Why Is My Cat Shivering While Purring? (3 Reasons)

Why Is My Cat Shivering While Purring

If your cat is shivering and purring when you’re fussing and petting them, it’s not that uncommon.

In this article, I’m going to answer; ‘why is my cat shivering while purring?’

Here is a look at the possible reasons why your cat is doing this, as well as what the solutions are if needed.

Why Is My Cat Shivering While Purring? (3 Possible Reasons)

There are a few reasons your cat may be shivering and purring while you’re petting them.

There is also a difference between shivering, vibrating, and shaking – I will also try and help you identify exactly what your cat is doing.

Three of the most common reasons that may explain why your cat is shivering while purring are:

Your Cat Is Excited and Enjoying the Attention

Cats often purr when they’re content, as I’m sure you’re aware, and the vibration of their purring can cause some cats to shake or tremble.

No two purrs are truly the same. You might have a cat that purrs really hard and ends up shaking or doing what looks like shivering when they’re happy.

I have a cat that does this, and she will even drool when she gets really carried away enjoying the attention!

Related Here’s why cats nibble and lick when they’re excited!

Your Cat Might Be Cold

Another possible reason is that your cat is cold. We shiver when we’re cold, so it’s not that crazy an idea.

Keep in mind that cats may have a fur coat on, but they don’t have a lot of body fat to keep them warm. They are more susceptible to the cold than we are.

If your cat is shivering and purring, it’s a good idea to check the temperature of the room and make sure it’s not too cold for them.

You can try wrapping them in a blanket, but most cats don’t like that. A big hug while fussing them should do the trick!

It Might Be a Sign of a Health Issue

Despite the fact that it can mean some cats are euphorically happy when they shiver at the same time as purring – it can also mean they’re in pain.

If your cat is shivering and purring, you should pay close attention to their behavior and how they are acting throughout the day.

Are they eating and drinking normally? Losing weight? Does it seem like they don’t like to be touched or fussed as much?

As a general rule of thumb, if you have any concerns at all it’s best to take them to the vet to rule out any medical conditions.

In most cases, shivering and purring is nothing to worry about. It’s usually just a ‘quirk’ or trait of your cat.

Why Is My Cat Vibrating But Not Purring?

There is a difference between shivering, vibrating, and shaking. Vibrating is when your cat’s whole body seems to pulsate or throb.

It’s similar to purring but a lot more noticeable and without any sound. Again, this can be down to excitement or contentment – but it can also be a medical issue.

If your cat is vibrating but not making any noise, you should keep an eye on them and monitor their behavior for any changes.

As always, if you’re worried take them to the vet as soon as possible.

Related Do you know why cats do not hibernate?

Why Is My Cat Shaking? (Not Vibrating or Purring)

Shaking is different from both shivering and vibrating. When a cat shakes, it looks like they are shivering – but they’re not making any noise.

This is often a sign that your cat is in pain, and it’s something you should take seriously.

If your cat is shaking, keep an eye on them and see if there are any other changes in their behavior.

If it’s related to their core temperature or something like their blood sugar level, you’ll notice they have lethargic behavior – if not worse symptoms.

If they seem lethargic or off-color, make an appointment with the vet right away.

If your cat is only shaking its head, hopefully, it’s something as simple as something like a bit of debris in its ear causing them to try and shake it out.

In Summary

In most cases, there is nothing to worry about if your cat is shivering and purring at the same time.

A lot of the clues (and answers) lie in observing a cat’s general behavior. Pay attention to how they’re eating and drinking, how much they’re sleeping, and how they respond when you interact with them.

If you’re concerned or notice any other changes in their behavior that you’re not happy with, it’s always best to get them checked out by a professional.


Image credits – Photo by Sandy Millar on Unsplash


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