The reasons why your cats lick you are various. It might be their way of bonding with you or just because of boredom coping, stress relieving. In those cases, cats lick not only themselves but also the ones they like.
But you might be wondering: why does my cat lick my nose? Well, because he loves and trusts you so much. So, he chooses the highest point of your face to get most of your attention and tell you what is on his mind.
Why Does My Cat Lick My Nose?
“You’re My Human.”
Body language plays a critical role in cats’ life as their main method to communicate with each other. Grooming each another is a domesticated cats’ favorite type of body language. When your cats want to express their acceptance or faith, they tend to apply this mutual behavior to their owner. This is also true in the case of dogs which often lick your feet to show their affection.
Normally, a cat licks his peer on both ears or at the back of the other’s head. Only cats whose connection is close can lick each other’s faces. So, you should be happy because these wet “kisses” on your nose are amiable signs of how your fluffy ball trusts and cares for you. They won’t leave you alone as a result, too.
“Here Lemme Help!”
As said, cats love cleaning themselves and those close to them. In a nest, they help their family members groom where it is admittedly difficult for one to clean by themselves (on the top or the back of one’s head, for example). That’s why it is widely believed that, by licking your nose, your little buddy is trying to help you groom yourself.
Cats and some other animals like salty flavors. When they lick you on the nose, they could be both trying to tell you “I like you. Now, get up and feed me!” and tasting a bit of salt on your nose. And let’s not omit the possibility that there is something with tasty aroma on your skin that your feline friend wants to taste more.
It’s a Kittens’ Thing
Cats are nocturnal in general. Kittens are energetic (some may be to the point of ADHD). Combine these two conditions and you will have an overly enthusiastic little fluff-ball, which is up and wants to play at the most ungodly hours. But like babies, cats are innocent and don't realize they are annoying you.
Photo credit: Cherry-Merry
Newly weaned kitten of 12 weeks old might still be recovering from the shock of being weaned a few weeks prior. That’s why some too-early-weaned cats will try to nurse all sorts of thing. And your nose might just happen to resemble their mother’s breasts.
Mother cats lick and groom their kittens, especially their faces, for some more purposes than just to keep the little ones clean. While cleaning the kitten’s face, momma cat can simultaneously do other things like rousing the younglings for nursing, learning each other’s scent, and bonding with them specifically.
Therefore, if your kitten, who is orphaned, seems always to be licking your nose, he may be missing his mother and attempting to regain the bond with his new caregiver.
He May Is Be Hurt or Stressed Out
Like some other animals, cats often lick themselves or anybody they love when they’re uncomfortable or in pain. They more likely give your nose the top priority so that they could have your undivided attention.
When you move to a new house with your cat, he may feel anxiety. So, he excessively licks himself or you as a coping mechanism. Or, if you aren’t there, he might find household items such as a toy (a cat scratching post, for example) or a piece of furniture to lick or suck on.
When your cat was a kitten, his mother would lick his face and body constantly to keep him clean, as well as to show affections. This is soothing to cats.
Stress affects people just as severe as it does cats. Your feline friend obviously knows this. So, when he thinks his human is experiencing a lot of stress, he would do the same to sooth you.
What to Note If Your Cat Lick Your Nose Abnormally?
Give Your Cat a Proper Medical Solution
If your obedient cat acts oddly all of a sudden, he may be unwell. Therefore, above anything else, if you have a bossy cat which suddenly or excessively licks you (and on the nose at that), you should take a very close look at him. Be sure to check whether there are any inflammations on his skin, or if he has any visible injuries. Don’t hesitate to call your vet if needed.
If your cat is diagnosed ADHD, the vet will advise you to give him anti-depressants or valium. These medicines aren’t harmful to your beloved fluff-ball; they only help him calm down a bit.
Give Your Cat a Proper Physical Solution
As much as being a sign of affectional showing, many cat owners don’t like it and deem it unacceptable. But most cats will grow out of such act naturally. Therefore, in the case of kittens, the nose-licking behavior will abate when they get older.
In the meantime, you can either humor your little kitten or employ some suggestions as followed to repel your cat:
- If it really displeases you, you can just lock him out of your bedroom using a cat gate. So, he can’t sneak in to lick your nose anymore. But remember never to employ any violent method which only scares and angers your cat.
- Tire your ADHD-like kitty out with toys and exercises before bedtime will help. Your kitten’s ultimate purpose for licking your nose maybe because he wants you to play with him. That means there is too much energy contained inside his tiny body, and he needs to burn off some of it.
- Keep a can of pennies near you. Cats detest loud noises, so whenever they want a taste of your nose, just shake it hard at him.
- If the idea of a noisy can of coins irked you, let’s use the traditional approach. As much as cats love grooming, they don’t want to get their fur wet. Hence, you could keep a spray bottle by your side always and use it to spray the overly active cat in order to discourage his attempt to lick your nose. But don’t ever spray water directly on his face nor should you ever drench him.
Also, combining with straightforward gestures (like pushing his head away from your nose, clapping your hand loudly, setting him on the ground) will be efficient. He will get what it means and will cease to lick your nose eventually.
Any cat owner wants their feline companion’s familiarity and faith. However, sometimes the cat’s ways of speaking his mind, like licking your nose, aren’t all pleasant and welcomed.
It’s not wrong if the answer to the question “Why does my cat lick my nose?” is “Because he loves you!”. But if you ever need to restrain your feline pal from this act of love by whatever methods, always do it with love and patient. Never use harsh punishments.
The most powerful language is love. Because all animals can understand love, you’ll only need to train your cat with heartfelt cherish. And your efforts will be rewarded!