Attention Seeking Behaviour in Cats
I might be out on a limb but I don't think that cats, through certain types of behaviour, seek attention from their human caretaker. I think we are anthropomorphising cats when we say that our cat is seeking attention through vocalisations or being naughty or touching us with their paw etc..
You see, my theory is that the act of seeking attention is a human behaviour. It is the behaviour of a child perhaps who might feel vulnerable and needy and also perhaps excitable for whatever reason. The reason will often be down to how the child has been raised but attention seeking behaviour is about needy and vulnerable people who need other people to pay attention to themselves. Once people pay attention to them they are satisfied but they are not seeking something other than that.
By contrast, the domestic cat who vocalises a lot, directed at the human caretaker or the domestic cat who is, in human jargon, misbehaving, is seeking something which is not attention to himself per se but is seeking food or play or to go outside through a locked door etc.. There are an endless number of possibilities but the cat will be seeking something tangible from his human caretaker which goes well beyond simply paying attention to him.
The purpose of a cat's behavior described as an attention seeking behavior is to receive something which furthers his cause and meets his objectives but the cat is not seeking reassurances as is the case with a human who is involved in attention seeking behaviour.
If I am correct attention seeking behavior in cats is anthropomorphising the cat; treating the cat as a human family member, usually a child. People generally relate to their cat as a mother relates to a young child.
Note: this is a personal view. Many people have different views which I accept.
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