Bunting, also known as head butts, is something all cat people love to experience. These terms come from other
activities: bunting = baseball, or a type of cloth material. Butts = a term used by wrestlers and maybe, goats. But, cat lovers have hijacked the term to mean when a kitty comes up to you and presents the top of her head and shoves it against your chin or hand.
It is sure to elicit an “Awww!” We like to think the cat is trying to tell us in their cat language that they love us. Okay, maybe. It’s nice to feel our pet has affection for us, after all the petting we do to them.
But what is really going on here? Being an amateur student of cat behavior, I felt compelled to find out.
Over on Vet Street they say felines are leaving pheromones on things they find safe in their environment. SO, kitty IS telling you, in a way she likes you. You are trusted. Safe.
Cats do this in varying amounts and intensities. It all depends on the cat.
This phenomenon has generated a Facebook page all about cat head butts. Really cute pictures there.
I love head butts because it feels like a loving communication from the cat that has nothing to do with “Feed me!” or “Clean my litter box!” As cat staff, we’ll take whatever recognition we can get. We certainly don’t earn higher pay for our efforts.
My cat, Sophie, doesn’t give head butts so much as she “presents” the top of her head to me to plant a kiss on it. Then she saunters away. Geesh. She must think good help is hard to find these days.
Please leave a comment about your cat giving you head butts. It is one of the cutest things they do! (And enough to make you forgive them for any misbehavior.)
- Cats are Equal Opportunity Affection Givers [Infographic] (loupdargent.info)