Now you might be of the opinion that there is nothing to learn about petting a cat. Just a tap or a rub on the back should do the trick. However, and I hate to tell you this, this is not the case with a cat. Cats, unlike dogs, do not like to be petted at all times, and they have some particular places or spots where and only where they like to be touched. In fact, if you think you can just do it your way, do remember that cats are found to even go to the length of scratching and biting if they do not like your speed or skill!
Cats are very particular creatures. You must know that the Egyptians worshipped cats once upon a time. Now, you might have forgotten or overlooked this but, trust me, they surely have not. So, the first thing that you should do before petting a cat is to make it clear to your feline companion that you are seeking permission to touch it.
First things first, I think you should let your cat sniff you for as long as it wants to so that it can be comfortable with your touching it. Remember, in all other cases, it is you that adopts the pet. However, with cats, it is the other way around; cats adopt you, and they can be really exacting!
Now, what you should do is extend a finger and allow the cat to rub its nose against your fingertips. More often than not, it will show no interest in sniffing your hand, and instead stare at you suspiciously or with utter disregard. This is a way of their saying, “Back off, I am not in a mood!”
You should never, at this point, try to pet it for it will definitely be against its will, and you might just be awarded with a scratch or a bruise. All you can do is wait for your cat to be in a better mood. Another thing to remember is that you cannot always be lucky with cats. Some cats just are not friendly. They do not like to be petted, and if, sadly, you have brought home such a grumpy soul, it would be in your best interest to let it be. However, if the cat, exhibiting an unexplained change of mood, sniffs your hand and rubs its chin or one side of its head against your hand or any part of your body, there is a slight chance that your pet expects to be petted. If that happens, open your palms and touch its body in a gentle fashion.
You should be gentle with your cat at all times, because your feline companion approves of it. Your fingertips are nonpareil. Now you need to know about some pleasure spots in your cat’s body. Not all parts of your pet are open to your touch, mind it. If you go on, however lightly, touching it all over, be confident that you are about to be bruised badly. The most viable spot to pet is the area between or behind the ears in a back-to-front- movement.
Now, if you are a stranger in a friend’s place who incidentally has a cat, and you have heard hilarious stories about how friendly it is, do not, under any circumstances , try to check out for yourself. You must remember that however friendly a cat is, it does not like to be touched by strangers. You need to acquire the trust of a cat before daring to pet it!
The forehead is another good place to begin with. With your fingertips or the palm of your hand, pet the forehead and then, gently, travel along the length of the forehead to the base of tail and repeat. Massage the muscles in the neck by applying a little pressure. Once the car is warmed up, you might try using your middle finger and thumb simultaneously stroke the cat’s moustache, which however is a daring attempt and I advise you to try this only after the cat has become quite comfortable with you.
While the shaft of the moustache and the forehead has musk glands that give pleasure when stroked, you cannot ignore the other parts of your pet. For getting it to like you, you must dig deeper, and wider! To do that, you should start by running the palm of your hand gently from the neck and along the back all the way, until you reach the tail. Do not, under any circumstances, touch the tail, for your cat would not like it. Now, if your cat likes what you are doing, it will arch its back and expect you to apply more pressure. When you start over, it might even rub its forehead against your hand in a pressing way to encourage you to do it again. However, if you notice your cat cowering away or covering your ears, or simply trying to walk away, then you should probably stop petting it.
There are sundry ways of petting a cat but what you have to remember is that you must pay attention to its reaction to what you are doing.