Do cats hump?

Humping is a sexual behavior more common in dogs. Cats though are known to hump too. Humping is not unlike masturbation and cat owners would certainly be embarrassed if the cat suddenly thrust up against guests. Although humping is a manifestation of the cat’s sexual drive it is also possible that a humping cat has health and behavioural concerns that need to be resolved.

What is humping and why do cats manifest this behavior? A humping cat would rock its hips against objects like blankets, pillows or cloths. Cats would hump against animals. Cats also hump on the legs or on the arms of humans. The motion of the hips simulates the sex act. If the male cat is rolled over, the pink and barbed penis would be noticed to have emerged from its prepuce. Humping is not very common in kittens but just like puppies these young ones have innate sexual drives too. Humping is in effect a practice activity that will prepare the kittens (and the puppies) for future sexual encounters with the opposite sex. Cats would hump for pleasure. This sexual behavior is often noticed in cats that have been playing not only with other cats but with animals of different species. This behavior is associated with excitement or stress as well like when the cat is introduced to a new pet. Humping signals the cat’s willingness to mate and to be mated. In male cats, the rocking of the hips against objects or other animals is a form of flirting. Remember, tom cats are always ready to mate and this behavior is the cat’s way of initiating a sexual encounter. Female cats would only be receptive of the sexual advances of toms if it is in heat. One of the signs that the female cat is ready to be mated is humping. This is commonly seen in female cats that are not given the chance to be with a tom.

Humping is basically a sexual behaviour. Owners of neutered cats would be surprised to see the pet humping as it is commonly believed that neutering removes the cat’s sexual drive. Neutered cats may not look for a sexual partner as the hormones were taken care of but signals coming from the brain would still make the cat hump. With neutering, the sex drive of the cat is greatly decreased but not totally removed. These furry friends though can have other reasons for humping. The humping of the cat may not be a sign of its sexual drive but a call for the cat parent’s attention. Cats are always viewed as independent and aloof pets because these are solitary animals. The standoffish personality does not mean that cats would not seek the attention of the owners or that the cat would not need the affection of the owner. Seeking attention typically occurs when another pet is brought in or in other situations where the cat believes there is competition like a new baby in the family. What would a cat do to get the owner’s attention? The cat would manifest some unusual behaviors and one of these is humping. Humping can be the cat’s reaction to a traumatic experience like when the pet had serious injuries or had undergone a surgical procedure.

The cat’s humping is not really a serious concern. Some pet parents though can get embarrassed or irritated by the pet’s inclination to hump. Creating a distraction every time the cat starts to hump would prevent the development of this behavior. It would not hurt to give the pet more attention. Pick and cuddle the cat whenever it is seen humping. A vet’s attention may be necessary if the cat is humping excessively. Some cat owners would ask the vet to prescribe antidepressants to stop the irritating humping habit of the pet.