This is certainly not meant how it sounds. What is being insinuated is that cats are continuously licking, nibbling and suckling their humans, so it may appear as though the cat believes that their human needs a good grooming!
Any cat lover can tell you that cats are fussy about their appearance. In fact, adult cats have been known to spend about half of their waking hours just grooming themselves. Perhaps they see an even bigger need to groom their human.
Although this is not likely the case, there is a reason that cats are continuously licking, nibbling and salivating profusely around their human family members. One such theory is that this is their way of showing us affection as well as a sense of belonging.
Dogs mark their territory in other methods. This seems to be the most naturally accepted method for a feline. Dogs urinate in areas to display that the area is already taken. Licking, for a cat, marks the individual at the other end of their affection as a member of the animal’s family group; allowing a method for the cat to spread its scent. By licking you, the cat is claiming you as their own!
Some people believe that cats lick you after a shower or after washing dishes, that the cat is simply trying to get at the shampoo, soap or lotion that you have used because it tastes good to them. This may sometimes be the case, but is not the overall theory.
It is also believed by some experts that cats that have been orphaned or weaned too early may suckle their human more or lick them excessively because of their past. Others believe that these very actions in kittens may be representative of their stress, anxiety or perhaps they are ill. It could be that these are methods to comfort or pacify themselves.
Some kitties suffer from obsessive-compulsive disorder and thus they will repeat these actions; having trouble stopping – even when a distraction is put in their way. Older kitties may, too, lick and suckle more due to a medical reason. If an older cat begins these actions out of the blue, it may be time to get them to their veterinarian and have them checked out.
Felines are a different breed of animal. It has been proven that they have domesticated themselves, so it is not always clear why they have the actions that they do. But, licking and grooming their human is ordinarily a method for kitty-cats to show their people that they love them and want them in their lives. They are choosing you and thankful that you chose them!