Decoding feline behavior: Cats' squinting signifies a sense of safety, research reveals
It's a common belief that cats are such individualists that it's difficult to form a bond with them. Yet, this couldn't be further from the truth. Indeed, a lot depends on the pet's personality, but cats can be great human companions. All it takes is understanding their way of communication, which, in turn, significantly eases life with them.
Does your cat do this? It has a message for you
Cats communicate with people not just through sounds but also via body language. Much can be gleaned from their eye movements or tail flicks, especially when they start squinting at us.
Perhaps the first assumption that comes to mind is an impending attack. However, this assumption is erroneous. Squinting for cats is the equivalent of a human smile. Cats demonstrate their comfort and sense of safety by squinting in our presence.
Try this tactic when interacting with your cat. They will surely understand
A research study released by the University of Sussex and Portsmouth in the UK and cited by the Polish Press Agency claims that cats clearly understand behavior similar to that of humans. This study was documented in the Nature Scientific Report.
The studies were conducted in two phases. In the first experiment, cat owners and felines of various ages participated, where psychologists guided the owners on how to blink slowly. It was found that cats blinked more frequently when they saw their owners blink slowly than when there was no interaction.
In the second study, psychologists observed similar reactions. Cats more frequently approached a human's extended hand after he/she had slowly blinked at them. The researchers concluded that the slow eye squinting technique could be a positive form of communication between cats and their owners.