So Why do Cats Knead Blankets?

Cat Kneading a Blanket

If you are a cat owner you have probably wonder to yourself, why do Cats Knead Blankets?  This behavior is very common in all cat breeds.  You may find yourself watching your pet doing this at bedtime or when you are curled up on the couch with your pet watching TV.  There are actually a few reasons why these animals practice this sometimes bizarre action. Both cats and kittens do this and at times it can get quite aggressive in nature.  So let’s take a look at why these animals take part in this strange ritual.

The act of kneading starts when felines are kittens.  They often do this when they are nursing on their mothers and it is a way to stimulate milk production in the adult animal.  This action is not one that is learned but rather an instinct that they are born with; even the old kittens will do this.  But grown animals no longer nurse, so why do they still feel the need to do this?  While it’s not totally known why these animals do this, many people believe it comforts them.  Another belief is that they do this to show affection to their owners and it is a way of bounding for the animal.

When adult pets do this to your skin sometimes they forget they have long claws.  If you have ever been a victim you will know what I mean.  Sometimes they get carried away and when it happens in the middle of the night it will surely wake you up.  While they aren’t trying to hurt you they can really scratch you up good.  So remember to keep your pet’s nails trimmed if you are going to be sleeping with them at night.

When your pet is getting ready to go to bed for the evening or is about to take a nap, you can often see them pushing their bedding up and down.  This bedtime ritual dates back to their wild roots. When felines in the wild get ready to sleep they almost always knead the ground.  This softens up the area so they can get a better night’s sleep.  So if you ever see your pet doing this before he or she sleeps you will know why they do this strange ritual.

Image via brownpau at

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