•Here you will find photo, video, and text descriptions of various cat social behaviors. Affiliative behaviors are those used during positive interactions with preferred associates- including other cats and humans! Agonistic behaviors include aggressive or submissive behaviors displayed during conflicts or conflict resolution.
Cat Social Behaviors
Purr vocalization: Used when cat is content and may inform another individual of their positive mood. (May also be used when the cat is frightened or sick- but this would not be an affiliative use of the behavior.)
Trill vocalization: Used when cat is in a positive mood or greets another individual. A sharp, fast purr-meow [purrrrrr-eeeow].
Posturing: Cat’s back is arched, fur is pilo-erected (stands on ends), and tail is fast/twitchy. Used by cat when it is in close proximity to another individual with which it is engaged in an aggressive situation. (Video see 2 min in).
Hiss: A fast hiss sound. Used by cat in threatening situations as a warning to another individual to keep their distance.
Growl vocalization: Deep, guttural noise used in threatening and potentially aggressive situations.
Caterwaul vocalization: A shrill, high pitched meow held for short period of time. Typically used when two cats are in close proximity engaged in an aggressive situation.