Cats have a reputation for knocking things off counters and shelves. In fact, a quick online search will reveal a ton of cartoons and movies showing cats shattering objects in just this manner. Anyone who owns a cat might find this annoying.
Why do cats continually ruining our possessions? Like with most pet activities, there are a number of different reasons why your cat likes to knock things over.
Predatory urges are ingrained in cats that only live inside. They are regarded as “true” carnivores, which explains why. In fact, because they provide a platform for these characteristics to be expressed, cat toys like kick sticks, laser pointers, and wand toys will be enjoyed by your cat. They are knocking your pen around your desk, trying to determine if it is a good target. In addition to using their noses, cats will also use their paws to explore their environment.
Cats are considerably clever than most people assume. In the absence of adequate mental stimulation, cats are prone to becoming bored. Your cat may engage in a number of ostensibly annoying activities just because it needs additional stimulation. If he doesn’t get enough stimulation through active play, your cat can start trashing your furniture, climbing your curtains, and playing with items that aren’t meant to be cat toys, including things left lying around on worktops. Because this behavior is a normal predisposition for cats, it is not suggested to correct your cat for tipping items over.
Pleading for attention
Once a cat realizes that its owner runs over when they knock things over, it only takes a few times for them to knock something off a counter. If your cat needs your attention, it might start throwing things off counters to get it. When your cat knocks anything over, try not to jump up and reinforce the behavior by doing so. Fallen pens and keys can be picked up later, but if your cat knocks over a package of food or smashes a coffee cup, you must take precautions to prevent them from injuring themselves.
How Might This Conduct Be Avoided?
However, there are a few things you can do to limit the harm your cat causes by throwing objects off of counters. As a result, your cat might prod objects that don’t even remotely resemble mice or bugs. Set aside time to play, especially with toys that appeal to a child’s natural predatory inclinations, such kicksticks and wand toys, to prevent boredom. These toys stimulate the mind and body while giving your cat’s natural tendencies a respectable outlet. If you play with your cat frequently, they may lose their enthusiasm for knocking things off counters. But it’s important that this fun continue for a while. Most cats will gain from 20 minutes each day of vigorous play. In addition to routine playing, redirection may be helpful. If you see your cat about to jump onto a counter or table with items on it that they might want to knock over, you can divert them by starting a spontaneous play session.
Another method to keep your cat interested in its toys and away from your stray pens is to rotate its toys. To minimize boredom, it’s essential to give your cat a choice of toys to choose from, and it’s also important to rotate up those toys periodically. Simply place half of your cat’s toys in a plastic storage container and rotate them with some dry catnip. Once a week, collect all the toys that are currently on display and swap them out for the ones in the storage tote.
Puzzle feeders can also be a helpful tool, to sum up. If your cat is already knocking things off of your worktops, using puzzle feeders, especially the ones that get knocked around so that the kibble could come out, can be a wonderful outlet for them. You can minimize their propensity to tip over things by limiting their access to certain items. If you like to show off trinkets, keep them up high on shelves or in a locked curio cabinet so your cat can’t access to them.
You cannot stop your cat from instinctively pawing at things. However, if you are aware of the causes of their compulsion, you can give them positive outlets for their behavior.
READ NEXT: The 8 Best Cat Trees of 2022
RELATED: Why Is My Cat Hiding?