Living with cats is a heavenly lifetime experience. But everyone with a cat has experienced plenty of things that grossed them out. You are not alone. One of the things is being cats licking themselves. Especially their private body parts.

If you have at least 2 cats as your feline friends. You must have noticed a common behavior among them, they lick each other’s private parts. With the same tongue, they eat and drink.

While there can never be one guess for a cat’s odd behavior, the most probable reason Why Cats Lick Each Other’s Bums is that they are trying to greet each other. A familiar or a bad smell, desire for any sexual activity, or acceptance are some other possible reasons as to why your cats lick each other’s bum/private area. 

Let us go into detail for each of the reasons.

Reasons Why Your Cats Lick Each Other's Bums.

5 Reasons Why Your Cats Lick Each Other’s Bums/ Private Areas


1. Greeting

Humans are capable of producing a vast variety of sounds to make sentences.

Just another way to say “Hello there”.

To greet each other, we say “Hello”, “Hi”, and a huge variety of words. 

Similarly, cats communicate as well. But they can’t produce sentences. They don’t have enough brain power to use another method of greeting.

They don’t have thumbs and fingers so that handshakes can be done. They simply bump noses or lick their companion’s private area. 

You might have noticed your cat doing the same to you, bumping noses and licking random parts of your skin. They are saying Hello.

You must like to read about why my cat kisses me with his nose

2. Bad Smell

“You smell, friend.”

If your cat hasn’t bathed in a long time, its friend might be trying to get them clean by licking. Because throwing their friend away into water is not something a “good” cat would do, almost all cats are naturally abhorrent towards the water.

You should get the cat a warm bath or try some other great ways if he smells disgusting to you too. (Keep in mind, never bathe cats unless they are too dirty). 

3. Familiar Scent

“You smell familiar!”

It happens in humans too. Every country, state, house, or place has a different kind of vibe. A different kind of scent. Cats are no different.

They know the scents very well, too. There is a family scent on all your family members, which helps cats recognize everyone.

Even your cat themself has the scent, so they sniff and lick another cat’s bum wondering how in the actual family does this beast have the same scent as me?

They lick it because the other cat has the same scent as them.

4. Sexual Activities

“Babies or something?”

Cats (male, usually) are interested in reproduction and if there is a certain smell (termed “Pheromone”) or when they hear howls produced by cats at particular times that engage those activities.

Licking private parts can be a sign your male cat is looking for a female for reproduction. Cats get aggressive while they are in this period and may fight other cats 

You can get them neutered or spayed (depending on the gender) if you don’t want to have pet kittens.  

5. Acceptance Between Them

Grooming every body part is a motherly behavior in cats. From face to tail, everything. 

If the cats are not blood-related, in a way the other cat “adopted” the cat. They transfer scents through licking. When they accept another cat, they lick, which transfers the scent.

You might also like to read about why do cats like butt pats

How To Stop Cats From Licking Themselves

You can’t. 

You shouldn’t.

It’s their habit. It’s their hygiene. It’s their love. It’s their stress reliever. Cats are independent creatures and don’t like to be prevented from their habits.

You can’t even convince them otherwise unless you know the cat’s body language accurately and can be a feline.

It’s understandable that you may find them licking you unhealthy, since they may transmit disease, but it’s very rare. Just remove your hand whenever it licks you and wash it if you want.

If you prevent them from cleaning their bum or their friend after using the litter box, don’t use toilet paper or water to clean your excretion.

For the sake of humanity, understand that they have four small legs, not enough brain power, and they cannot use water or toilet paper to clean. Understand that they are felines.

Your surroundings and your cat’s hygiene will be too unhealthy if you prevent them from doing that.

Also, check out why do cats raise their butts

Why Cats Lick Themselves

While it may sound gross, it is normal for your cat. It’s a part of their hygiene. 

  • Licking themselves helps relieve stress in cats. Yes, even cats get stressed. They might get depressed if they/you don’t do anything to get them out of all the stress.
  • To bathe and cleanse themselves, c’mon, everyone and everything needs a bath. We would be dying of our own stink 
  • They are cats. Since childhood, they have had the habit of licking themselves. Mother cat cleans the whole body including the private parts to bathe her little kittens.
  • As the saliva touches the warm skin, the saliva evaporates which lowers the skin temperature.

Why Cats Licks Humans

They use their tongue for grooming, for eating, for drinking, And with the same tongue, they lick you. Sometimes, it may cause skin infections in people with lower immune systems. 

According to the CDC, “It lives in the mouths of dogs and cats and is natural flora, and rarely causes disease in humans”. 

So there is no need to worry too much. If a cat doesn’t lick, it’s much of a matter to worry about. Because then, they are not clean.  

They might lick you because:

  1. They love you. It’s a way of showing affection. There are many ways they show affection!
  2. They are cleaning you because they think you can’t do it yourself. 
  3. They want something from you, it’s a plea for attention. Cats like attention, and they want affection. Or it may be just asking you to play with them. If you haven’t given some already, give them their food

“My Cat Licks Her/His Private Parts, How Dirty. How Is It Cleaning Themselves? Ew!?”

Firstly, if you never had a cat, don’t construct opinions. If you have had one, I think you didn’t research enough before getting it.

Cat licking is one of the things cats do all day People do not research about getting the pet but getting it, either way, leads to animal abuse in a way.

Secondly, if you find it so disgusting, cats might find you cleaning yourselves with water and toilet paper. They have no other way to clean themselves. If it’s unclean, what is more, unclean is when they won’t lick themselves. 

Frequently Asked Questions

How does a cat’s tongue help them clean?

A cat’s tongue is covered in hundreds of tiny spikes called papillae that help them with their hygiene. They allow the spines to store and hold. That is the reason their tongue helps them with so many things.

Can humans lick cats?

Why would you want to do that? If you think they are stressed, they can lick themselves, or you can just cuddle with her after providing her favorite food.
Cats can lick because they have spikes on their tongue to go through the fur and calm them down. Their tongue is also quite flexible. Licking them can be extremely unhealthy, they are never clean (poop particles can be stuck, chemicals, etc!).
Your tongue and a cat’s tongue are not the same, they have different chemical substances. It may make your cat feel weird about you.

Why can’t cats meow to say hello?

Meowing is something kittens do to their mothers when they need something, it’s not a way of direct communication. Cats use body language more than vocalizing.

What is neutering/spaying?

It is the removal of reproductive organs in animals. Ovaries and uterus in females, and testicles in males. They prevent infections and different types of cancer in them. Unwanted litters with no one to care for them can lead to them being thrown to the streets or abused.

Why do cats often sleep after they lick?

They are now calmed down and sleepy. As mentioned above, they often lick for peace.

What’s up with cats licking after eating?

It’s a natural habit or instinct, to not smell like food. It might be to maintain general hygiene just like we wash our hands. Furthermore, big cats in the forest clean their paws because they hunt for their food and their paw might smell of their prey, attracting other unwanted predators.

Final Words

meow Bye

That’s it for now.

There isn’t always a perfect reason why cats do weird things with their tongue.

But don’t worry, we are sure it’s not anything serious— unless you are sensitive to their saliva. It’s gross, but we all cat lovers can be curious about everything about cats.

We can never have a clear and accurate reason for any of their behaviors. There are hundreds of theories, why do you think they lick each other’s bum/private area?

These were just my guesses, try guessing yourself now!

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