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Why does your spayed female cat carry dirty socks around in her mouth then breathe and purr loudly as she humps the sock?

In this case, since it is a dirty sock, the cat is showing affection by wallowing in your scent. Animals have a greatly different response to scents than humans do; they love them! The more intense, the better. Humping the sock is a way of showing the intensity. The cat cannot think of another way to express it. This behavior is not of a sexual nature. Many cat do this because they were taken away from their mother to early. The cat finds comfort in needing and sucking on the sock--the sock is taking place of the mother. Many cats will do this to pillows, blankets and some will even get into humans hair and do this. Don't worry--this is fairly common.
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