Why Does My Cat Like To Smell My Breath? [4 Reasons]

Have you ever noticed your cat sniffing around your mouth? Have you ever caught your cat trying to have a good whiff of your breath? Wondering to yourself ‘why does my cat like to smell my breath?’

Although this strange behavior may seem odd, there’s actually a good reason why cats like to smell our breath – and understanding it may even help keep both humans and cats healthy.

This article covers:

  • Why does my cat like to smell my breath?
  • Does a cat smelling your breath mean you have bad breath?
  • How do you stop a cat smelling your breath?
  • Is it true that cats can detect medical conditions?
  • What other ways do cats show affection when they smell our breath?

Why Does My Cat Like to Smell My Breath?

There is no way to tell exactly why your cat is sniffing your breath. However, there are a few potential reasons why it may be happening. You can analyze the entire situation to get a rough idea of why your cat may be acting this way.

Cats have a remarkable sense of smell that allows them to understand the world around them. Smelling humans’ breath is one way for cats to identify their owners and get an idea of how their day has been.

Cats may also be drawn to the scent of their own scent on human breath, as humans can often ingest tiny traces of cat fur or saliva when they are close together. Scientists believe that this behavior could be a sign of affection as cats use scent communication to bond with each other and with their owners too!

1. They Are Intrigued by The Scent

Cats love to sniff about. You will probably catch them sniffing around your home quite a bit. They are naturally drawn to scents. It is how they discover the world.

Your breath is just another scent for them to get intrigued by. While they could be sniffing your breath at any time, they are much more likely to be doing it if they catch a hint of food there. So, if you have recently eaten food, and by that, we mean in the last few hours, then this may be the reason why they are trying to smell it. 

Curious cat

2. It Reduces Stress

There is some indication that sniffing your breath could be a stress buster for cats. It just makes them feel much more relaxed. This may be because cats are drawn to naturally warm and moist places (which your mouth certainly is), or they get some sort of sense of relaxation being close to you. 

3. Health

Cats can tell when you are sick. They can sense when something is off, and that scent may come from your breath.

If you are sick and you have noticed that your cat is sniffing your breath a lot, then the cat probably knows what is going on. They just want to make sure that you are OK.

A cat’s sense of smell is so brilliant that you may even catch them sniffing your breath a few hours, perhaps days, before you really start to feel the effects of being sick.

4. They Trust You

No matter the reason why a cat is smelling your breath, we can tell you one thing; if they are sniffing your breath, it means they trust you.

Cats rarely get close to humans who they do not trust, let alone shove their noses anywhere near a person’s mouth.

So, rest assured that if the cat is sniffing your breath, it means that they love you. In fact, in some cases, they may be sniffing your breath because they love you. No other reason. It is just their way of feeling a little bit closer to you. 

Why Does My Cat Like To Smell My Breath?

Does a Cat Smelling Your Breath Mean You Have Bad Breath?

While we suppose that there is a chance that your breath may be smelling a little bit funky, it is highly unlikely that a cat smelling your breath is an indicator that you have bad breath. It is more likely that they are trying to bond with you or they are attempting to relieve stress.

So, don’t worry too much if your cat is suddenly sniffing your breath. It means that they like you. 

How Do You Stop a Cat Smelling Your Breath?

There isn’t really any danger in a cat sniffing your breath, but we understand that not everybody is going to be enamored by the thought.

If a cat is sniffing your breath and you really don’t want it to happen, then gently push them away and say no. In most cases, this should be enough to stop them.

Of course, you may never be able to stop it completely. Sometimes, the curiosity of the cat is going to overwhelm their training. 

Is It True That Cats Can Detect Medical Conditions?

It is possible that cats are able to detect medical conditions in their owners through smelling their breath. Studies have shown that cats can detect subtle changes in human scent, such as those associated with diabetes, cancer and other diseases. However, further research needs to be done in this area before any definitive conclusions can be drawn. In the meantime, it’s important for cat owners to keep up good oral health practices for the sake of their feline friends!

What Other Ways Do Cats Show Affection When They Smell Our Breath?

Cats may also show their affection and even comfort when they smell our breath. For example, cats may purr or nuzzle against us as they sniff our breath. This can be a sign of bonding with their human companion and the close relationship that has been created through mutual trust and understanding. Additionally, cats often lick our faces and mouths when they sense affection from us, which can be a sign of love.

How Does Oral Hygiene Benefit Both Humans and Cats?

Good oral hygiene benefits both humans and cats in several ways. For humans, regular brushing and flossing help prevent cavities, tooth decay, and gum disease. Additionally, regular visits to the dentist help ensure oral health and well-being. For cats, good dental hygiene can help protect them against tartar build-up as well as bad breath. Regular brushing also helps to remove plaque and prevent periodontal diseases in cats which can bring on excessive drooling, abscesses in their gums, infections or even tooth loss.


There are many reasons why a cat may be sniffing your breath. In most cases, it is because they trust you or they want to destress. In others, it may be because they sense that you are sick, or they smell a delicious piece of food on your breath.

Rest assured that if your cat is sniffing your breath, it isn’t a bad sign. It just means that they want to feel close to you.

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