We hate to be the bearers of bad news.
Even after a blah day, coming home to your purring cat sure does make the office drama or spat with cousin Jack fade away. But as it turns out, your darling Smokey or Tennessee's purr may have nothing to do with happiness from being reuinted with you, dear owner.
"All behavior depends on history, context and expectation," says Tony Buffington, a cat expert and veterinarian at Ohio State University to Wired. "So it's naive to think that cats can only purr for one reason—it's like thinking that people can only laugh for one reason."
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As the article explains, it appears that cats purr as a self-soothing mechanism. For instance, they may purr when they are ready for dinner time or stressed about something. Purring can even indicate that your beloved pet is in pain. To decode what your kitty's purr means, Buffington advises that you consider what led to the purring in the first place and what happens next.
Well, now we have a new theory about what all that purring around Rover really means.