Why Do Cats Love To Knock Things Over?

Written by: Adri Sandoval
Adri Sandoval is the Special Projects Manager for iHeartDogs and iHeartCats. Her work has deepened her love for animals, fostering a strong passion for rescue and animal advocacy.Read more
| Published on December 17, 2017

Watching videos on YouTube of cats knocking stuff over is hilarious (don’t worry, there’s one included at the end of this article)! Watching your own cat knock over a glass of water or a priceless vase is less amusing. Why do cats insist on knocking things over, anyway? Are they just being jerks, or is there more at play?

In the wild, cats are known for toying with their prey before (or even after) killing it. Domesticated cats have the same instincts, so any small object the cat paws at might decide to “run away” and turn into a fun hunt. Cats are also very tactile creatures – they learn a lot about objects by feeling them with their paws. If feeling an item leads to it falling, then they get to watch how it falls, which is probably interesting for them, even if they aren’t actually laughing about it.

Cats also tend to learn very quickly that knocking things over gets the attention of their human. Just like an unruly child acting out in order to get attention when they’re feeling ignored, cats will knock things over to get their human’s attention when they’re feeling bored or restless. In this case, if you ignore your cat every time he knocks something over, he may soon grow bored of the game when he sees it isn’t getting him the attention he’s seeking.

Giving your cat plenty of toys and rotating them regularly to help keep your cat interested may help them decide not to use your stuff as a toy.

If all else fails, you should probably cat-proof your house by making sure nothing breakable is lying where your cat has the opportunity to break it. Either that, or make sure you record the funniest moments and put them on YouTube!

(H/T: PetMD, How Stuff Works, Bustle)

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