How Loud Does Your Cat Purr?

Real Estate Agent with RE/MAX Gold DRE #00697006

jackson ragdollThere's this cat in London who purrs as loud as a lawnmower. His name is Smokey. This cat purrs at 73 to 80 decibels. depending on which news report you read. If I had a cat like that, I'd kick him out of bed. Heck, I'd banish him to the garage. Or at the very least, I'd make sure I never petted him unless I wore earplugs.

Like all short sales are different, all cats purr differently. My cat who died last December, Brandon, had a very loud purr. He used to sit on the bench near me at the breakfast table, and when we would have overnight company, our guests could not figure out where that sound came from in the morning. Brandon was content to just sit there and purr like a popcorn popper. I didn't have to pet him to induce a purr. But he was no lawnmower.

Pica, our marbled ocicat -- the throwaway nobody wanted because he wasn't born with spots -- he purrs very softly. You can't hear him unless you stick your ear on top of his head. His purr is so quiet it's almost a whisper. It's as soft as his velvety coat yet steady and long. He can purr for a good 30 minutes, especially if he's being brushed.

Pia, the cinnamon spotted ocicat, also purrs quietly but loud enough that I can hear her without smushing my ear into her body. I'd say her purr sounds like an electric razor. It's sort of buzzy and raspy. She purrs for as long as she's being stroked. Once I stop petting her, she stops purring almost immediately.

Jackson is a loud purring machine. He sounds like a coffee pot percolates. It's a steady sound and tends to get louder as he gets closer to stopping. His purring, in fact, woke me up this morning. I must have rolled over or wiggled my toes or done something that made him realize there was life in the bed, and I wasn't dead, because he was purring away like there is no tomorrow. I think he was just happy to see a live person.

Thank goodness none of them purr loud enough to be mistaken for a vacuum cleaner.

Photo of Jackson: Elizabeth Weintraub, Sacramento short sale agent

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Elizabeth Weintraub is co-partner of Weintraub & Wallace Team of Top Producing Realtors, an author, home buying expert at The Balance, a Land Park resident, and a veteran real estate agent who specializes in older, classic homes in Land Park, Curtis Park, Midtown, Carmichael and East Sacramento, as well as tract homes in Elk Grove, Natomas, Roseville and Lincoln. Call Elizabeth Weintraub at 916.233.6759. Put our combined 80 years of real estate experience to work for you. Broker-Associate at RE/MAX Gold. DRE License # 00697006.

Photo: Unless otherwise noted in this blog, the photo is copyrighted by Big Stock Photo and used with permission.The views expressed herein are Weintraub's personal views and do not reflect the views of RE/MAX Gold. Disclaimer: If this post contains a listing, information is deemed reliable as of the date it was written. After that date, the listing may be sold, listed by another brokerage, canceled, pending or taken temporarily off the market, and the price could change without notice; it could blow up, explode or vanish. To find out the present status of any listing, please go to


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Nancy Milton Holtzscher
RE/MAX Alliance in St.Louis' Illinois suburbs - Edwardsville, IL
Edwardsville/Glen Carbon, Illinois Broker, REALTOR

My three cats, Roxanne, Stanley and Bella, purr very little, which used to make me wonder until I heard about Smokey. Now I am grateful!

Mar 31, 2011 04:39 AM #1
Donne Knudsen
Los Angeles & Ventura Counties in CA - Simi Valley, CA
CalState Realty Services

Elizabeth - Oh, I do miss having a kitty around, especially their purring.  I used to have two who lived to be 18 & 17 but they died several years ago and now its just hubby and me and the three drool creatures (who never purr).  I'm afraid to get another kitty around here.  We have coyotes around here and several neighbors have lost their kittys to the coyotes.  I couldn't handle that if that ever happened to me.

Mar 31, 2011 04:56 AM #2
Elizabeth Weintraub Sacramento Realtor Top 1%
RE/MAX Gold - Sacramento, CA
Put 40 years of experience to work for you

Hi Nancy: I've never had a cat who didn't purr. Do they not purr even when you give them treats and brush them?

Hi Donne: There's a way to take care of that problem. Don't let your cats go outside. Mine are indoor cats. They live longer. And they're just as happy. Owls steal them, too. You should get another cat. Maybe two. :)

Mar 31, 2011 05:07 AM #3
Gary Woltal
Keller Williams Realty - Flower Mound, TX
Assoc. Broker Realtor SFR Dallas Ft. Worth

Elizabeth, this is such a fun post topic. That London cat sounded like a lawn mower if the decibels were that high. Wow and you know the individuality and the personality of all your cats well. Me not being a cat person but when I pet them and they start that purring it always amazes me the sound.

Mar 31, 2011 05:12 AM #4
Chris Ann Cleland
Long and Foster REALTORS®, Gainesville, VA - Bristow, VA
Associate Broker, Bristow, VA

Our black cat Shadow has a weird, raspy meow and his purr is inaudible. Like your Pica, we have to have our ears mashed on him to hear it.  Then his dad, Gray Kitty, is the total opposite.  He purrs very loud.

Mar 31, 2011 05:21 AM #5
Vickie Slade
Colorado Landmark, Realtors - Boulder, CO
Service You Can Trust ~ Someone You Can Depend On

Elizabeth, I love the picture of your kitty.  We don't have any cats, as I am sadly allergic to them but I love them.  Each seems to have its very own unique personality and (what I am just learned from your post) their very own distinctive purr. 

Mar 31, 2011 05:28 AM #6
Mike Kazi - San Bernardino, CA

Great blog ! Thank you so much for your nice sharing .Wil be glad to have some business with you .

Mike Kazi

Mar 31, 2011 08:06 AM #7
Elizabeth Weintraub Sacramento Realtor Top 1%
RE/MAX Gold - Sacramento, CA
Put 40 years of experience to work for you

I''ve always had cats that purred. And they all do little feelies -- that kneading action when they are very very happy. Good to hear, though, Chris Ann, that you too have a very soft purring cat. At first when I noticed it I thought that Pica wasn't purring at all, but I could feel a vibration going through him, and that's when I figured out it's just super quiet. Sometimes I take him to bed with me at night, but he'll only cuddle up and purr if I have a treat in my hand. Once he finishes gobbling the 2 or 3 treats I have for him, he's gone.

Mar 31, 2011 09:23 AM #8
Virginia Kail
Investments, starter houses, luxury homes,farms, acreage - Cookeville, TN
True Blue Realty, Homes and Land for Sale

You got me with the vacuum cleaner comment!  lol.  We have cats too, and they explode at the slightest hint of the vacuum cleaner, so one that purred like said offensive device would certainly cause distress in our household.   :)

Mar 31, 2011 02:18 PM #9
Tammy Lankford,
Lane Realty Eatonton, GA Lake Sinclair, Milledgeville, 706-485-9668 - Eatonton, GA
Broker GA Lake Sinclair/Eatonton/Milledgeville

Elizabeth- two of my three purr so softly you can't hear it unles you get get very close.  Gabby... well she's up there.


Apr 01, 2011 03:30 AM #10
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