasible that your kitty just needs even more bonding time. In this case, the finest method to react is to "groom" her. You can execute this by brushing the cat, petting her, or by scratching the kitty's favorite scratch spots (typically situated behind the ears and also at the tail base). Ensure that your cat or kitten gets sufficient attention; and also if nopoint else, get a playmate for the kitty!


Leave the TV on

Hire a pet sitter

Use a treat dispenser

Get one more kitten to be a playmate

Leave your favorite music playing while you're out

Invite household or friends to visit

5. Anxiety

Cats will overgroom as a result of tension, which might lug on over to you, the owner. If you notice that your cat has actually been off its rocker lately, then stress and anxiety can just be the cause. Moving to a brand-new residence, obtaining a new roommate, moving the furniture, and even a adjust in diet can bring on an stress problem. Try to recognize any type of difficulty resulting in factors that may be in the kitty's environment if you think this could be the cause. No one likes to be stressed out or anxious; particularly animals!

Why Are Cat Tongues So Rough and also Spiky?

Cats and also kit10s have actually rough-looking tongues. They seem to have actually numerous spikes on them, a lot favor the bristles of a boar bristle brush. This bristly structure of the cat tongue (the bristles are actually papillae) is made up of backward-encountering taste buds that are actually a tool for survival. They are supplied to deep clean the coat, while additionally helping them to eat. They assist the cat to rerelocate flesh from bones (not a widespread incident for the contemporary house cat) and also help them to remove food and debris from their coats. These papillae on the cats' tongues additionally help cats to drink. Believe it or not, they don't just dunk their tongues right into the water and swallow whatever before water is took in. Instead, their tongues are capable of yanking water upwards into a miniature column of water, and then they cshed their mouths conveniently approximately the water. How cool is that!?

How Much Licking Is Too Much Licking?

Sometimes, our wonderful kitties may start to lick too a lot. At first, we could not even notice it. All we see is an adorable kitten bathing in the sunlight or a kitty that might be licking some messy spills from the night's meal off of our garments. Unfortunately, tbelow is a point where licking becomes too much and also unhealthy and balanced. How and why does this happen?

When your cat begins to spfinish an extreme amount of time licking itself or you (let's say 30 minutes to an hour or even more per session), it have to collection off a red flag. After a while of licking, your skin will become irritated. If the cat is only licking itself excessively, you might notification a thinning coat on your cat or also bald spots. As the difficulty intensifies you will certainly more than likely watch irritated patches of skin that may even bleed or become infected.

Tright here are numerous primary causes for this issue:

AnxietySkin irritation or allergiesParasites

Anxiety triggers cats to compulsively clean; tension might be a component of a cat's personality or it have the right to be as a result of eco-friendly stress. Skin irritations, allergies, and parasites deserve to all cause itching or odd sensations on the cat's skin, enticing the cat to eliminate the problem the finest method it knows how: licking and also scratching! For a lot of of these worries, a veterinarian deserve to prescribe drugs. Yes, tbelow are anxiety and also allergy medicines available to pets!

This article is accurate and also true to the ideal of the author’s expertise. It is not intended to substitute for diagnosis, prognosis, therapy, prescription, or formal and also individualized advice from a veterinary clinical skilled. Animals exhibiting indications and symptoms of distress have to be watched by a veterinarian automatically.


Cats are cute on April 30, 2020:

Tright here is a typo

Tbelow are 2 factor #4's and also no reason #5

not david on March 26, 2020:

you lied to me it sassist 5 reasons

Frannie-Cakes on December 07, 2019:

"i lick my cat bereason she purrs once i execute it"


Lmao! Does anybody else see that comment?! How am I the initially to say something?! 16 months earlier lmaooo.

Great short article by the way! Thank you.

Kandy the Ferret on August 11, 2019:

My cat requirements numerous attention, yet she loves grooming me likewise. Although she doesn’t lick me a lot anymore.

Risandi jayasekara on June 09, 2019:

I lick to do


Dont have to know on November 04, 2018:

My cat licks me so a lot and also purrs I had actually him for two months he Is 7 weeks he’s adorable yet he’s a bad cat

He also has actually “wobbly cat syndrome”

His ago legs don’t work

So he drops when he walks or runs

He runs like a bunny

someone on July 22, 2018:

i lick my cat because she purrs as soon as i carry out it

Yes I do on May 20, 2018:

To donald duckling:

My cat which I have actually for 9 years occasionally does the exact same, she does love to have incredibly sharp claws, maybe that's the reason she periodically involves me for grooming

donald duckling on March 07, 2018:

I have owned/been owned by cats all my life and I have actually a distinctive (for me) situation in the licking department. One of my cats, LB, does this licking of my hands and also then rubbing himself on it......trying to acquire me to 'groom' him. Not sure if this is due to the truth that he was uncovered in the woods through his siblings as a kitten or not. I have had actually him for nearly 5 years (his previous owner gave him up to fight a shedding fight with cancer) and he has been anxious cat for 3.5 of the years he has actually been via me......... he's 12 currently. In the last year or 2 considering that he's calmed dvery own a little, he insists that it is my task to 'groom' him by letting him lick my hand also and then having actually me rub the sides of his confront and also body...... over and also over again. He gets brumelted, however that constantly ends with him trying to lick my hand and rub it. I don't have 30 minutes before bed each night to carry out this and it is seriously getting on my nerves. I have actually started to tell him no every time he tries to lick me, but i sort of feel bad for the male. He has one more cat that I adopted 1 month prior to him that will certainly groom him, but he is really intent on having actually me execute it.

