It’s Vs Its

It’s Vs Its

There is often confusion between its and it’s. If you delve deeper into this issue, you will see that there is good reason for the confusion. However, if you just want to know what is right, the matter is very simple:


It’s is short for it is or it has. This is a 100% rule. It cannot be used for anything else. If you cannot expand it’s to it is or it has, then it is wrong.


Its is the possessive form of it.
is like his and her.

His is used for a masculine possessor (owner). (These are his pies.)
Her is used for feminine possessor. (These are her flowers.)
Its is used for neuter possessor. (These are its footprints.)



  • It’s been raining for a week, and now it’s starting to snow. (It has been raining for a week, and now it is starting to snow)
  • I think the company wants to have its cake and eat it. (its – possessive form. This is correct.)


  • It’s one of the hardest courses in it’s history. (The first it’s is correct. The second should be its.)
  • The reef shark chases it’s prey through the coral. (should be its, i.e., the possessive form. You cannot expand this to it is or it has.)

If You can’t expand your IT’S to IT IS or IT HAS, then you should be using ITS.


SOURCEGrammar Monster
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