Being a cat owner, you know that it has quite a few unusual habits that you do not quite understand. One of those habits is constantly sniffing your eyes at the most random times. There are multiple reasons for this, but let’s just say that your cat is trying to communicate something with you. So, to take a closer look, why does your cat sniff your eye?
In this article, we will look through the different reasons your cat may sniff your eye. You will also read about what you can do to limit its habit if you do not like it.
Why does my cat sniff my eye?
Cats’ attempts to smell something should not really be a surprise; they have a powerful sense of smell. You probably find it poking its nose around random items in the house trying to smell them.
Not only that, but they are also very possessive in nature. It does not matter whether it is a person or an object, they will fight another cat if they are attached to it.
So what does this have to do with sniffing your eye, you might say?
Well, when you combine their strong sense of smell with their possessive nature and instincts, you get the formula that your cat uses to figure out who its owner is.
Meaning, it can use these capabilities to identify you, its owner, from a crowd of people, which is amazing.
It also shows your bond with it, a good bond equals more sniffing of eyes.
But that is not all, there are a couple of other reasons that your cat may take a liking to your eyes. Let’s take a look at them.
Reasons your cat sniffs your eye
While the most basic reason cats want to get a sniff of their owners eye is for recognition and affection reasons, that is not all.
There are other reasons that can indicate a serious problem, not with your cat, but most likely with you. If, after reading, you suspect a problem with yourself, do not hesitate to get medical help.
It might point out an infection in your eye
Cats have strong instincts that aid them to see if someone is sick, especially their owners. This is also the case with emotions, cats are great at figuring out their owners moods and treating them accordingly.
One of the reasons it may sniff your eye more often than normal is because it suspects an infection.
This could be something it sees in your eye and trying to get to know what it is by sniffing, or maybe it notices some form of redness or tears, which is why it is trying to inform you about it through its actions.
Either way, if you suspect that your cat is over-sniffing your eye, take a closer look at it and consult a professional ophthalmologist if needed.
It is showing you that it loves you
We already know that felines are not too open about their feelings. Compared to canines, they are terrible at communication!
They do show subtle signs of affection though, you just have to look closely at its actions.
Actions such as licking your ear, sleeping between your legs, and standing on your toes, are your cat’s subtle display of affection.
Sniffing your eyes is no different. If they love you, they may come and sit close to you, and even encourage you to pet them if they are feeling really good, and try to get a sniff of your eye.
This is because every person has a different scent, and a cat can smell the watery fluid from your eye which makes it recognize you as its owner.
Sniffing your eye for affection also improves your bond with your cat, as it feels closer to you because it is able to identify you even from a large group of people.
Licking off your tears
Who needs tissues when you have cats? It is true, cats lick your tears!
Remember when we talked about how cats are able to understand our emotions and soothe us based on what we are feeling?
Well, this is one of them. If you are sad and a tear falls from your eye, your cat will come close to you and even lick your tear from your eye.
Now, why does it sniff your eye if it wants to lick the tear?
The answer is, the saltiness of the year attracts your cat. You may observe your cat coming to you more often when you are crying, than when you are in glee.
Salty tears are also the reason why your cat will sniff your eye after you are done crying.
While incredibly comforting to have your feline friend around you in time of need, this habit can get a bit irritable, because the closeness of the cat can harm your eye.
If your cat has any contagious disease, you should probably try to keep it away from you as eyes are susceptible to infections very easily.
Sniffing your scent
Your cat recognizes you by your scent. Every human is different, so naturally the scent of each person differs, which makes it easy for cats to recognize you.
Not surprisingly, their strong sense of smell attracts them to your eye, to sniff the eye and the area around it to store in its core memory.
Cats sniff everytime they see someone new to see if they can trust them. This is more common with cats whose owners do not stay at home too often.
Because every time they see their owner and get familiar with them, they leave and when they come back, they have to sniff their eyes again to see if they are the same person they trusted before.
It helps them relax
Naturally, a familiar scent makes us all comfortable, because it lets us know that we are in a safe and comfortable place.
With cats, it is no different. If you happen to have a good bond with your cat, then as soon as they sniff you around, they will put their guard down and relax themselves.
This is a good thing, you want your cat to always be relaxed around you, because an un-relaxed cat is not the most pleasant to be around.
So the next time it tries to sniff your eye so it can get comfortable around you, let it do so!
How to stop your cat from sniffing your eye?
As endearing this habit is, a cat sniffing your eyes can get annoying at one time, especially if you are crying and your cat is trying to get a whiff of your eye.
There are a number of things you can do to stop your cat from sniffing your eye.
The first thing is to wear glasses. To be honest, glasses are not the best way to stop your cat sniffing, but it is an added obstacle.
However, if you train the cat to not sniff your eyes, and wear glasses to discourage it, it may work well.
You can train it by gently pushing it away whenever it comes near your eye, or you can take out a disapproving sound so your cat understands that you do not appreciate this action.
You can also take it a step further and teach your cat another habit such as scratching scratch poles, or playing with a new toy.
In short, there are many ways you can get your cat to not sniff your eye, but in our experience, as long as it stays a safe distance away from you eye, you should allow it to sniff your eye once in a while.
Yes, it can be unpleasant, but if your cat enjoys it, then it is good for both your relationship and bond.
In conclusion, why does your cat sniff your eye?
There are multiple reasons for it, some more serious than others for you, not your cat.
Cats sniff your eyes because of their affection for you, they want to get familiar with you to allow you to pet them, or because they want to relax.Since cats are great at deciphering our moods and also get attracted to the salt in your tears, they come to lick your tears and sniff your eyes to make you feel better.
Not only does this help you calm down, but also helps your cat relax.
There are a couple of things you can do to stop your cat from sniffing your eyes, but for the sake of your relationship, if your cat sniffs within a limit, you should let it,
If you push it away, chances are it may lose its trust with you because it can not sniff you anymore.
Lastly, cats sniff your eyes too often sometimes because they suspect an infection. If you think your cat is right, check your eyes for any infections and get yourself medically checked in case you actually have an infection.
Stay happy and safe!
Cats show strange behaviour such as sleeping between legs, moving its kittens, scratching mirrors, tail hitting, bedroom door waiting, eye sniffing, chin biting, black boogers, foot standing, back jumping, sighing, peeing in the bathtub and toe licking may actually have solid reasons behind. Its important we educate ourselves about possible reasons and then act timely for any fix.