Cats have a reputation for being disloyal, at least compared with dogs. However that can be an unfair reputation in most cases. Your cat will often show its affection for you, and it's important to know just how it does so you can respond in kind. This will help you to build an even stronger bond with your pet.
Cats purr when they are happy and content. It is usually a sign that a cat is showing affection towards you or someone else, although very occasionally it can be used to signal discontent, stress and even sickness. However given the circumstance it should be possible to differentiate between these two very different emotions. As always, if you aren't sure about your cats health you should visit a vet.
A cat wanting to show affection will also be willing to rub against you, often while purring. If a cat trusts you, then it will be comfortable in your arms and will usually allow you to pick it up. Another common signal of trust is rolling over to expose its belly, which is a cats weak point.
If your cat shows some or all of these signs of affection then it is likely to be content and happy. A consequence of happiness is the loyalty of the cat will increase. Look out for other signs of affection such as licking or rubbing its nose against you, or even bringing what the cat considers presents to you. Dead mice might not be appetizing to you, but it does show your cats love towards you.
It's important not to try and force your cat into doing any of the above. If you treat your cat well, feed it properly and allow it the freedom it needs then over time your relationship will build naturally.
Richard Cross is owner of the Pets Clinic website [http://www.petsclinic.org]. Pets clinic provides information and advice about pet cats and many other pets, with new articles added daily.