Small cat tattoos have fast become a body art staple. Tattoo artists need to be able to work across a range of design styles as people look to get ink to symbolize their prized pet.
Cats are also recurring themes in entertainment, mystery, fantasy, and history, so being technically dexterous means artists will get a steady stream of requests from cat tattoo aspirants.
As these top 71 small cat tattoo ideas show, there’s no limit to the type, style, and placement of feline body art that you can take as inspiration to your next appointment.
1. Lower Leg and Ankle Small Cat Tattoos
2. Heavy Black Ink Small Cat Tattoos
3. Colorful Small Cat Tattoo Ideas
4. Small Cat Tattoos for the Forearm
5. Realistic Small Cat Tattoo Ideas
6. Simple Small Cat Tattoo Art
7. Upper Arm Small Cat Tattoo Designs
8. Small Cat Tattoos for the Wrist
Small Cat Tattoo FAQs
What does a small cat tattoo symbolize?
Considering how many people own cats it is a bit surprising the amount of mystery and magic felines illicit in people.
Most often cats are associated with luck and a mystical, eternal nature that goes with their nine lives and ability to land on their feet.
Some people choose a black cat as a talisman to ward off the bad luck linked to these animals, while others use a small realistic tattoo design to commemorate a beloved pet.
Where should I place my small cat tattoo?
A small cat design is equally at home in a visible position – such as the wrist, forearm, or ankle – but are also placed in locations where they can either be covered or shown off as well. You’ll find a lot more cat tattoos are etched on the shoulder or blade or center of the back, on the feet and hands, or even behind a collector’s ear.
What other perspectives can be represented by small cat tattoos?
Cats have been associated with the supernatural throughout history, most notably in Egypt, where cats were associated with the Goddess Bastet and the punishment for killing or injuring a cat was quite severe.
In the West, black cats have been harbingers of bad luck as well as having deep associations with witchcraft and the occult.
Why is single needle application popular for small cat tattoos?
Single needle means that only one needle is used in creating a tattoo, and the technique is making a huge comeback as tattoo artists again embrace the fine detail method coupled with increased technical know-how.
Single needle tattoos work brilliantly for small depictions of cats as there can be a huge amount of pinpoint detail etched into the features, fur, whiskers and eyes. Single needle is also a growing staple of women’s tattooing, as they tend to eschew large, grandiose designs in favor of versatile smaller ideas.
What style of cat tattoo should I get?
Just like in placement, small cat tattoos work brilliantly across a range of styles and applications. For people commemorating their pet realistic designs are a perfect fit, while for more humorous, less personal body art linework and cartoon cat tattoos work nicely depicted on a smaller scale.
If you’re looking for a small cat tattoo that is out of the ordinary, heavy black ink felines and geometric styles feature great use of contrasting negative space and shapes.
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