Some cats purr loud and clear, causing quite a stir in the room while others seem to be too shy to express themselves. But there are a few tips to make your cat purr or at least, try. If your cat is reluctant, don’t force it; like humans, cats do have their own natural rhythm and like to do things accordingly.
How does the purr occur?
Feline’s unique purr has been and remained a deep conundrum for the scientific world. Initially people used to think cats have an anatomically unique part designed for purring. Further studies on the cat’s anatomy busted this thesis and made scientists come up with another one; the purr is caused by the vibrations of the larynx muscles. The rapid dilatation and contraction of the glottis cause vibrations in the inhaled and exhaled air, producing the purr. It is a low frequency sound and humans can only hear part of it.
Some cats purr to advertise their happiness and communicate with other creatures, humans included. But apparently cats also purr to relieve pain; ill or serious wounded cats are often heard purring. This promoted the idea that the purr is also therapeutic and has healing properties due to its special, low frequency. You can learn how to understand your cat’s purr by looking at other body signs like an erect tail or half-closed eyes, which are accompanies by the “happy state” purr.
Feed her some catnip
Yes, you heard me right. Research has shown that 70% of cats are likely to be affected after eating catnip. There are no harms to taking catnip but your cat will be purring out of relaxation for at least 30 minutes.
How else can you make her purr?
Some cat owners are worried because their cat does not purr or it seldom does and they think the cat is not happy or is suffering. A vet check is the only certain method to detect any disease, if your cat may have, as cats often tend to mask their pain. After you get the green signal from the vet, you can try to make your cat purr more often.
Remember that a cat’s purr can sometimes be “mute” but you will be able to feel a slight vibration below the cat’s chin. First step to make your cat purr is to find a moment when you are in a calm, relaxed and assertive state. Any anxiety will be transmitted to your cat in less than a blink of an eye, so pick the right moment for you.
Take your cat in your arms and place it on a comfy bed or couch. Make sure you are alone with the cat; no kids screaming around, no TV on, no other animals to distract you two. If your cat tries to escape from your hands, let her go. If she is in the mood she will soon find a comfy spot. Start grooming your cat and bring her a snack. Her favorite blanket or toy also works fine.
Gently rub and scratch your cat’s chin, under-chin area and cheeks. Each cat has its own golden rub areas and you must discover them by yourself. Hint, the areas the cat is rubbing on solid, harsh surfaces. From now on, it’s just a matter of time until your cat will start purring. From time to time you can check her under-chin to feel any sign of vibrations.