Anybody that's browsed the internet long enough can attest that cats can be some purr-ty strange creatures. In an effort to get to know our feline friends a litter better, we sunk our claws into some of their pawsitively odd behaviors and threw our findings into this cat-astrophic installment!
Our cats are some pretty strange creatures, but one of their most meme-worthy traits is their desire to sit inside of small spaces, most specifically cardboard boxes. While we think it's adorable, to your feline friend it's about more than just being cute. Researchers at the Utrecht University in the Netherlands were just as perplexed as the rest of us and, taking a day off from curing the nastiest of diseases, decided to set their sights on cats. What they determined is that when a cat clumps itself into a small space, it may be coping with stress. Being encased in its 4 walls, a cat can tend to feel a sense of security and warmth that helps calm them.
Let's face it, your cat can be a handful, especially when it decides to just randomly knock over your finest possessions. It's not just being a big feline jerk, however. In fact, it's believed that your furry friend is practicing its hunting strategies, specifically when it toys with its prey before murdering it. As your cat learns its surroundings, it is likely to test out some of your favorite inanimate objects to see if it'll try to scamper off and give a good hunt. Though cats eventually learn this isn't the case, they also realize that knocking over items produces a different reaction - the presence of its human companion. If you notice your feline knocking over a lot of your stuff frequently, try giving it a little attention. It's either that or it just really doesn't like your stuff in its personal space.
Cat Chat Fever
You're lounging around one day enjoying your silence when suddenly, from a corner of your house, you hear this strange chattering. Your mind may wander to something sinister in your home, like a being from another world, but you can just tuck that silliness back into the deepest recesses of your brain. What you're actually hearing is your cat who, experts believe, could be making noises of frustration at its inability to hunt viewable prey. Another far more gruesome theory points to the chattering being a reflex motion linked to your cat's instinct to bite down on its prey's neck.
Did our writers just make me say "kitty kisses"? One second, I'll be right back.
(Video editor: Play sounds of footsteps and then a door slamming, and show a bunch of manly stuff like cutting down trees, changing a tire, etc)
<clears throat> Much better... <slight pause> Not to be confused with butterfly kisses, Eskimo kisses, or French kisses, cat kisses are really just another means for that adorable fluff to tell you that they love you. Kitty kisses aren't what you think, however, and actually, involve the cat's eyes. Yes, those adorable, lovable... creepy, lifeless eyes are believed to help your cat express itself. While a slow blink and very relaxed face may look like your cat is about ready to zonk out for the day, what may really be happening is that your fluff is showing you affection. These cat kisses are a common sign of love between a feline and its family.
There are a couple of reasons why your cat may have the tendency to smash its head against yours and, thankfully, self-defense is not one of them. When your cat engages you in some light headbutting, either against your cheek, chin, or the thick of your own skull, it's doing what's known as bunting and allorubbing. Known for being a social response, cat bunting is a means of spreading the scent from their many scent glands to you, further solidifying your place as a close friend or family member. Then again, there's always the small possibility that your cat craves attention or is simply using you as a makeshift scratching post, but chances are that it's creating a bond with you.
When a friend of yours brings a dead mouse to your door, you immediately call the police… or grab 2 forks and some butter, depending on what kind of friends you have. BUT, when your cat does it, you're disgusted but also should feel a little flattered. You see, cats don't deliver dead animals to just any person. They're instinctual creatures still acting out on a natural-born need to hunt and when there's dinner to be had, who better to share it with than family? That's right, if your cat brings you a deceased rodent or bird, it's simply providing its family with the nutrition it needs to survive. Whether or not you decide to eat said nutrition… well, tat's totally up to you.
Everything is Food
Should you start to find inedible items around your house showing up with kitten teeth marks on them, it may actually be experiencing what's known as pica, or the urge to eat non-food items. While pica is not necessarily dangerous to cats, if you observe yours chewing on unexpected items, it's always best to start with a visit to the vet. Additional causes for this strange behavior can include dietary deficiencies, a compulsive disorder, and even feline leukemia or feline immunodeficiency virus. If it is just a case of pica, however, removing what your cat is chewing on and giving it more attention may be the simple fix.
The Kitty Sprint
Unless you're new to the interwebs, you've probably seen a video or two of cats randomly sprinting to no specific destination. Well, while you're sitting there judging their mental state, you may actually want to take a cue from that four-legged speeding fluff-ball. One of the most common reasons for a random outburst is a need to release energy. Instinctively, cats are programmed to hunt and chase down their meals, and since the domesticated house cat is hand delivered its meals, it has this built-up store of energy and no smaller critters to expel it on. If your cat also exhibits obsessive scratching and grooming, it could be showing signs of hyperesthesia syndrome.
Of course, for every time your cat decides to ignore you, there is probably many instances where it decides to plop its furry overgrown body right in the middle of your laptop. Sure, your computer is warm and fits your kitty's body perfectly, but perhaps there's another reason it chose that exact spot. One of the more popular reasons for this intrusive behavior is that your tiny family member is looking for attention. There's a good possibility your cat will sit on anything it sees you messing with, even something as small as a piece of paper.
Some Alone Time
Ever just want to snuggle up to or play with your cat only to be met with the cold shoulder? While you may initially think you're feline is simply oblivious to its surroundings, researchers at the University of Tokyo have found that there's something a bit ruder going on. In a study of 20 domesticated cats, researchers determined that about 30% of the felines sampled essentially ignored those who called out to them. So don't worry, your cat probably isn't a complete jerk and may just be suffering from behavior deeply rooted in its evolution.