General Question

gailcalled's avatar

When Milo rolls on his back and bats his front paws at me, is that an invitation to play?

Asked by gailcalled (54644points) July 28th, 2008

He gets quite frisky and does a lot of calisthenics. Is it simply fun, an exercise unit for both of us, or agression?

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17 Answers

lefteh's avatar

For my cats, it means “I want to playyy!”

gailcalled's avatar

Oh, good. Thanks, lefteh. I feel very relieved. Waiting eagerly for syz now.

allengreen's avatar

Is this question metaphorical?

syz's avatar

It’s play, but be careful. Overstimulation can turn play to aggression. Have you tried one of those “fishing poles” with a feather/furry thing onthe end? That way body parts are safely out of range.

My cats also love the laser pointer (excellent aerobic exercise when they chase it up and down the hall).

lefteh's avatar

Yeah, it can easily turn into biting and scratching. However, my cats rarely do that anymore. Instead of squirting them or yelling at them, I would simply walk away when that happened. Soon enough, they realized that if they bit me or scratched me they didn’t get to play anymore.

Seesul's avatar

It either means he wants to play, and/or trusts you so much he wants his tummy rubbed. Our other two blues would never grab, but with our kitten, we have to be careful.

The other two loved almost dog rubbing style, this one we tread very softly and gently and the minute she grabs, we back off.

It is a sign of trust, I’ve heard if they show their bellies at all, very vulnerable move on the cat’s part.

gailcalled's avatar

syz: M hates his bought-and-paid-for toys. My feet, leather eyeglass case or shoelaces are appealing. And I don’t let it go on for very long. We just had a little session and now he is curled up in his tiny (much smaller than he) “cranky box” sound asleep.

Daughter warned me against tummy rubbing. If I tried it, I’d probably be on the road with my thumb out and the “Going to Vancouver?” sign.

Seesul's avatar

@lefteh, yeah, we’re working on your theory. This morning I was awoken by a “playful?” big toe bite THROUGH a down blanket, followed by warpspeedcat bounding through every corner of the house and bouncing off the walls. She can take the entire sem-spiral staircase like Superman, in a single bound.

@gail: IF you still had a thumb. Glad to see he’s still keeping you in line.

gailcalled's avatar

@see; ready for my evening laugh, after going 6 rounds with ag.

@syz: I am really tired of spending money on this guy for objects he ignores. Will you guarentee that all cats like laser lights?

syz's avatar

Nope, can’t promise it. Sorry. But if it does work, it’s great, ‘cause you can just sit in your chair and wear him out.

allengreen's avatar

@sorry gail, I must have some fatalistic flaw that compels me to want heated exchanges….If you knew me you would know that I’m harmless like a pussycat——i did tell you I live with 4 women, right?

Still think this thread is metiphorical, all this talk of toys and lights and bounding though the house…..

gailcalled's avatar

No, sometimes a cat is simply a cat, unless he is Milo and has superpowers. When I want to be metaphorical, you won’t have to guess, I promise you.

susanc's avatar

Yes, seesul is right, he trusts you enough to expose his soft underbelly. It’s a trap. If he wants his tummy rubbed really a lot, he’ll court you till it’s safe safe safe.

I rub my guy’s tummy with impunity, but I’ve had him since he was a baby, and washed his bottom when he was too young to deal with infant diarrhea, so I’m his momma, and he’s not guarded with me, not one inch of him. You and Milo have an adult relationship. Luxuriate, but be courteous and alert.

La_chica_gomela's avatar

TimothyKinney says that “Any time a cat shows you its tummy I don’t think it’s a sign of aggression”

(He’s kind of a cat expert. He was raised by cats like Romulus and Remus were raised by the she-wolf.)

Yesican's avatar

I havent read all the answers however when a cat is asking for“belly love” he/she is allowing you to show it hierarchy , that you are the submissive to it’s dominant. Thats why when a cat is maturing it is best to not rub its belly to much, makes for an aggressive cat . To be sure if your kitty is a lil gnarly(or even if it’s not) it’s good practice to grab the back of it’s neck skin with a playful tug every once (I am not a cat but this does hurt the animal)in a while, this allows the kitty to feel guided and loved in parental way, may help you with the scratching post Q I believe you asked as well.

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