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Why Does my Cat Drool when Petted?

Josie F. Turner
By Josie F. Turner, Journalist specialized in Animal Welfare. Updated: February 22, 2018
Why Does my Cat Drool when Petted?

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Like us, cats can drool for different reasons and in response to different stimuli. Salivation is a normal and healthy phenomenon in their body, although it can be worrisome when it occurs excessively or suddenly.

Did you ever indulge your cat with pampering in their favorite body parts and observe how a small fountain of slime was born from their little mouth? Then you've probably wondered: why does my cat drool when petted? If you want to discover the answer, we invite you to continue reading this AnimalWised article.

You may also be interested in: Why Does My Cat Drool When I Give Them Medicine?
  1. Why do cats drool when you pet them?
  2. When is excessive drooling worrying?
  3. Is your cat stressed?
  4. Are you paying attention to your cat's oral health and hygiene?

Why do cats drool when you pet them?

You probably already know this feeling of excessive salivation when you see, smell or just think of a tasty food that "makes your mouth water", or you already perceived a small stain of slime on your pillow when you woke up from a nap. In these cases, the drool appears as a positive reflex against stimuli and situations that we like or relax. Much like what happens with us, a healthy cat can drool when they perceive a stimulus they like and when they experience pleasurable, fun or relaxing moments.

If your cat drools when you pet them, purrs and rubs their cheeks or head on your hands or feet, they are saying that they enjoy being with you and receiving your coddling. Your cat can also drool when smelling or experimenting with catnip or malt past, and sensing the smell of some of their favorite food. Although the percentage of cats that experience this phenomenon is not very high.

When is excessive drooling worrying?

As we said, drool can be a natural and positive aspect of your cat's behavior. But it is important to be attentive in order to know how to tell the difference between the "pleasure drools" from the excessive and sudden salivation, which can be a symptom of intoxication, poisoning or certain conditions.

When a cat drools for pleasure, this behavior is usually present from childhood and repeated regularly when presented with pleasant stimuli, appearing as a pleasant and spontaneous response of their body. In addition, the pleasant drool is almost always shown as small amount of liquid and transparent droplets, which do not smell bad and are not sticky.

If your cat starts to salivate excessively unusually or has never shown this behavior, it is essential to consult your trusted vet. The same applies in case of perceived alterations in the color, texture and aroma of the saliva.

And if you are also interested in knowing more about excessive salivation in domestic cats, we recommend you to read our article "Why does my cat drool a lot? All Possible reasons".

Why Does my Cat Drool when Petted? - When is excessive drooling worrying?

Is your cat stressed?

Another frequent cause of excessive drooling and salivation in cats is associated with the accumulation of tension and stress, which often favors the appearance or aggravates the symptoms of numerous diseases by weakening the animal's immune system.

A stressed cat can be more aggressive or hyperactive, being more vulnerable to the development of certain compulsive behaviors. Their appetite and digestive functions are also often affected by environments and situations of extreme stress. In these cases, you should know what to do if your cat is stressed.

Are you paying attention to your cat's oral health and hygiene?

Animals can salivate excessively due to bad breath and the accumulation of tartar in their teeth and gums as a result of poor oral hygiene. Oral hygiene is an essential care to preserve your pet's health and provide an effective and adequate preventive medicine. Although our cats can be very independent in their daily life, they need our help to ensure their oral health, so if you see your cat drool when you pet them and suspect that this may be the reason why, do not hesitate to go to the vet. Check out the most common oral diseases in cats to see if any of them fits your cat's symptoms.

When was the last time you brushed your cat's teeth? If you've never done it before or if you want to learn how to do it correctly, you can take advantage of our tips on how to clean my cat's teeth.

Why Does my Cat Drool when Petted? - Are you paying attention to your cat's oral health and hygiene?

This article is purely informative. AnimalWised does not have the authority to prescribe any veterinary treatment or create a diagnosis. We invite you to take your pet to the veterinarian if they are suffering from any condition or pain.

If you want to read similar articles to Why Does my Cat Drool when Petted?, we recommend you visit our Other health problems category.

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Why Does my Cat Drool when Petted?