Short meows are friendly greetings. Long drawn-out meows signal distress or need.
Steady purring shows contentment but can also be a calming mechanism during distress.
Plaintive, exaggerated meowing is your cat requesting something like food or play.
Trills, squeaks and chirps are excited, happy vocalizations often during play.
Trills and Squeaks
Howling and yowling indicates anxiety, discomfort or social issues with other cats.
Howls and Yowls
Growling is an extreme sign of threat, usually indicating fight preparation.
Look at body language cues to better interpret your cat's vocal meanings.