Why Does My Cat Smell My Armpits?


Have you ever noticed your cat sniffing your armpits? It may seem strange, but there’s actually a reason behind this behavior.

In this blog post, we will explore why cats have a fascination with armpits and what it means when your furry friend decides to give them a good sniff.

The Sense of Smell in Cats

Before we dive into why cats smell our armpits, let’s first understand their incredible sense of smell.

Cats have a highly developed olfactory system, with around 200 million scent receptors in their noses. To put it into perspective, humans only have about 5 million scent receptors.

This means that cats have a much more sensitive sense of smell than we do.

Marking Territory

One possible reason why your cat may be smelling your armpits is to mark you as their territory.

Cats have scent glands located on various parts of their bodies, including their paws, cheeks, and around their mouths.

When they rub against objects or people, they leave behind their scent as a way of claiming ownership.

By smelling your armpits, your cat may be trying to reinforce their bond with you and mark you as part of their territory. It’s their way of saying, "You belong to me!".

Familiarizing with Your Scent

Another reason why cats smell our armpits is to familiarize themselves with our scent.

Cats rely heavily on their sense of smell to identify objects, people, and other animals in their environment.

By sniffing your armpits, your cat is gathering information about you and getting to know your unique scent.

Cats have a keen ability to remember scents, and they use this information to recognize familiar individuals.

So, when your cat smells your armpits, they are essentially creating a mental map of your scent, which helps them feel more comfortable and secure around you.

Seeking Comfort and Security

Cats are known for their need for comfort and security. They often seek out warm and cozy spots to relax, and your armpits can provide just that.

The armpit area is warm and can emit a comforting scent due to the presence of sweat glands.

When your cat snuggles up to your armpits, they may be seeking warmth, comfort, and a sense of security. It’s their way of finding a safe and cozy spot to curl up and relax.

Curiosity and Exploration

Cats are naturally curious creatures, and they love to explore their surroundings. When your cat smells your armpits, they may simply be investigating a new and interesting scent.

They are curious about the different smells that emanate from your body and want to satisfy their inquisitive nature.


While it may seem odd or even amusing when your cat smells your armpits, there are valid reasons behind this behavior.

Cats use their sense of smell to mark territory, familiarize themselves with scents, seek comfort and security, and satisfy their curiosity.

So, the next time your cat decides to give your armpits a sniff, remember that it’s just their way of connecting with you and exploring their environment.

Frequently Asked Questions

Q: Is it normal for my cat to smell my armpits?

A: Yes, it is normal for cats to smell their owners’ armpits. It’s a way for them to mark territory, familiarize themselves with scents, seek comfort, and satisfy their curiosity.

Q: Should I be concerned if my cat smells my armpits excessively?

A: Excessive armpit sniffing may indicate an underlying issue, such as anxiety or stress.

If you notice any other unusual behaviors or if your cat’s behavior becomes obsessive, it’s best to consult with a veterinarian.

Q: Can I prevent my cat from smelling my armpits?

A: While you can try to redirect your cat’s attention to other activities or toys, it may be challenging to completely prevent them from smelling your armpits.

It’s a natural behavior for cats, and they may continue to do so out of curiosity or comfort.

Q: Are there any health risks associated with my cat smelling my armpits?

A: Generally, there are no health risks associated with your cat smelling your armpits.

However, if you have recently applied any strong-smelling products or medications to your armpits, it’s best to keep your cat away to avoid any potential adverse reactions.

Q: Can I use this behavior to bond with my cat?

A: Yes, you can use your cat’s armpit sniffing behavior as an opportunity to bond with them.

Gently petting and interacting with your cat while they sniff your armpits can help strengthen your bond and provide them with comfort and security.

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