Your Guide to Instagram Cat Hashtags & Captions for Likes
You see them when you load your Facebook feed, purring, rubbing their ears, or chasing laser pointers. You notice them on YouTube, whole compilations of them jumping away from cucumbers or batting troublesome items off of bookshelves. Cats have become, as ThoughtCatalog so eloquently put it, the “unofficial mascots of the internet.” It’s no wonder that they’ve come to rule Instagram as well, a platform dedicated to sharing the interesting and adorable. In fact, many cats have reached celebrity status thanks to Instagram and sharing sites like it.
Now, many users hope to capitalize on this feline fame trend by putting their own animals on display. You probably know a tabby owner or two that constantly uploads photos of their cats in silly poses. If you’re reading this, you’re likely a cat owner yourself who enjoys the feline Instagram parade and hopes to get in on the action. If that’s the case, then look no further. This guide will educate you in the most essential tool for viewers and posters alike when it comes to Instagram cats: the hashtag.
Make no mistake, there is more to creating a successful Instagram cat account than simply adding a few dozens hashtags on the end of a caption, but without the hashtag, you can be certain that you’re not getting very far. In fact, according to a 2014 Instagram study by Simply Measured, posts that had at least one hashtag registered an average of 12.6% more engagement than those without any. The hashtag is all about visibility. It catalogs your image, making it accessible to not only people who already follow you, but also people who view that hashtag. That’s right, people will click on hashtags to see similar images. That’s how they are able to find new pictures associated with their interests and new accounts to follow. No hashtag? No visibility.
If you’re a viewer and are new to hashtags and how they work, it’s time for a crash course in how to find great content that interests you. Many viewers might find hashtags annoying, but they likely don’t appreciate how helpful those hashtags really are. They are organizing these images for you, making it a lot easier to stay focused on what you love. That’s a good thing. Next time you see a hashtag that makes you want to roll your eyes, click on it instead (and enjoy).
But They ARE Annoying, Aren’t They?
Correction: they can be annoying when used poorly. There are some helpful tips that posters can heed to avoid alienating or confusing viewers with hashtag heavy captions.
- You don’t need to use every hashtag every time. Choose 3-5 relevant hashtags and cut it off there.
- Choose different hashtags; don’t use the same 3-5 each time.
- Make sure the hashtags you use are appropriate. Some hashtags, like #catsofinstagram, will always be fine. However, others, like #tacotonguetuesday, should be reserved for Tuesday.
- If you have some lengthy hashtagging, consider adding it in a comment to avoid obscuring your caption.
These guidelines will keep you visible and relevant without bogging your feed down with links.
How Do I Know Which Hashtag to Use?
For some niches this can be complicated topic. Thankfully, it’s not so difficult for cat lovers. All you need do is learn what the relevant hashtags are and what they’re about. In some cases, they may just be about cat pictures. The aforementioned #catsofinstagram is filled with cat pictures. However, some of them may be a little more specific. For example, #catvideo includes only videos and #tacotonguetuesday shows cats with their tongues sticking out and typically only on Tuesday.
We’ve included a list of the most common Instagram hashtags for cats. However, fledgling posters may find more success if they aim for even more specific categories. You might find hashtags relevant to your cat’s breed or coloring (like #tortiecat). You might find hashtags for particular conditions that your pet has (like #nublove). Think about what makes your cat unique and do a little research.
Allow our list to get you started and then try the following:
- Find cat accounts that you want to emulate and see what they use for hashtags.
- Instead of looking for a list of hashtags, Google the topic you want with a hashtag (like #catsinhats) and see if it’s actually a thing.
- Don’t be afraid to mix it up a little and sneak in a hashtag of your own creation.
Note the example above. Bellebean3858 uses three general cat hastags: #haveyouseenmycat, #catsofinstagram, and #cats_of_instagram. She also uses a themed hashtag specific to her: #seniorcats.
Your cat is unique, adorable, and amazing. Of course he is; he’s yours. Now, it’s time to show the world. Next time you capture a kitty Kodak moment, choose 5 hashtags to add either in the caption or in a comment:
- 2-3 general cat hashtags
- 1-2 themed hashtags specific to your cat’s coloring, breed, or something that’s going on in the photo
- 1-2 general animal hashtag
Do this several more times and watch the likes roll in. Soon everyone else will learn what you already know: your cat is internet gold.