Wondering why your cat reaches their paw out to you and looks at you with their piercing eyes?
That’s a funny cat habit, but you might be curious if it means anything.
Fortunately, we’re here to unravel this mysterious cat behavior with 8 unbelievable reasons why your cat reaches their paw out to you.
Just keep on reading.
8 Reasons Why Your Cat Reaches Their Paw Out to You
There’s something magical about cat paws. It’s the only logical explanation of why we can’t resist massaging these cute toenails whenever we have the chance.
Joking aside, cats often use paws to communicate with humans. Think about it for a second.
While we can never be 100% sure what goes through a cat’s mind, we’ve got 8 guesses what your kitty wants when they reach out a paw to you. Let’s see them.
#1 I Want Your Food
Does your cat reach their paw out to you while you’re holding food?
Then your clever feline wants to have a bite or is trying to steal a piece from your plate.
It doesn’t matter what you’re holding and if it’s something your cat will eat.
Your kitty has to check to make sure that they aren’t missing out something delicious.
Think about your cat’s reaching paw as a gentle reminder that you have to share.
If you refuse to do it, your kitty might use other tactics to distract you until they can grab a piece.
However, let me issue a warning about spoiling your cat
Related: How To Spoil Your Cat
Related: How To Spoil Your Cat.
If you share your food with your cat, you’ll be sharing it for the rest of your life. There would be no escaping the grabby paws or the insistent meowing.
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Moreover, human food has ingredients that can irritate your cat’s stomach. So, it’s not a good idea to give your cat food scraps.
#2 I’m Just Stretching
Cats are remarkably flexible creatures that could sleep in contorted positions or pretend to be a bread loaf without getting uncomfortable.
But sooner or later, cats have to stretch to get their muscles moving.
Sometimes, before or after a good stretch, you might notice that your cat extends a paw.
In such situations, it might seem as if your feline is trying to reach you, but they’re just doing their daily dose of exercise.
All you can do in these situations is admire your cat’s agility and be a little jealous that they can sleep all day while you have to work.
#3 I Need Attention
Cats might have a reputation for being aloof and independent, but they still need attention and can be miserable or jealous when you neglect them.
If you’ve been ignoring your cat, you might notice that they’ll do all sorts of cute things to attract your attention.
Some cats might lick your hair, attack your legs, or lie on top of you to express that they’re lonely and want company Others might get as far as to bite your fingers, pee outside the litterbox, or chew on your computer’s cord.
Reaching a paw out to you might be how your cat tries to attract your attention without being too demanding.
But if you continue to ignore your cat, your kitty might get obsessed with you. That’s why you should ensure that you spend some quality time with your feline every day.
#4 I Require a Petting
Does your cat love it when you pet them and cuddle them close? Your kitty might reach a paw out to you because your feline wants you to pick them up and pet them.
If you have such an affectionate cat, they might remind you that it’s cuddle time by reaching out with their paw towards you.
You’d better comply, or your cat might find another person to snuggle.
#5 It’s Time to Play
Being in a playful mood might be another reason why your cat reaches their paw out to you. While cats are good at entertaining themselves, they might want you to join in the fun.
After all, it gets boring to run around the house or push things on the ground.
If you’ve seen kittens playing, you might notice how one kitten will poke the others with a paw to make them get up.
Your kitten might try to engage you in the same way when they want a company for their games.
While it might be cute to let your kitten bat at your arm or “attack” your hands, you shouldn’t encourage it. It can turn into a problem when they grow up.
#6 I Want Something
Since cats don’t speak our language, they have to come with crafty ways to make us do their bidding.
Reaching out a paw might be your cat’s way to attract your attention before expressing their desires.
For example, your cat might reach their paw out to you and then go to the door.
That’s a clear sign that you have to get up and open the door.
#7 I’m Mad At You/ I Like You
I’ve heard owners say that a cat might reach with a paw to show affection. However, if you’ve noticed how cats interact, you’ll see that they rarely express their love by petting other animals.
Licking your face/hair, rubbing on your legs, scratching, and biting are signs that your cat loves you.
But when a cat reaches out a paw and hit you, they’re probably mad or anxious about something.
It’s all about body language. If your cat’s tail is swishing back and forth and they sit and stare at you, a reaching paw isn’t a good sign.
However, if your cat gently pats you, they might be showing how much they love you or your kitty simply wants you to get up and feed them.
#8 I’m Hurt
Does your cat keep their paw in the air out of the blue?
Then your kitty might be hurt, and they’re reaching their paw out to you so that you can help them.
While cats are excellent climbers and jumpers, they can be clumsy and fall badly.
Pulled muscles, a sprained paw, or nerve damage might lead to problems with the leg.
You should get your cat to the vet if you notice that they’re holding a paw in the air more than usual.
As you can see, if your cat reaches their paw out to you, it can have many meanings.
It’s also possible that we’re reading too much into a simple gesture, and it doesn’t mean anything.
Or your cat is messing with you to see how much they can freak you out.
What do you think about these 8 reasons why a cat reaches their paw out to you? Does your cat ever do it? Share your ideas in the comment section.
I’ve grown up surrounded by animals – dogs, cats, cows, goats, sheep, and horses and that has shaped me into what I am today – a crazy cat lady who always has a place for one more cat (or a dog). I’ve got two female cats – Kitty and Roni, and two tomcats – Blacky and Shaggy, but I also feed my neighbors’ cats when they come for a visit. I just can’t say no to them.
I discovered that writing is my vocation early in my school years. Since then I’ve taken part in several literature contests – writing horror and fantasy short stories and novellas.
For the past three years, I’ve been an ELS teacher, pouring my heart into showing children and teenagers how important English is for their future and trying to educate them how to treat their pets with care.