Cats are known for their grooming habits, and it is not uncommon to see them licking themselves to clean their fur. However, you may have also observed cats licking each other. This behavior may seem strange to us humans, but it is a common practice among cats.
So, why do cats lick each other?
- Social Bonding
Cats are social creatures and use grooming as a way to bond with other cats. When one cat licks another, it can be a sign of affection and friendship. This behavior is more common among cats that live together in the same household and have formed a close bond.
- Marking Territory
Cats have scent glands on their face and tongue, and when they lick another cat, they are leaving their scent behind. This scent serves as a territorial marker and can help establish dominance within a group of cats.
Just like how cats groom themselves to keep their fur clean, they also groom each other. This is especially common among cats that have difficulty cleaning certain areas of their body, such as the back of the neck or the ears. Cats that live in the wild may also groom each other to remove blood or other scents that could attract predators.
- Bonding Between Mother and Kitten
When a mother cat licks her kittens, it serves several purposes. First, it helps to keep the kittens clean and stimulates their bowel movements. It also helps to bond the mother and her kittens and create a sense of security for the young kittens.
- Comfort and Relaxation
Licking can also be a calming behavior for cats, and they may lick each other to reduce stress and anxiety. This behavior is especially common in cats that are closely bonded and spend a lot of time together.
Now that you know cats lick each other for a variety of reasons, including social bonding, marking territory, cleaning, bonding between mother and kitten, and for comfort and relaxation. This behavior is a normal and natural part of a cat's social and grooming behavior, and it should not be a cause for concern unless it becomes excessive or leads to skin irritation.
Pet Grooming Tool - 2 Sided Undercoat Rake for Cats Dogs brush
When your cats have grooming needs, you can also use the grooming brush to help them clean and calm themselves just like their cat buddies do!