Why Does My Cat Lay Down When I Approach? [ Answered ]

Cats love to show affection, and you are bound to fall in love with them. So, if you ask a cat parent to describe their bundle of joy, you will be surprised to know how cats show their love and excitement towards their favorite person. They are adorable, incessant, and at the same time, a furball of madness.

I am sure it will make you want to have a cat too.

Unlike the popular opinion of cats being moody, selfish, or even a tad-bit annoying – there are a couple of cute,  interesting behaviors that cats display from time to time.

One such behavior is when a cat lays down when you approach them. If you have been trying to find the answer to this trait, this article is for you. We have got you covered!

Why does my cat lay down when I approach?

Cat behaviors can be tricky and hard to understand at times. There are a lot of times when logic will seem to fail in front of their behavioral traits or responses to a particular environment.

But there is nothing to worry about, as cat behaviors have been a point of research for years. Thanks to the access of google, information is readily available, and one can now understand their feline friend without many complications.

A cat can lie down when you approach it for many reasons. The most common reason is that it is fond of you and enjoys your company. Cats are expressive creatures, so their displeasure or excitement is pretty evident in how they behave around a person.

Cats are territorial animals, so neither of the two reasons for the reaction should surprise you. If the cat lays down, wags its tail, or licks your face, it directly indicates its love and contentment. On the contrary, if the cat moves away or gets aggressive, it shows its dislike and displeasure of having to share its space with you.

However, there are way more reasons why a cat may lie down when you approach them. This article will discuss these reasons and expose you to the world of cats!

What are the reasons that my cat lays down when I approach?

As discussed earlier, cats flopping in front of you can have many reasons. The most common is that it likes you and trusts you. Let us now discuss the other reasons.

1. Your cat is comfortable around you

If you notice your cat flopping in front of you, be rest assured that your cat is comfortable around you and trusts you. Cats take time to trust their surroundings and feel safe in them. So, cats flopping is a direct indication of comfort.

2. Your cat wants you to pet them

Cats are loving animals, and they crave attention most of the time. While this demand for attention may differ for different cats, it is a common point of interest for most.

Laying down in front of you is your cat’s way of showing that it wants you to pet him or needs your undivided attention. However, could you not reach out to its belly instantly? If you notice this behavior for the first time, we guarantee you will not be able to hold back.

You will reach out and pet your cat wholeheartedly. Be careful as this will act as a repeated action whenever your cat flops down and will set that expectation for it.

It is important to note that cats are predatory creatures. But owing to their small size, they are simultaneously a predator and prey. The belly is a sensitive and vulnerable part of a cat, and access to it should always be a matter of privilege.

It is one of the reasons why you should always be gentle with belly rubs and only proceed to do it when you are sure your cat wants it. Unwanted belly rubs can get your cat in defense mode and disturb the petting process.

3. Your cat is marking their territory

Territorial as they are, cats love to mark their spaces and humans. You often find cats rubbing themselves on surfaces or their favorite humans to leave their scents.

Their cheeks, tails, paws, and face have scent glands, so rubbing these parts ensures that their scent gets scattered around the area, and a loud message is sent across to the other felines in the neighborhood. If you have wondered why your cat rubs your feet, it is exactly why! Your cat loves you and wants to keep you all to himself.

4. Your cat is on catnip

Nepetalactone is the chemical present in catnip that brings your cat to a state of constant drowsiness. The chemical works on making your cat happy and is often accompanied by a little rolling over on the ground before it calms down.

If you think your cat has no access to catnip and is rolling over for some other reason, look out for the products in the household. It will be a shocker how so many products have traces of catnip in them.

5. Your cat is on a cleaning spree

Cats are weird creatures who tend to clean themselves occasionally. One such way of cleaning is by rolling over on the ground. It is also one of the few qualities that set cats apart from other pets.

Interestingly, an average cat spends almost half of its day grooming itself. You will find it cleaning its fur or trying to get rid of the waste and debris.

Cats tend to do this because it helps keep them clean and free of bad odors. But much to your surprise, cats also gravitate towards grooming as a survival mode. It is a common belief that not emitting odor helps keep cats away from predators. The only thing it uses to clean itself is the saliva.

6. Your cat is in the mating zone

In the mating season, unspayed female cats tend to flop to let the other cats know that she wants to mate. When your cat does this intending to gather potential mating partners, you will find that its butt is facing up. This behavior does not have much to do with you but your cat’s desire to mate.

7. Your cat wants to play

Cats love to play. Be it with toys or their favorite human, their tendency to roll over on the ground is pretty peculiar to them. Cats usually do that to tell you that it wants to play and need your attention.

It is to note that your cat’s expectation from you after the flop forms as a result of your previous behavior. If you did play with your cat after it flops, your cat is bound to expect the same every time it flops. If you did not play with it or have been stern in the past, you would know that flopping does not result in playing.

8. Your cat is stretching

As funny as it sounds, cats sometimes like to stretch. Flopping is a little exercise that helps your cat to move around. In other words, flopping on the floor also induces a back scratch for your cat, which it enjoys.

You can say your cat is using the ground as a back scratcher. Look out to see if your cat flops in a specific corner of the household. Fondness towards a corner shows that the cat treats the floor as a scratching tool and enjoys the texture on the floor.


Cats are wonderful creatures, and you will not realize it till you understand their behaviors well. Misjudged as they are, cats’ behaviors can be pretty complex. But if you read through them and give them adequate time and space, they are an excellent inclusion to the family.

It is important to note that relationship building with a cat is much more time-consuming and subjective to the effort, unlike that with any other pet. We hope that this article was helpful.

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