I have never had actually this endure before with a cat, even the 2 that I increased from 1 week old. Has anyone else??

donald duckling on March 07, 2018:

marie, save an eye on your cat and the incorrect urination bereason the anxiety might have inflamed his bladder. I have actually a boy that offered to periodically pee on my garments and also then in my bed if I didn't notice the clothing. He had a chronic inflamed bladder which turned into chronic UTIs, for a while it happened every 6 months or so. Once I tuned right into the signs and gave him UTI+ as soon as it began, it got much much better. Now he hasn't had an episode in 1 1/2-2 years. Don't gain upset at him bereason of the peeing, that will certainly just make it worse; it is simply his method of letting you know that somepoint damages.

The factor he is licking/kneading you every night is because it is probably his routine to groom before going to bed.... and he has you in that.

Marie on February 28, 2018:

My cat licks my hands aswell as neading me eexceptionally night for at least 20 minutes before he goes to sleep! He's done this from 2 months old.....

Can anyone tell me why??

Also he wakes me eexceptionally night throughout the night doing whatever he have the right to to piss me off,

About 3 months back he began urinating in the house I discovered out this started after he was struck by one more cat and also was told it was tension related!

I've lugged spray to speak him and also plug in tension relief which functioned for a while then he started agian

Advice substantially appreciated please

anonimoose on February 22, 2018:

My cat is blind, and she accidentally licks me all the moment trying to groom herself

Luis Laureano on August 03, 2017:

Thanks for the info, I had a feeling I was appropriate around my cat grooming and bonding via me. I love my cat called Fatboy ☺

Soul on March 26, 2017:

Joker likes to groom and groom if he did something wrong. Including trying to bite if you pet him.

Beth on November 21, 2016:

I have two cats right rascals they are I just wake up in the middle of the night to uncover my cat trying to lick me lol

Terry h on November 03, 2016:

My oreo licks me and also my hubby all the time and also constantly licks herself too alot she additionally scratches at her ears and shakes her head i wonder if she has actually ear mites and or skin problem doesnt want you to pet her as well much yet she is affectionate i will certainly have to take her to the vet see whats what thanks for the post

Barry Bishop on September 28, 2016:

My endure tells me that licking habits in cats is frequently a dominance habits. I've constantly enabled my cats to lick me as much as I could stand also because it provided them the feeling that while they were doing it, despite their practically full dependence on me, they were "the boss." To my mind, a happy, satisfied cat is the best kind! Thanks for the opportunity to tell about my little Skippy.

Barry Bishop on September 28, 2016:

In the 1980's I had actually a cat that I discovered near fatality in the Minnesota winter through a severed, sevedepend infected paw (captured in a trap?). After he recovered, and also was neutered, he was a major behavior difficulty. He would certainly attack me, biting and also scratching. Famous animal behaviorist Dr. Robert K. Anderboy (U. of MN Vet School , inventor of the Gentle Leader harness) taught me exactly how to train him ("boot camp" style). He ended up being my little bit buddy. He was a compulsive licker, and would lick my arm bald if I let him. I referred to as him Skippy bereason of the way he walked with his ideal front paw lacking. He's been dead over 25 years, I've had actually many type of cats because, yet I still miss out on him.

Eric on July 21, 2016:

I appreciate all the neat information ! My kitty Honey Bear constantly licks me :) She was a rescue and also a tool hair oselection and white tabby and also just saves me from the civilization everyday !

Cheska on April 10, 2016:

My cat has actually bald spots as a result of excessive grooming, she has mites btw and I already took her to the vet for medication. Will my cat's fur grow back?

Amelia on April 10, 2016:

I love your cat

Alex on January 03, 2016:

Yes my male cat George licks me I think out of effection

angryelf (author) from Tennesview on April 29, 2014:

Thank you everyone! I'm glad every one of you gain it! I used to have cats in the past that were significant on licking; however I observed this question somewhere and also chose that it would make an awesome hub :) Thanks for the assistance & interest!

travmaj from australia on April 29, 2014:

My daughter has actually the cats currently, entirely spoiled and also a lot loved. And oh so bossy, they groom us all. Now we know why. Lovely hub and most informative. Thank you.

FlourishAnyway from USA on April 29, 2014:

I rather reap the treatment that they provide me; they deserve to lick all they want to. Good hub!

sheilamyers on April 29, 2014:

The cat I have actually currently doesn't lick me that much, yet last one loved to lick. He'd even lick my toes. YUCK! Generally it was my fingers or hair. He really loved sitting on the ago of my chair and also washing my hair for me. I ask the vet around it and he told me the exact same points you spanned in this article. I'd say Pippen did it for the first three factors you gave. This hub will certainly really assist world learn why cats lick people, specifically those who are first time cat owners.

See more: Get Rid Of First Collection Services From My Credit? Is First Collection Services A Scam

Jennifer Kessner from Pennsylvania on April 29, 2014:

Prince Fredward is the groomer! He's super social, and I wish I had a companion for him. (It can conserve me from some of his baths!)

Sp Greaney from Ireland also on April 29, 2014:

Our previous cats provided to do this quite often, however our current cat just desires to chase butterflies exterior. :)

angryelf (author) from Tennesview on April 28, 2014:

Thank you Peggy! Cats truly are awesome pets, I myself presently have two. They will terrorize our residence all hours of the day and also night... damaging everything within their routes... but I wouldn't profession them for anything! LOL! It's absolutely adorable as soon as they cuddle up and also bathe us. Thanks for jumping in and also searching my little bit ole corner :)

Peggy Woods from Houston, Texas on April 28, 2014:

We have 2 inside cats both of whom were strays. They are a joy and delight. Our female cat Peaches not only grooms Dusty, our male cat, however me as well on occasion. Ha! Up, valuable and also exciting votes.