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What Your Cat is Telling You with Their Tail? – Cat Tail Language Guide

Just like dogs, cats’ tail suggests the difference in their moods. Tail positioning, accompanied by other changes in cat tail body language, is enough for you to communicate with your cat and understand its requirements. The Cat tail meanings are beneficial in determining their mood.

All About Cat Tail Meanings

Have you ever wondered why cats twitch their tails in different ways? Cats use their tails to communicate a wide range of emotions, from pleasure and affinity to fear or anger. By understanding the cat tail meanings, pet owners can better understand their cats’ emotional and mental state. In this guide, we will explore the different meanings behind each tail movement your cat might make.

#1 Upright and High

Cat tail language means it is their way of showing confidence and dominance in that environment. This dominance is not a threat to others. It means that they have control over their surroundings, so there are no dangers. It also means happiness and security. If your cat approaches you with its tail held high, you should consider spending time with your pet, providing treats and cuddles. A slight shake at the tip of the seat would mean extreme delight. If a stray cat is holding its tail upright, it signifies a willingness.

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#2 Hanging

When a cat lets its tail hang straight down, it could be followed by aggressive or agitated behaviour. This positioning sets the cat tail moods very seriously or under great stress. It is best not to try and approach a cat with a hanging or “low” tail. It is also essential to know that some breeds, like Persian cats, keep their seats low and hanging without any stress or aggression.

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#3 Tucked In

Cats tend to tuck their tail under them when nervous or scared. In this situation, they feel very submissive and hesitant. The best way to calm them down is to leave them alone for some time. It might give your cat some chance to feel in control of situations around her and regain her confidence.

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#4 Question Mark Tail

A question mark tail denotes a curious cat. If your cat is approaching you with its tail erect with the tip bent at an angle, you should understand that they want to spend time with you, play with you and get to know you. They will curl their tail in this way when they feel excited and interested. It is the best time to get cuddles from your cats if they mostly ignore you.

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#5 Swishing Motion

The cat is ready to attack or pounce on something if the tail shows a quick left-to-right motion. It is a state of complete focus. You can see the body language for cats, when the cat tries to hunt a bird or insect. They notice, wait and then pounce on the object/animal. Sometimes, you can catch this behaviour when trying to serve them food. It is the characteristic of your cat’s predatory instincts.

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#6 Tail Wrapped Around the Body

It is a clear sign that your cat is trying to protect itself from whatever danger may occur. It means that cats are fearful, timid and anxious. It could also mean that they are defensive and uncomfortable with their surroundings. When they wrap themselves in this position, it shows their unwillingness to interact. However, when they keep their head close to their chest, it is indicative of warmth and organ preservation.

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#7 Whipping Motion

If you are thinking about how do cats move their tails? Then, the tail’s back and fourth thumping motion could mean a fair warning not to approach them. It is a ferocious movement and not a swift or soft motion. It signals that the cat is unhappy, angry or scared. The action gets faster when they get more agitated. You can also differentiate this motion from others by checking if they are crouching and have their ears flattened.

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#8 Puffed Up

You must have watched several cat videos in which sudden noises or activities make them jump. One common thing in most of those videos is their puffed-up tail. It is a common cat tail signs of nervousness and fright. The cat looks bigger to fend off the threat and not get attacked. Do not try to calm them down by approaching them or advancing towards them when they are scared. Give them time to come up to you on their own.


How to know if my cat is unwilling to interact?

If your cat is hanging low or is straight down with a slight curve, do not interact with them and leave them alone. As a general rule, if the tail is below the level of its back, your cat is not inviting you to approach them.

What does it mean when my cat wraps its tail around me?

It means that your cat is showing affection towards you. It is a cat signs language of bonding and companionship when a cat wraps its tail around a person or another cat.

What does a 45° angled cat tail mean?

Whenever cats are unsure about a situation or the surroundings, they keep their tails at an angle. They are not friendly or aggressive at this stage.

What is the feline equivalent of canine wagging?

A slight twitch at the end of the tail could be considered the cat wagging tail meaning. When cats deeply engage with something or hunting, they twitch the tip or the back of their seat. It could signify annoyance and irritation as well.

Why does the tail of my cat shake?

It is called the quivering motion of the tail. It happens when the cat is highly thrilled. Cats erect their seats, and the whole length seems to vibrate. It could happen when you offer them treats or meet them after a long time.


So this is all about cat tail meanings, a puffed-up, tucked-in, or cat tail straight up mean very different things. Learning these tell-tale signs of your cat’s tail can help you in the long run. These signals can help you understand and consider a better approach to communicating with them and decide whether to advance with love or caution.