What’s with Cats and All That Stretching?
Cats are able to contort their bodies into all kinds of positions when they stretch. Here’s what experts say about cats and their nimble stretching habits.
Like little yogis, cats always make time to stretch. You might have noticed that your kitty likes to stretch her limbs when she wakes up from a nap, after eating or playing, or even when she is asking for attention or food. So what’s with all that stretching anyway? Experts have their theories, and a few of them are listed below.
A Good Stretch After a Good Sleep
Like you, cats like to stretch after waking up from a nap because, well, it feels great! After lying in the same position for so long, it’s nice to let the limbs extend while lengthening and stretching out the muscles.
Related: Why Do Cats Like Boxes?
Beyond that, stretching could help boost blood flow throughout the body, which is important since cats love to spend up to 16 hours of their day asleep. After all of that inactivity, felines will enjoy a few good stretches to get the blood flowing, activate the muscles, and increase blood pressure, as a kitty’s blood pressure naturally drops whenever she is napping too. All of that equates to feeling alert and ready to eat, play, and do other fun cat things.
Keeping Things Limber and Prepared for Action
If you go long periods of time without stretching and moving your body, you’ll end up feeling stiff and your range of motion could become limited. The same is true for cats. By moving their joints and stretching their muscles, kitties are keeping their bodies flexible so they can jump high, tackle prey, and run with speed and agility. Put simply, by keeping the muscle fibers elongated with the help of various stretches, kitties can ensure that they are always ready to spring into action whenever necessary.
Related: Why Do Cats Meow at Night?
A Little Bit of Detox
After being inactive for a while, toxins and waste, such as lactic acid and carbon dioxide, may build up within your cat’s body. So when your frisky feline stretches upon waking, she is not only working on getting her muscles moving, but she is also helping her body flush those toxins out. You might consider all of that stretching a natural form of detoxification, as the movements could help boost not only blood circulation, but also the lymph circulation that helps clean the body from the inside.
Showing You Some Love
Has your cat ever stretched out on her back in front of you, and perhaps even extended a paw towards you? That’s a sign that she is totally comfortable around you and she is even willing to expose her delicate belly to you because she trusts you that much. So in addition to stretching out because it feels fabulous, this could also be your kitty’s way of letting you know that she really digs you.
As you can see, cats have some pretty good reasons for doing all of the stretching that they do throughout the day. After sitting for an extended period of time or taking a long nap, your furry friend knows exactly how to get the body moving again and how to loosen up her muscles and joints so she can be the playful and active kitty that she was meant to be