Listening to a cat purr is a magical and relaxing experience. And for good reason. Usually… But have you ever wondered why cat’s purr? Or why the sound is so soothing?
It’s commonly thought that a cat will purr when they’re happy and content. And this is true. Purring is most often associated with a pleasant experience. But as with almost all things ‘cat’, there is more to understand.
A cat will also purr if they are stressed, ill, or injured. And that complicates things, doesn’t it?
This is why paying attention to a cat’s body language is so important. Everything about a cat’s ears, whiskers, tail, eyes, and overall body positioning provide context clues.
You may have noticed your cat purring at a vet visit while cowering in their carrier… Or hiding under your bed when they’re not feeling well – purring. But why?
A cat’s purr is more than meets the ear…
What’s fascinating about the purr is it’s a vibration of a cat’s vocal cords caused by neurological stimulation from brain activity. And it produces a vibrational frequency between 25-140 hertz. This happens to be the frequency range that helps heal bones, muscles, and wounds. It’s also proven to release endorphins – which reduces stress and help lower blood pressure.
And now it makes more sense as to why a cat will purr when stressed, ill, or injured. Interestingly enough, they will also purr when we are stressed, ill, or injured.
Time and again cats have used this magical vibration to help heal us too. Science shows that a cat’s purr calms our nervous system. This healing frequency lowers our blood pressure and improves our overall cardiovascular health.
Not only that, cats have been known to sense illness in their humans. Our own cat-sitter experienced this with her cat. She noticed he started being very intentionally about laying over her throat when she went to bed – purring loudly. It was very out of character for him. And she paid attention. She had been feeling a little more tired than usual – and her cat’s extra attention got her to make a doctor’s appointment. That reveal a cancerous growth. In her throat.
Early detection meant early removal – and she is now cancer free. And she completely believes he sensed the cancer and was trying to heal it.
And we agree. The real magic is that our cats are healing machines. They are intuitive beyond our ability to understand – and they are made with an incredible ability to heal themselves – and us.
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