Valentine’s Day is here: a celebration of love in all its shapes and forms. And for us pet parents, some of that love comes in the shape of a ball of fur.
Animals show us they care in a hundred adorable, funny (and weird) ways. But as it’s Valentine’s Day we are honouring today, here are 14 ways your pet is saying those three magic words.
1. They greet you at the door
That moment when you return home from work to find your pets waiting behind the door has to be one of the purest expressions of love. Partners, please take note!
2. They follow you around
Whether you’re unloading the dishwasher, putting away the shopping or in the shower, there they are, watching you. Pets are happy to hang out with you during the most boring, mundane moments. Surely that means they enjoy your company?
3. They tap you with their paw
Okay, sometimes your furry friend wants a cheeky bite of your burger. But ‘pawing’ is also a cute way of demanding your attention. And a sign that they want to interact with you.
4. They sit by your side
There’s nothing sweeter than when your pet curls up next to you. Sometimes they sit on your lap, for hours. This leaves you feeling all fuzzy and warm inside no matter how badly you need the loo.
5. They look into your eyes
Both cats and dogs will avoid making eye contact unless it’s with someone they trust. In fact, most animals view prolonged eye contact as a threat. But when your pet gives you a soft, relaxed gaze, it’s a sign that they feel good around you.
6. They bring you presents
Cats love giving gifts! Mice, birds, leaves… Dogs will either bring you toys or dutifully destroy your things when it’s ‘clearly’ time to replace them. Each approach is as thoughtful as the other.
7. They ‘knead’ you
When cats do this, they’re associating you with the comfort of nursing. In other words, they’re feeling as happy and loved as when they were a kitten.
8. They look after you when you’re low
Who needs chicken soup when you have dog or kitty cuddles? Pets have an ability to sense when you’re having a rough day, and will go out of their way to rectify this. Methods include being extra silly or glueing themselves to you for emotional support.
9. They show you their belly
Your pet’s stomach is their most vulnerable body part. If they roll over and expose it to you, consider yourself a very special human.
10. They blink at you
Also known as ‘kitty kisses’. A slow blink is cat code for ‘I like you’. Do it and they may blink back at you. It takes practice.
11. They don’t judge you
Your pet doesn’t care about your age, sex, social skills or sense of style. They love you just the way you are.
12. They sleep close to you
Your pet wanting to sleep next to you is a sign of closeness. This may be obvious when they choose to sleep on your head. But sleep interruptions aside, having a purring cat or content dog sleeping by your side is undeniably comforting.
13. They head-butt you
When a cat rubs their head against you, they’re marking you with their scent and claiming you as ‘theirs’. A little weird, yes, but 100% adorable.
14. They forgive you
Your pet hasn’t the slightest idea why you keep taking them to those dreaded humans you call ‘the groomer’ and ‘the vet’. And yet they still like you. Now, that is an act of love.
Animals have unique ways of sneaking into our hearts. Take a close look at their behaviour and you’ll realise that true love doesn’t need words.