In this TikTok video the cat owner thinks that her cat behaves weirdly. The video shows 5 different types of ‘weird’ feline behaviour. I thought I would try and explain them so that they are no longer weird but normal in the context of a domestic cat’s mentality. The voiceover is male but this is a computer-generated voice, in my opinion. The owner is likely to be a woman which is why I have referred to her as female. If you watch the video first you can then refer to my explanations afterwards. If you disagree, please tell me in a comment. All sensible comments are welcome.
Knocking items off a mantelpiece
This ginger tabby knocks all the plants off the fireplace and looks at them as they fall to the ground. He is entertaining himself. He is animating the inanimate objects that are placed on the mantelpiece. He is bringing them to life. This, to me, indicates a lack of stimulation. His human-created environment is too sterile. It needs enrichment. He needs mental stimulation. Without it being provided by his owner he provides it himself. He needs to chase a prey animal. Domestic cats instinctively respond to fast movements because they signify that a prey animal is present. Knocking plants of the mantelpiece creates a fast-moving object. This is interesting to him.
He scrapes the water droplets into the plughole
I don’t think he is actually scraping the water droplets into the plughole. He is scraping objects that smell and which could be food to him into a fictional hole in the ground. He is burying his food because it is not good enough or because he is not hungry enough to eat it and is caching it. It is the kind of feline behaviour that you see when they have eaten enough of the food that you have provided and decide to walk away from it. Or they don’t like what you’ve given them. Then they bury it. It’s a signal from cat to owner that they find the food unacceptable. This might be and probably is because they are not hungry enough. In some ways it is also a product of boredom. This is because domestic cats ‘comfort eat’. Cat food has to be really tasty for them to eat it for pleasure. If it’s not then they might do this. I think these water droplets smell of food or the sink as a whole does.
He likes to be petted when he eats
I find that if my cat is slightly reluctant to eat the food that I have given him when I pet him it encourages him to eat it. It seems to be an instinctive response. I think this owner has the same experience because she won’t know that he likes to be petted when he eats. She will know that when she pets him, he eats. Therefore, she has deduced that he likes to be petted when he eats! My theory on this is that when you pet a cat it is as if they are being licked i.e. groomed. And in a cat’s life the most important or impressionable time when they are groomed is by their mother when they are newborn and young kittens. This is a time when they are being nursed by their mother. They are drinking their mother’s milk. So being groomed by their mother and drinking their mother’s milk go together. They are linked emotionally and mentally in the cat’s head. That’s why petting a cat encourages them to eat.
He tries to get in the shower with me
Some cats like water. It is normally the wild cat hybrids who like to get into the shower with their owner. It is a fallacy to think that all domestic cats dislike water. Water and the sound of water, which a shower makes, can be stimulating and interesting to a cat. And in the shower is their owner. And the shower is filled with the scent of their owner. This is also attractive. And of course, the shower curtain or enclosure is closed which provokes the inquisitive cat to investigate. They want to get behind that shower door to get inside to investigate the cause of that sound and smell. He might get into the shower with his owner if allowed and then jump out because it’s too wet. But this is feline inquisitiveness. We know that domestic cats are very inquisitive which can, on occasions, get them into trouble. This is why they have nine lives.
He always sleeps like this?
What the video maker it is saying is that their cat sleeps in what appears to them to be an uncomfortable position. They are anthropomorphising their cat i.e. humanising him. What is comfortable for a human is not necessarily comfortable for a cat. My cat often sleeps over cables when he could just as well sleep in a slightly different area of the bed where there are no cables. It looks odd to a human but to him there is no problem. In the video, this position for this cat is comfortable. Respect the cat by remembering that they are a cat and not a child.
Below are some more articles on ‘strange cat behavior’ which ceases to be strange when explained.
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