If you own a cat, you are probably used to this strange and annoying behavior: every time it jumps on the table, it knocks objects off.
Another time, maybe you have gone to bed and left your living room perfectly clean and ready for visitors. The following day, everything that was on the shelves and the tables were thrown on the ground. Why do cats push things off tables? Is it just because it’s fun? Are they just trying to annoy us?
Why do cats push things off tables?
Cats are very curious by nature. When they see something, they might be tempted to touch it. Some cats might not like the texture of the object, depending on their personality. Some cats might want to mark their territory by scratching or sniffing it.
Here are a few reasons why cats knock things off tables.
Train to hunt
When a cat sees an object on the table that is stronger than him, he tries to touch it and throw it. What could be the reason? The cat is a curious animal with a highly developed hunting instinct. When it sees an object, it needs to verify that it is not moving and dead.
Often, we forget that cats in the wild are predators and that they still retain this instinct in our homes.
When your cat deliberately pushes the glass ashtray to the ground, it is because she thinks it is potential food and wants to make sure she paws it a bit.
Cats throw things by accident
Cats are elegant and agile. They roam every corner of the house and climb anywhere. Sometimes, however, with the excitement of a chase game, or their wagging tail, they can “bounce” things.
Having a pet is like having children at home. You will have to accept that things sometimes “fall” and break. Don’t scare your cat by scolding him.
Of course, avoid creating a positive association with destructive behavior in your cat. If that happens, your cat will soon be smashing anything in hopes of getting more rewards.
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Try to attract your attention
If one day your cat accidentally dropped an object and realized that it made you react, it may continue to try to attract your attention.
Care-seeking by their owners is a relatively common behavior in cats that live in apartments. This is because they are bored and do not interact with their owner, who is away from home all day.
For this reason, they often prefer to do silly things to trigger a reaction, even a negative one, in their human. But this can also happen when the cat is hungry, or his litter box is dirty.
In this case, the only solution is to pay a little more attention to your cat: play with him, pet him, in short, interact with him. And most importantly, don’t forget to cover all his basic needs by giving him regular meals and taking care of his routines.
He does it to play
Another reason why cats push things off tables is that they love to play. Indoor life can be a bit boring for some cats. After all, when they were wild, they had something to do most of the time: hunt and catch food.
It can be interesting for your cat to hit an object on your desk, watch it fall, chase it and push it across the floor for a couple of minutes.
It is common for cats to play with their food before eating. Therefore, it is an innate behavior that our feline friends have developed throughout their childhood and adult life.
Related: 10 Ways to Scare a Cat Away without Hurting it
Cats hit things to mark territory
Cats are very fickle animals. You may be looking forward to buying him a comfortable bed, and he decides to sleep on the floor. In the same way, you may claim anything from home on a whim. This could include a table, in my case the one in the kitchen.
If your cat decides that a table is his property, he will not hesitate to claim it. It will stretch out and hit everything on it. Know that “the fault is yours.” After all, you are the one who is invading their territory with strange objects.
The only way to avoid this behavior is to impose a series of “rules” that are “enforced” on your cat. Although you will have to be very consistent, there is no going back. For example, if your cat is not allowed on the tables, do not make exceptions at any time.
He will keep trying his luck, he will try many times, but you must be adamant. Spaying or neutering your cat will decrease its territorial nature.
Cats throw things because they can’t see them
Have you thought that your cat could be losing his sight? Older cats are prone to losing their sight. Their vision slowly deteriorates as they age. Until it is too late, the owner is unaware that something is wrong.
Cats who lose their sight can still live a full and happy life. Cats feel with their whiskers, smell, and hear. However, putting a glass of water on a table has no scent or sound. A blind cat that does not feel it in time could throw it away.
If your cat becomes clumsy, he may lose his sight. You should consult a veterinarian. It may be possible to solve the problem if you catch it early.
How to prevent cats from throwing things on the ground?
It is not enough for you to understand the reasons why do cats push things off tables. I do appreciate your desire to achieve. You need to train your pet not to behave for safety reasons only.
There are several ways you can do to prevent cats from throwing things on the ground:
- Eliminate the temptation. The easiest way to stop cats from pushing things off is not to give them a chance. Do not leave glasses and cups lying around. Place vases and ornaments on tall shelves that your cat cannot access.
- Use a deterrent spray. You could spray a deterrent scent around anything that can break. Please use it with care. Otherwise, your cat will not want to live with you.
- Provide alternatives. Your cat may be throwing things out because he is bored. Provide toys, scratchers, cat trees.
- Play with your cat. If your cat throws things to get your attention, teach him that it is unnecessary. Cats love routine. Set a period of playtime each day with him, and your cat will accept it.
You will have to be patient when teaching your cat not to push things off tables. You may never be able to eradicate the behavior. By following this advice, however, you can at least minimize it.