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Felines are often mysterious creatures, whose behaviours need to be understood well to detect potential problems, stress situations, and positive and negative feelings. You may have noticed that your cat often moves its ears. But why?

If your cat moves its ears, the reasons could be various and diverse. Let’s discover all the causes and motivations behind this action in this article!

The Ears of a Cat

Unlike us humans, cats can voluntarily move their ears, thanks to the presence of as many as 32 muscles in each, which allow them to control them and rotate up to 180 degrees.

But why is it so important to observe carefully if and how your cat moves its ears? Through their movement, felines are able to communicate what they are feeling at that exact moment. Depending on the type of movement, you can understand your cat’s emotions and know if it’s necessary to intervene or not. They are not always easy animals to understand, which is why observing and understanding some of their gestures will be essential to help ensure your furry friend’s well-being and health.

Below is a small guide on the movements of your cat’s ears and how to best interpret each action to understand its emotions and feelings.


Upright Cat Ears

One of the most common positions in which a cat usually moves its ears is to keep them upright. If they are well raised and forward-facing, it means that your cat is well, calm, and relaxed, in an optimal condition of well-being.

However, upright ears are not always an indicator of positive feelings. If you notice that your cat moves its ears with the tips outward, it indicates that your pet is very annoyed or even getting angry. In these cases, it will be up to you to identify the source of this annoyance and intervene to improve the situation.

If instead your cat moves its ears sideways, it means it is scared.

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Lowered Cat Ears

There may be situations where your cat moves its ears to keep them lowered. In these cases, there are two opposing reasons to consider. That’s why it’s very important to observe your kitty’s ear movements together with the gestures of the rest of its body, particularly its eyes, tail, and back.

If your cat has its ears lowered and its pupils are dilated, it means the cat is very nervous and angry. In these cases, besides understanding the reason for this behaviour, it’s very important to avoid touching it suddenly and harshly.

On the contrary, if your cat moves its ears keeping them lowered, but its eyes are slightly closed, it means it’s in a state of total relaxation and just waiting for some affection from its owner.

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The Cat Moves Its Ears: Not Just Emotions!

We’ve seen how a cat moves its ears to express its emotions and mood. However, ear movement is not just an indicator of what your furry friend is feeling.

Cats’ hearing is exceptionally developed. Felines can indeed detect even very sharp sounds, which the human ear cannot perceive. Voluntarily moving the ears is thus not only a way to express their emotions but also to identify and listen to sounds. In these cases, the cat’s ears will tend to turn towards the direction from which the noise comes, to distinguish it and hear it better.

Does your cat move its ears? Keep these small lessons in mind to get to know your furry friend even better!

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