From time to time you may catch your cat doing something a little strange: kneading. This occurs when your kitten rhythmically alternates her paws, pushing in and out, usually against something soft.
While no one is 100% sure why cats take on this behavior, there are a few theories. For starters, baby kittens will knead instinctively when they’re young to help stimulate their mom’s milk production. In this way, some people think cats continue kneading as they get older because the action reminds them of the rewards of nursing.
Other theories for why cats do this include that it’s their way of showing affection, it helps them limber up after a nap or prepare a soft, comfy spot to lay down in, or that it’s an easy way to scent-mark their territory.
For female cats, many also believe that kneading is a way of displaying to male cats that they are ready and able to mate.