RosieTHIS is how you say "Hello" to a cat.
Cats have an extremely sensitive sniffer and they use their sense of smell to gather information about their surroundings.They are especially good at picking up subtle but very important scents, like those from pheromones. From sense of smell alone they can determine whether someone or something is a threat.
Your cat smells your hand for the same reason he would smell another cat after approaching. It provides information. In the cat world, this sniffing is generally accepted as normal protocol so when you try to pet him right away, it takes him by surprise.
In my business I meet new cats regularly and each and everyone is unique. When I go to the home for the introduction I always greet the cat in this manner. It is usually at the end of the meeting that I get down to their level and actually pet them. By then they are used to me being in their space and are much more receptive to me. It is a matter of giving the cat time to adjust to your presence.
There will be some cats that jump right into my lap when I sit down. That's a bonus, of course.
Like Smudge, for instance. We were friends from the get-go. She just wondered what I looked like from a new angle.
"Not bad. You'll do", she thought.
We had a fun afternoon with little Gwyn today.
We care for her during the week to give mom a little break.
Love the wee barrette.
She's also reaching the stage where she will 'make strange' with people so it's good to see her often so she won't forget her Nan and Gramps.
4 1/2 months & teething.