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Why do cats wag their tails while lying down?

Cats have unique and complete body language, which, at first glance, may seem very simple but hides the key to a good and harmonious relationship between humans and cats. Have you ever wondered what your cat wants to tell you when it wags its tail? And why do cats wag their tails while lying down?

A cat’s tail is not just an ornament. It fulfills essential functions, such as helping maintain balance, and allows the cat to express many emotions. Every time your cat wags its tail, it may want to tell you different things. Please pay a little attention to the context, and you will be able to figure out the message.

Why do cats wag their tails while lying down?

Unlike dogs, cats don’t wag their tails as often or energetically as excited doggies, so it’s especially curious when they do it. And while you may be thrilled when your cat wags its tail, it doesn’t always mean it’s happy to see you – it may be the opposite. Here are the top five reasons why a cat may wag its tail while lying down, resting, and relaxed, which raises even more questions.

why do cats wag their tails while lying down - happy cat

1. Happy cat

Cats are excellent at letting us know when they are angry, but they are a bit timider when showing us when they are happy. A cat sitting or resting slowly and calmly wagging its tail or tail tip is a blissful and comfortable kitty. For example, if you are petting your cat or if she is lying in the sun, she may wag her tail to show her contentment. These movements are usually very discreet and are not constant, but you will catch a wag or two with luck.

And if you were wondering what a happy cat looks like while walking, that is a little easier to spot because the cat will have its tail very straight and pointing to the sky. I’m sure you can remember when you came back home, and your cat greeted you at the door – yes, just with that posture, she was happy to see you!

2. Playful cat

A cat lying down or in a pouncing position wagging its tail from side to side, is a cat that has a playful attitude. It is inviting another cat or perhaps you to join in its play. Although it could be mistaken for an attack position, the key is to see that his body looks relaxed and the tail hairs are not frizzy, so if the cat is pouncing, it will only be to initiate a play flight or to chase his catnip mouse. That tail swishing is like a smile. Your cat is having a good time and a lot of fun.

3. Sleepy cat

If your cat is wagging its tail while sleeping, it is most likely dreaming. Yes, cats also dream about everyday things. For example, they may dream that they run and climb trees, that they catch a bug, or even that you cook them the most delicious dinner in the world. So if your cat is wagging its paws or tail while sleeping, she may be dreaming that she is going hunting.

why do cats wag their tails while lying down - sleepy cat

4. Angry cat

If your cat is lying down and wagging his tail too fast, too hard, or wagging it in an arched fashion, beware; your cat may be very frustrated or annoyed with you. Cats are known for their lack of patience, it isn’t uncommon to imagine that a cat may be angry, and the reasons are endless.

Perhaps a noise has put him in a bad mood, he doesn’t want to be petted, or he is just hungry. It is easy to identify this movement because it is a strong movement usually accompanied by a growl or hiss. An angry cat may even thump its tail against the ground to intimidate, so it is preferable not to approach or try to touch it.

5. Scared cat

You can tell a frightened cat by its tail, as it will go from its normal state to a bristly tail that appears to have increased in size and thickness. Cats do this to appear larger and more imposing and to ward off what frightens them, so it is not uncommon that in addition to bristling the tail, they will wag it to intimidate further.

What does the position of a cat’s tail say?

Now you know that a cat lying down and wagging its tail is not necessarily a happy cat that invites you to carry it and pet it. It can mean many things. Sometimes you see a cat wagging the tip of its tail while lying down. Just the tip. What does it mean?

why do cats wag their tails while lying down - positions

It is always a good idea to research what cats’ postures mean because we can only understand them better and give them the care they need. Here are other cat tail poses that can help you crack your cat’s secret body language code.

  • Tail pointing upwards: happy, relaxed, and friendly cat.
  • Ruffled tail pointing upwards: annoyed cat.
  • Tail stretched horizontally: curious cat.
  • Tail encircling the body forward: attentive cat.
  • Tail encircling the body backward: offended cat.
  • Tail hugging the body: frightened or worried cat.
  • Tail stretched horizontally and arched upwards: cautious cat, attack position.

Why do cats wag their tails while lying down? The bottom line

Now you know that when a cat wags its tail while lying down, it doesn’t always mean that it’s happy; it can mean several things. If you want to know more about your feline friend, pay attention to its posture and the position of its tail, as this will give you many clues about how it is feeling.

Cats are very expressive creatures, and although they may not be able to tell us in words what they feel, their tails say it all. So next time your cat wags its tail while lying down, take a good look at its body language and figure out what it is trying to tell you. Does your cat wag its tail while lying down? What do you think it means? Let us know in the comments!

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