12 Top Cat Tattoo Design Ideas for Men and Women in 2020

Cat Tattoos: The Connection Between Humans and Cats

The love story between humans and these furry felines dates back to the dawn of time. Numerous archaeological expeditions have uncovered graves dating back to the Stone Age with cats huddled against their deceased owners. Even today, many cat owners cannot stand the idea of being separated from their beloved tabby, no matter what. It is not surprising that the English word "cat" comes from the ancient Egyptian name for cats, "caute". The Egyptians were devout cat worshipers who believed the animal was an extension of the moon goddess Bastet.She was not only the guardian of the Pharaoh and of Lower Egypt but also the Divine Mother and a warrior goddess who watched over her beloved subjects.

 cat inspired moon tattoo design

cat tattoo of @mrokat via Instagram

In a lot of ways, the Egyptians saw cats as a representation of their patron goddess because these were renowned for their great hunting gifts and used to protect the food stores of the ancient Egyptians from vermin and rodent invasions. Cats were so revered in Ancient Egypt that killing one was a crime punishable by death. The pages of the story tell of the tragic and brutal death of a man, murdered by an angry mob after he accidentally killed his own cat. Even the official forgiveness of Pharaoh Ptolemy XII  was not enough to save the poor man from his terrible fate.

The idea of associating cats with hunting, protection and motherhood spread to Ancient Rome where cats became the symbol of the goddess Diana. In Ancient Rome, having a cat was supposed to bring good luck to all who shared the home with him and bring them domestic happiness. Even the Nordic peoples took up this idea. Their fertility goddess, Freyja, was not only notable for her beauty, elegance, grace and intelligence, she was also a fierce warrior who protected her people. No wonder cats are seen as a symbol of feminine power and beauty in a caat tattoo!

 rabbit ears cat tattoo design

cat tattoo of @haydee.tattoo via Instagram

Felines have often been associated with witchcraft and paganism in Europe, possibly due in part to the importation of ideas from Egypt and Rome. Diana, the moon goddess, became a symbol of paganism and witchcraft in the Middle Ages. During this time when the atmosphere was heavy with religious repression, free thinkers, creative expression and pagan practices became outlaws and were considered abominable. Alternative thoughts were seen as the work of a satanic force, and all the symbols associated with them were considered evil.

 cat and flower tattoo

cat tattoo of @petromila_tattoo via Instagram

Sadly, cats (and especially black cats) were seen as messengers of the demon and many of the superstitions that we still carry with us today stem from the religious stagnation of the Middle Ages. But one glance at the adorable face of your dear feline will be enough to convince you that there is nothing evil about him.

Cats are free spirits who display great independence and intelligence rarely matched in the animal world. Over the centuries, a collection of stories illustrating their ability to do exactly what they want has been armed. House cats are strange creatures: any minute they happen, they go from rubbing your legs so you are stroking their bellies, to ignoring you superbly. They can be loving and adorable and then totally haughty in the span of a nanosecond. The changing moods of cats have inspired many accounts describing the animal's keen changing abilities.

 cute cat tattoo design

cat tattoo of @piinksoda via Instagram

According to legends, cats can change shape and roam freely between physical and spiritual realities, bringing messages to the deceased. In Japan, there is a legend that a cat could "change" a woman's behavior, which is why the weaker sex is often seen as unpredictable and secretive. For many women, this connection to felines is a compliment and a warning against those who would try to dominate or control them. Quite simply, one cannot control a free spirit.

 black cat thigh tattoo

cat tattoo of @christian_tattoozz via Instagram

Meaning of Cat Tattoos for Men and Women

Cats are more than our furry feline friends. They symbolize a lot of things, including:

  • Female power
  • Luck and prosperity
  • The mystery and the secrets
  • Spirituality and connection with the Divine
  • A link with the afterlife
  • Protection
  • Intelligence and intuition
  • Elegance and refinement
  • Attention
 Tom cat tattoo design

cat tattoo of @mattdoublem_tattooer via Instagram

Different Types of Cat Tattoo Design Idea for Men and Women

Whether you want a lucky cat tattoo, a fat cat image, or even a Felix the cat design on your body, you will find these types of cat tattoos available in all shapes, colors and styles. These designs can represent your favorite cartoon characters, like Garfield, or contain spiritual and tribal elements. Many of these images mimic the natural color of cats (black, white, gray, red, spotted, tabby, etc.) and are sometimes made as a tribute to a great life companion.

 flower and cat tattoo design

cat tattoo of @kittytattoos via Instagram

1. Cat Tattoo Design Idea for Men and Women: Black Cat

When talking about black cats, images of witches, old brooms, and large black simmering cauldrons come to mind. Black cats are, in general, associated with unfortunate changes in fate, and many stories warn us not to disturb the peace of a cat of this color. These cat tattoo ideas come from Celtic culturefor at that time and place the black cats were sacrificed to ward off the demon. For some people, black cats are an omen of destruction, walking silently through the night, which should be avoided at all costs; while for others, the black color of the cat makes it enchanting, mysterious and intriguing. Black cat tattoos are symbols of femininity, mystery and latent power, because of their connections with the unknown and paganism.

 black cat tattoo design

cat tattoo of @rachel.welsby via Instagram

2. Cat Tattoo Design Idea for Men and Women: Cat Footprint

The paw prints represent the emotional or mental overcoming of a difficult moment. They symbolize progress and the need to move forward in life. Have you ever wondered why Japanese and Chinese businesses have small statuettes of cats with a raised paw? In Asian culture, it is an ancient symbol of luck that dates back centuries and originates from the legend of Maneki Neko. While there are several versions of the myth, all of the accounts center on the story of a poor fellow suddenly making a fortune after being good to a cat that raised its front paw in front of him. Cat paw print tattoos represent prosperity, good luck and progress.

 cat footprint tattoo design

cat tattoo of @lewcid_ink via Instagram

3. Cat Tattoo Design Idea for Men and Women: Cat Skull

Skull tattoos are often associated with death, destruction, and disease. The mere image of a skull can get on the nerves and upset many people. But, given this animal's strong connection to the afterlife, cat skull tattoos are considered more of a more subtle way to symbolize your understanding and acceptance of the inevitable. In a way, this tattoo is a sign of bravery because it shows that you are not afraid to face your mortality.
 cat skeleton tattoo design

cat tattoo of @billiebentley_tattoo via Instagram

4. Cat Tattoo Design Idea for Men and Women: Cat Eye

The famous sculptor of the USA, Hiram Powers, said: "The eye is the mirror of the soul... Intelligence, will, is seen in the eyes...". Nothing more true has ever been said about cats. The eye of a cat is often seen as a symbol of intelligence, wisdom and a doorway to the Divine. It is considered to be a secret object of mysticism which allows those who are close to this symbol to approach the elements of life in the hereafter. Cat eye tattoos represent your ability to see more things than they really are. You can analyze a situation and see each action as a manifestation of something bigger.

 cat eye tattoo design

cat tattoo of @romeo.byr via Instagram

 cat eye tattoo design

cat tattoo of @thedarlingapril via Instagram


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