What is a cat loaf?
If you have ever seen a cat with it's legs folded up underneath so that it is the shape of a loaf of bread, you have seen a cat loaf. This "cat loaf of bread" is also known as a tugboat, and hillspet.com also lists potato cat, hovercat and turkey cat as other names for cat loaves. It's an adorable position that has endeared itself to cat lovers everywhere!
But, why do cats loaf? According to Inverse, cats in a loaf position are relaxed and feel safe. With their paws tucked underneath them, their claws are not in a position to fight, so if you see your cat loafing with it's claws beneath them, you know they don't feel like they need to defend themselves. You can take that catloaf as a compliment!
Another reason you might see a loaf cat is because they are trying to stay warm. In this article by the dodo, they note that a cat's comfortable temperature is a little warmer than we usually like it. They prefer a temperature around 70 degrees, so if it's cooler in your home, they might tuck their legs in to keep those appendages warm. If they are napping, they aren't keeping themselves warm by expending energy running or jumping, like they would when they are playing, so a cat bread loaf is a good way to keep warm for a cozy nap.
Inverse also cautions that cat loafing might be a sign that they are in pain. It says to watch for all 4 paws to be tucked underneath. If they are still perched up on their paws that could be a sign of pain, so it says to inspect their paws to make sure they're not trying to communicate that something is wrong.
And the dodo even categorizes different types of cat loaves! There is the full loaf where all 4 legs and tail are tucked underneath. Then there is the partial loaf, where the front paws might be untucked. If a cat's front legs are straight out in front, I've seen that called the sphynx loaf after the famous Egyptian sphynx! Other type of cat loaf the dodo mentions is the boat loaf, where one elbow is out further than the other. and the face loaf, which is a full loaf, but with their head down. It says if you see your cat doing the face loaf, they low on energy or super lazy which is the purrfect opportunity for you to get a cute catloaf photo!
If you like cat loaves, check our our loaf pin and show the world your enthusiasm for the loaf!