Here's What Your Cat's Meows Really Mean

Did You Know

Here's What Your Cat's Meows Really Mean


Did you know that cats only meow at humans?

Kittens will meow to let their mothers know they want something, just like how a baby would, but when they get older, that way of communicating between cats stops.

Instead, cats communicate through body language, scent, touch, and facial expression.

Keep in mind, a cat's yowl is not the same as a meow. Cats will yowl at each other during breeding season, but that's about it.  

The reason why people think cats only meow at humans is because that's how they get their owners to listen to them.

While some cats are more vocal than others, they all have different types of meows to communicate with us.

The better we understand exactly what these meows mean, the better we'll be able to love and care for our precious fur balls.

If you've grown up with cats, you might already have a good idea what your cat is trying to tell you.

They have meows for all kinds of things, such as saying hello and asking for food.

That being said, it's hard to pinpoint exactly what each meow means.

Quick Meow

Short meows often indicate a friendly greeting. I love this cute hello!

Isn't it nice to be acknowledged by your cat without having to beg for it?

Low-Pitch Meow

Cats aren't as forgiving as dogs, so when you mess up, they'll call you out for it.

A low-pitch meow is your cat's way of complaining.

Mid-Pitch Meow

This meow usually means your cat is begging for something.

This could for food, water, or your attention.

High-Pitch Meow

For people who are not used to hearing a high-pitch meow, it can be unsettling.

This usually means your cat is extremely upset or in pain.

If these high-pitched meows continue, make sure to consult your vet.

Multiple Meows

Multiple meows are just as wonderful as a quick meow!

This often means your cat is super excited to see you and they want you to know it.

Give them as much love as you can, they'll appreciate you for it!

Drawn Out Meow

This is you cat's way of saying, "Do what I'm asking of you or I'll be upset."

You'll usually notice this a lot with outdoor cats who want to be let in or out.

Here are other reasons why your cat may be meowing

If you notice something abnormal about your cat's meow, make sure to consult your vet.

This could be a sign that your cat is sick. For example, elderly cats suffering from mental confusion may meow more often, which may be a sign of Alzheimer's Disease in cats.

All in all, a cat's meow means they want you to listen up, so pay close attention to them when they communicate with you.

You wouldn't ignore a family member if they're trying to tell you something important, right?

Share this article with other cat parents!

[H/T: ASPC / Psychology Today]

Moojan has been a writer at Shared for a year. When she's not on the lookout for viral content, she's looking at cute animal photos. Reach her at