Understanding Common Cat Behaviors: Decoding Signals and Joint Health

Decoding common cat behaviours
From joint stiffness and frustration to feeling the love, what is your cat trying to tell you?
With their sophisticated body language and reputation for being more independent than dogs, cats may seem a bit harder for humans to read. But could it be that we’re just missing the cues?
‘Cats have different moods and emotions just like us, but there is usually a reason for a cat’s emotional state and a trigger for any change in behaviour. Behaviour can tell us a lot about how our cats are feeling’, says leading feline behaviourist Lucy Hoile.
‘A cat experiencing joint stiffness will show a reluctance to run and jump, they may also start hiding away more and being less social. Reduced grooming and uncharacteristic toilet accidents are other warning signs, as is them becoming irritable or less willing to be handled or stroked.’

TV vet Dr Scott Miller explains why cats are so good at concealing the signs: ‘Being solitary animals, cats don’t have the same social relationships that dogs do, so they hide any weakness which could expose them to predators in the wild. The trouble is, this makes changes to joint health harder to spot and some cats might spend over half their life experiencing undetected joint stiffness, as a result.’
‘From a veterinary perspective, about 60% of cats over the age of six have some level of joint change, including joint stiffness, and that’s where I feel supplements are so important to help keep them healthy and happy.’
Other common cat behaviours and what they mean by Feline behaviourist, Lucy Hoile.

Chattering teeth – Usually a sign of frustration. Commonly when they are looking at a prey animal out of reach, such as spotting a bird through the window.
Rubbing against you – Positive, affectionate behaviour. Can also be attention-seeking.
Feline ‘kneading’ – A comforting behaviour stemming from kittenhood, when they would knead the mother’s tummy to stimulate milk flow.
Staring at you – Look for a slow blink to indicate your cat is relaxed and happy. Maintaining eye contact can also be a sign of threat.
Won’t look at you – Eye contact can feel threatening, so looking away is avoiding conflict.
Ear twitching – Ears up and facing forward usually shows they are relaxed or find something interesting. Turned down indicates frustration. Pinned right down indicates fear or anxiety.

As well as home environmental changes, such as providing well-padded, easily accessible sleeping spaces, Dr Scott recommends high-quality joint care supplements YuMOVE Joint Care for Cats and YuMOVE Joint Care PLUS for Cats, especially for more senior cats.
‘Pets in my practice have seen a difference after just a short time on YuMOVE, and clients are supremely happy with the results,’ he says. ‘Adding such a high-quality supplement to your cat’s daily feeding regime can help support their mobility.’
YuMOVE Joint Care PLUS for Cats is a NEW high-strength joint supplement for older and stiffer cats that is designed to aid stiff joints, help mobility, and support joint structure.
Meanwhile, YuMOVE Joint Care for Cats is a great way to help all cats stay happy and active.
Find out more at YuMOVE.co.uk.
Watch TV Vet, Dr Scott Miller and feline behaviourist, Lucy Hoile discuss cat behaviour and joint health https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OdA3sfUahi4&feature=youtu.be

About Lintbells | Home of YuMOVE
Lintbells | Home of YuMOVE is a leading manufacturer of high-quality pet supplements that support joint health, digestion, skin and coat health, dental hygiene, wellbeing and more.
Based in Hertfordshire, UK, Lintbells strives to deliver the most life-changing differences to cats, dogs and their owners with innovative, science-backed supplements.
Established in 2006, the business has seen rapid growth as part of its international expansion and now exports to more than 20 countries. www.yumove.co.uk
Notes to editors:
YuMOVE Joint Care is the UK’s no.1 joint supplement brand. *
YuMOVE Joint Care PLUS for Cats was launched in the UK in January 2024.
YuMOVE Joint Care for Cats and YuMOVE Joint Care PLUS for Cats contain YuMOVE’s unique ActivEase® Green Lipped Mussel which is sustainably sourced from the crystal-clear waters of New Zealand and provides a unique combination of Omega-3 fatty acids to help soothe stiff joints.
ActivEase® Green Lipped Mussel contains up to 8x the amount of Omega-3, and is up to 30x more powerful, than other ordinary Green Lipped Mussel powder. **
*Kynetec VetTrak December 2023. Sales of YuMOVE branded products through veterinary wholesalers.
** Data on file.
About Dr Scott Miller
Australian born vet and author, Dr Scott is the resident vet on ITV flagship show, This Morning, giving advice to viewers in the studio and presenting live and recorded animal items from all around the UK and internationally. He is also the owner and principal veterinarian at three veterinary practices in South-West London.
With a 20-year broadcasting career, Scott is a regular face on many UK channels including BBC, ITV, Channel 4, Channel 5 and Sky. His own programme for More4, Vet on the Hill, filmed at his Richmond practice, has been broadcast around the world in almost 30 countries and dubbed in seven different languages. He is also a keen writer, contributing regularly to broadsheets and magazines.
Recently Scott has been working closely with charities to support animals in Ukraine and has been over to the country twice amid the ongoing war.
Scott has a busy family life with his wife Zoe, four children, two cats – the legendary veteran Ricketts & younger feline Luna and two dogs – Skully & Ludo.
About Lucy Hoile
Passionate cat behaviourist, Lucy Hoile, began her career as a project to help cats and their owners back in 2010. She quickly realised that a lot of people were looking for a better understanding of their cat and wanted to learn how they can be everything their cat needs them to be.
With a MSc in Companion Animal Behaviour Counselling from the University of Southampton, and a certification by the Association for the Study of Animal Behaviour (ASAB) as a Clinical Animal Behaviourist (CCAB), Lucy has gone on to achieve a number of professional accreditations and appeared as an expert panellist on a variety of TV and radio shows.
The experience of seeing problem behaviours disappear and watching the relationship between cats and their owners flourish is something Lucy is extremely passionate about. With a wealth of experience working with cats with behaviour problems over the past decade, her aim is to help you understand why your cat’s behaviour is challenging.
Lucy has a black and white cat called Fig.
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