Cat Noises and What They Mean

However, sometimes a cat’s meow may signal stress and frustration, boredom, or even illness, especially in the case of a meow that is lower pitched and more exaggerated compared to a meow that is short and high-pitched, which typically signifies a greeting or a desire. If your cat’s making more meows than usual or if their meows begin to sound unusual, consult your vet.


The purr can be described as a soft and continuous tone generated by breathing. Although most people think of purrs as a signal of satisfaction and enjoyment, purrs could also indicate that your cat is scared or, sick, or suffering.

As with all feline communications, purring is to be assessed within the context of how the animal’s movements are interpreted. In the event that the cat’s ears appear to be pointing back, or their pupils are constricted, or they’re sitting tensely up, or if they’re acting differently than usual, the purr could indicate an animal that is frightened or resentful.


A chirp is an unrepeatable high-pitched sound that is like a bird (hence the name). A series of chirps are known as”chirrups. A chirp may be initially spoken to the mom cat to attempt to contact her kittens. However, adult cats might make chirps to attract attention or alert other cats or individuals of their position.

One of the main reasons cats chirp is when they spot prey that they are unable to access, like when watching the birds or squirrels out the window. In this instance, it can be a sign of enthusiasm, sometimes mixed with a bit of anger.


A trill is a sound that’s produced by a soft voice. It sounds similar to a purr but with a higher pitch. Cats can use trills to thank their human relatives for something, including an item of food or an animal. This is among the most popular amicable sounds that cats make.

Chattering and Twittering

Twittering, also known as chattering, is a low smacking sound created by a pulsating jaw clenching. It’s usually not a voice (produced by a non-voice cord). Alongside chattering, chirping may happen when a cat sees prey that is out of reach.

Growling and Hissing

The word “growl” is a low, loud sound used to warn or frighten away a danger. It may be directed at the human or any other feline or other animals. It is a sign that the cat is afraid or scared or is poised to escalate into aggression. The sound usually increases when the cat’s fear increases.

The sound of a hiss can be described as a loud, drawn-out sound made by the rapid exhalation of air out of the mouth. A cat that hisses will open their mouth and their teeth open. It’s typically an involuntary response that happens when a cat is frightened by perceived danger or threat. Similar to growling, hissing can be often used to warn. They are usually associated with body language that evokes fear, such as a slouched back fla,ttened ears, flapping tail, and puffy-up hair. This is the classic Halloween cat pose.

If a cat yells or hisses, they’re declaring that they don’t permit the action to occur, for instance, when a pet owner is seeking to pet the cat. They’re basically telling you, “hey, back off. I do not want to hear the way you’re acting.” If the cat snarls or hisses at you, stay at a safe distance from it. If you notice your cat growl towards something different, such as an animal, a piece of furniture, or a person, eliminate the perceived threat.

Family members shouldn’t attempt to pet or hold an angry or hissing cat since the cat may get so scared that they could resort to a violent response.


A Spit is a quick, explosive burst sound, usually accompanied by a swift, violent action. The spit is an even more powerful version of a hiss. Like hissing, it’s an uncontrollable reaction to a perceived threat or a perceived enemy.

Yowling and Howling

It is often considered to be a louder and longer meow; a howl is an extended sound that cats make. A cry can be like a yowl. However, it is usually shorter in length.

The sound of howling and yowling is a sign that your cat is in trouble. This could be a sign of physical distress due to illness or pain or emotional distress due to anxiety, frustration, boredom, or even the feeling of being in a cage. Older cats might yowl when they are suffering from cognitive dysfunction syndrome or dementia. If your cat is loud during times when family members are absent, They could be suffering from separation anxiety.

Cats can also make a noise or yowl to signal a warning to ensure that other cats don’t interfere with their space. Cats that are not neutered may make these noises as a part of mating behaviors.


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