When They See You, Why Do Cats Roll Onto Their Backs?
One of the nicest things in the world is seeing your cat fall on their back for you, especially when you see them turn left and right while keeping eye contact.
They move around, tossing and turning, their fluffy tummy teasingly jiggling.
This behavior may astound first-time cat owners or those who never thought cats could be anything except distant and enigmatic.
When they see you, why do cats roll onto their backs?
Although each of our feline friends has their own distinctive characteristics, most cats tend to exhibit some common behaviors.
Although each cat may exhibit similar behavior, there may be distinct justifications for the same behavior.
First, they’re Greeting You Different cats
Welcome their owners in different ways when they come home or even when they awaken. While some cats will merely meow to meet you, others will roll on their backs the instant you open your eyes or enter the room. Some of you may feel your cat’s delicate touch as they rub against your leg.
When I come home from work or play, both of my cats usually wait for me by the door, mainly because they can’t wait to smell my shoes (I know, yuck!)
We can all agree that it’s a nice feeling to know that when you walk through the door, your cat is the first pet to greet you.
However, if you find that they get overly attached to you and begin to follow you everywhere, including to the bathroom, they may be experiencing separation anxiety.
Cats create attachment relationships with their owners that, according to studies, are similar to those formed by human children and other animals like dogs.
Independent cats are more likely to feel confident in their relationships with their owners; they may roll over to show their affection when they see you, but they won’t become your personal tail, as an insecure cat might.
Reason #2: They Want Pets
My cats don’t typically lay down in front of me to meet me, but anytime they want lots of cuddles and belly rubs, they will roll over.
I imagine that the majority of cat owners have witnessed this endearing habit during cuddle time, and because it’s so hard to resist, we usually simply reinforce the belly reveal.
I should point out that not all cats like to have their bellies rubbed, and just because your cat is rolling on their back to show it to you doesn’t mean they like to be stroked there.
Even while cats are expert hunters, they are also prey, and having someone touch the most exposed part of their bodies might make them react with flight or fight, according to cat behaviorist Pam Johnson-Bennett.
Because they feel overstimulated by the caressing, some cats may allow you to stroke their belly for a little period of time before biting you in the arm with their claws and teeth.
You must observe your cat’s overall body language if you want to be certain that it is rolling on its back when it sees you in order to be petted.
They will glance at you with wide-open eyes and point their ears backward if they are uneasy. This indicates that it’s time to back off and give them some room.
It’s also conceivable that your cat will roll over to allow you to pet other parts of them besides their belly, such as their back or under their chin.
All you need to do is keep an eye out or you’ll get caught!
Reason #3: They Desire Recognition
Your cat may also turn onto its back when it sees you in order to get your attention rather than to be pet.
Cats have actually developed a variety of strategies to influence our behavior. The iconic “solicitation purr” is one of them.
A high-pitched signal that sounds like a cry or cat meow is concealed within the low-pitched sound that they produce.
“It’s this secret signal that makes the purr of a hungry cat so appealing to humans,” claims Karen McComb.
Therefore, if your cat is rolling around on the ground while mimicking a solicitation purr, they are undoubtedly attempting to grab your attention by purring for rewards.
When your cat rolls on their back, it might be difficult to resist giving them a treat. The more you do, the more likely it is that they will continue to do so.
Fourth: They Want To Play
Similar to how your cat likes to roll on his back to acquire yummy goodies or a good ear scratch, this action can also be an invitation to play.
Dogs are perhaps the most lively pets, but in my experience, my cats are just as playful and will want to be played with at least once a day, whether it’s with toys or with me.
Some cats may point towards the toy to indicate that they want to play, while others will meow in another room and playfully flee as soon as you approach.
Cats that are accustomed to a different style of interaction, however, will roll over when they see you because they anticipate playing with your hand.
However, it’s not always a smart idea to play with your cat with your hand. If your cat is accustomed to wresting with your hand, the cat may start to consider you as an adversary, which increases the risk of injury to you, according to the cat behavior colleagues.
We can’t always avoid the playful flip of a cat, but you could use a stuffed sock or a toy in place of your arm to avoid the ultimate rabbit kick! Of course, we all have our moments of vulnerability.
Fifth: Your cat is in heat.
Your young kitten may have been rolling on its back in front of you if you just adopted them; this could be an indication that they’re in heat.
According to a research from Cambridge University, “females rolled mostly while they were in heat. Almost primarily adult males rolled for mature females.
Your cat is most likely not doing it for your attention, but for the interest of her potential suitors since rolling on their back is a mating activity.
During this time, female cats may vocalize a little more, lift their bottoms, and roll about you more affectionately.
You should discuss having your cat spayed with your veterinarian if you think that the reason your cat is rolling on their back is because they are in heat.
If you’re unsure of where to turn for assistance, use Pet Smart’s clinic locator to discover a low-cost spay/neuter facility nearby. You can frequently get your cat entirely spayed for free!
Your cat is marking its territory, which is reason no.
As you’ve probably already guessed, cats can be possessive and like to keep their territory to themselves.
It’s amazing how cats can assert their dominance without resorting to violence or conflict; instead, they can employ their deceptive charms.
The fragrance glands found on their feet, cheeks, face, and tail give them their subtle charms.
So, if your cat rolls on its back when it sees you and then turns to rub its entire body and cheeks on the ground nearby, it’s likely that they are delineating their territory.
Of course, your cat might also be waving at you and requesting attention while simultaneously dispersing pheromones on the area they’re rolling on to announce their authority to everyone in the house.
Similar to this, your cat may begin rubbing against your leg or headbutt into your hands and face to let you know that you are a member of their pack and that anyone else interested in joining should get in line!
Reason number seven: They’re flexing their muscles
Your cat may be rolling on its back to stretch out its long, fluffy body if they don’t want to be touched or seem to be asking for anything, and you just so happened to be there to admire their furry beauty.
Some cats may use this roll as a way to stretch and as a chance to get some back scratching from the textured floor.
This is particularly true if you observe your cat performing this flop in a particular area or perhaps just one particular point of the house.
Without exerting too much effort, this cat knows how to get a good stretch and a decent scratch.
Does it represent submission?
Even if the world tries to distinguish between cats and dogs, I prefer to see many parallels between the two animals. However, even I must acknowledge that there are some behavioral distinctions between the two species.
Dogs, for instance, frequently roll onto their backs to indicate submission.
Cats, on the other hand, tend to roll on their backs more for attention than as a sign of surrender to people.
But a research by Hilary Feldman from Cambridge University revealed that “adolescent guys roll near adult males as a form of subordinate or submissive behavior.
According to Feldman, this research “may have relevance for a comparable behavior between pet cats and their owners,” which Feldman refers to as the “phenomenon of passive submission”.
On the other side, according to Dr. Sharon Crowell-Davis, DVM, “And some cats just seem to adore rolling around on their back. It’s enjoyable to do that.
When your cat rolls onto its back, you’ll eventually learn to recognize its many moods and respond appropriately.
Naturally, there are a variety of explanations for why your cat flips over on its back, and many of them may all be as valid.
A cat that is rolling on its back in my opinion is content, and if they do it when they see us passing by, it means even more. If I had to sum it up in one word, it would be love.
Do you get to pet your cat’s belly when they flip over on their back when they see you?