I am an Affilate!

I hope you enjoy any product or service that I recommend. :) Just so you understand, I may take a share of any sales or other compensation from the links on this page. As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases. Thanks if you use my links, I really appreciate your support.

Why Does My Cat Smell My Feet?

If your cat has a habit of smelling your feet you may be wondering why this keeps happening and if its normal behavior… 

Why Does My Cat Smell My Feet?

Cats are naturally curious animals who love smelling feet to see where their humans have gone throughout the day. Studying your travels is important to your cat because they live vicariously through your adventures. 

So, know you know. But, what is so interesting about my feet? Why does my cat rub her face on them? And why would it lick them? Keep reading for these answers, and much more. 

What is so interesting about my feet to my cat?

A cat lying down.

A cat lying down.

Many domestic cats are not allowed outside, so the unfamiliar smells tracked into your home interest your cat. The world is full of endless smells that your cat is not allowed to experience.

Your feet smell like a mixture of sweat, outdoors, and more. In some cases, the type of smell can disappoint your cat, especially if it involves another cat. Your cat may open their mouth wide or hiss after smelling another pet on your feet.

Why Does My Cat Rub Her Face on My Feet?

Cats rub their faces against things to mark their scent on them. The sweat glands on the sides of the cat’s face release an odor that helps mark your cat’s territory. When they rub their face against your feet, they are actively marking you as their territory.

It is common for cats to rub their faces against their feet when seeking attention from their human companions. They may rub against your leg and rub their chin lovingly to get your attention. If you give them attention, they get affection and mark their scent on you as well!

What Causes a Cat to Lick My Feet?

Cats like to lick feet so they can take in human scent. Humans sweat a lot through their feet which is why cats love licking feet! Licking feet allow them to take in their human companion’s scent while also transferring theirs.

The saltiness of body sweat may also lead your cat to lick your feet. Although body sweat may not be tasty to humans, cats may give your feet a lick to take in your perspiration. If you have been doing rigorous activity lately that has led to excessive body sweat, your cat may lick you to get a taste of your yummy sweat!

Do Cats Have a Good Sense of Smell?

Cats have a great sense of smell! The cat’s sense of smell is naturally heightened since they rely on smell to identify their surroundings. Smell has a major influence on the strength of your bond with your cat. 

The feline’s superior sense of smell helps cats learn to distinguish their human companion’s particular scent from other humans. They will immediately recognize if there is something “off” about your smell which is one of the largest reasons they become so territorial with their humans. 

They also know how to distinguish other smells like food and other animals. Your cat can feel betrayed when they smell the odors of other pets (especially cats) on your shoes! So, before letting another cat rub on your leg, think about how your feline friend at home would feel.

Do Cats Love the Pheromones From Our Feet?

The pheromones on the bottom of our feet attract cats because our sweat glands emit many pheromones. Cats have 200 million scent receptors that can take in endless smells! Their excellent sense of smell attracts cats to strong odors like feet where humans emit their intensest smells.

You may notice your cat beginning to get excited when they wag their tail or rub their neck on your feet. The most direct way to tell if a cat is relaxed is if they are exposing their belly. An exposed belly proves the cat is at ease.

Humans sweat a large amount each day through their feet. The less circulation that your shoes have, the better it is for cats. Decreased circulation creates a sweatier and stinkier foot for your cat to sniff or lick!

Why Does My Cat Sleep On My Feet? 

Your furry feline may sleep at the foot of your bed for their comfort and safety. The number one reason your cat will sleep at your feet is that they are your cat’s comfort zone. The smell of your feet sedates your cat.

The foot of your bed is also close to the doorway, which gives the perfect view of multiple rooms. Cats are primal creatures who focus on safety, so they are likely to sleep with a close watch on the entry.

Keeping watch on the entryway with their human companion to their back is a cat’s ideal sleeping position because they are protected from both sides. From your cat’s flank, they can rely on you to protect them. From the front, they can rely on themselves for protection.

Why Does My Cat Get Crazy When He Sniffs My Shoes?

A lady tying her shoe laces.

A lady tying her shoe laces.

When cats get a whiff of peculiar odors, they might get excited. Excited behavior can include pacing, meowing, or tail wagging. Human feet carry pheromones which is an irresistible odor that excites your feline. 

Felines can become obsessed after smelling an odor they enjoy. The foreign odors of your feet will likely excite your cat because of the unfamiliar places you have been. If you carry smells of other animals, this can send them into frenzies.

Why Do My Cats Rub Their Faces On My Shoes When I Come Home?

Cats rub their faces on shoes when you return home as a way of reclaiming their territory. 

After a long day of spreading your cat’s scent over the world, your shoes may become scent-free. A scentless shoe is problematic for your cat, who wants its odor to spread everywhere you travel! After all, as you walk around your workplace or your daily coffee spot, your cat’s odor is going to spread.

The more your cat’s odor spreads, the better. Cats love to feel superior, so when other cats smell their scent on their owner’s shoes after a long day at work, they will feel intimidated. This intimidation increases your cat’s standing in the social hierarchy, the main component of the cat’s social life.

Why is My Cat Obsessed with Attacking My Feet? 

Cats may attack your feet out of aggression or out of necessity. In some cases, cats may mistake your feet for a predator. Since they are attached to your body, they are also one way of attacking you.

Feet are the only appendage cats can directly reach humans, so attacking feet is the cat’s only defensive strategy when they feel threatened.

Cats may also attack your feet to communicate with you. If they swat at your feet non-aggressively, it may indicate a need like food or water. If your cat uses aggression to beg for food, you may need to train them in other tactics or consult a veterinarian.

Are Human Feet the Ideal Size for a Cat’s Prey? 

The domestic feline loves to pounce on feet because human feet are the ideal size for prey. If your cat has ever jumped on your foot as you move it under your blanket, they are probably mistaking it for a mouse or rat. Small mammals like bunnies, rats, and birds are the most common prey for cats.

When you begin wiggling your toes, your primal feline might pounce.

When cats swat and bite, that means they are feeling aggressive. Swatting does not mean your cat wants to start a playful war. Give your cat their space and let them calm down before trying to extend your legs or move your feet again.

Lindsey Browlingdon