Why do cats purr?
Cats purr by vibrating their diaphragms as the air passes through them when they breathe. This makes the purring Why do I still have fleas?sound that everyone who has a cat is familiar with. Cats aren't the only animals that can purr - many big cats can such as pumas and mountain lions, and even raccoons are able to do it.
As far as why cats purr, it's actually done both when they are very happy and when they are extremely sick or anxious. You'll most likely hear your cat purr when you are petting it. The theory on why they purr when they are injured or sick is that it acts to calm them through the rhythmic aspect of the sound. Pregnant cats will often purr when giving birth, which is probably for the same reason. Purring is something cats are born with, and they will do it as kittens when they nurse from their mothers. As adults, they will likely purr whenever you're giving attention to them.
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