Strange Cat Behaviors: 10 Weird Things Cats Do

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Why is my cat acting so strange? Felines are an inexhaustible source of curious behaviors. Especially for human beings, who often find it difficult to find a logical reason for the things cats do. However, science has deciphered the reasons for most of these behaviors. Knowing them is important, because it is possible that your cat is trying to tell you something important about his condition.

1. Rub Against Your Legs

Surely you recognize the following scene. You come home and your cat greets you by rubbing his body and his face against your legs and ankles. Why is he doing this? There are several reasons. One of them is that he is happy to see you and expresses it this way. Another has to do with marking. By rubbing its body against you the cat recognizes you as part of its social group. The cat claims you as another member, which must share the same smell. Therfore, the cat transmits its smell to you through this gesture.

Strange cat behaviors: A black cat rubbing against a woman's legs to socialize.

2. Sleeping on the Sink

Many cat owners confess that cats often sleep in bathroom sinks without being able to find an explanation. However, there is no mystery. First, the toilet is a confined place, and some cats associate it with a quite and safe burrow, which they like so much.

Another reason has to do with temperature and it is very logical in summer and in tropical climates. When the heat is more intense, is there a cooler place than the ceramic in the sink? According to cats, no.

Strange cat behaviors: A red Tabby cat sitting in a bathroom sink

3. Attacks of Madness

It comes as a surprise to many cat owners when their beloved pets start running and jumping around the house with no apparent reason. This is more common at night and in young felines, but adult cats can also jump and rage during the day. Why do they do it? There are two main reasons.

The first of these is that your cat has a lot of accumulated energy and is bored. A sudden change in behavior such as a few crazy jumps help the cat to entertain himself a bit. When this is the case, consider offering your cat various means of entertainment so that he can release his energy.

On the other hand, this behavior also occurs as a response to an infestation by external parasites. These parasites bite the skin to feed, which causes itching. When the itch is unbearable or affects an area that is difficult to reach to scratch, it is common for cat to jump hectically. It also occurs when the cat suffers from Feline hyperesthesia syndrome (FHS), a disorder that only a veterinarian can diagnose and treat.

Strange cat behaviors: Two Tabby cats jumping in the air, one of them catches a toy

4. Biting Fabric

Some cats enjoy biting and sucking on cloth garments, especially when they are made of wool. This is usually common in cats that have been weaned prematurely. This behavior can become compulsive in some felines, while others only manifest it in stressful situations.

In the same way, other cats tend to chew and even eat all kinds of objects, such as plastic or cardboard. The so-called Pica syndrome manifests itself when the cat has nutritional deficiencies or behavioral problems that lead to feline chronic anxiety. Such cases require urgent veterinary intervention.

A Tabby cat with green eyes biting on wool wrapped object

5. Lick Human Hair

Many cats enjoy giving their caretakers’ hair a good lick, either when they are laying beside them or when they climb on their shoulders. You would probably like the reason behind this behavior. Cats only groom other cats. When they lick your hair is only because they consider you a reference figure or part of their family group.

Felines do this because, when they are young, their mother is in charge of grooming them and keeping them clean. It is a way to reinforce the bond they have with the members of their close circle. In short, it’s one of the ways cats demonstrate their affection.

A cat sitting on a man's shoulders and licking his hair

6. Nibble on Plants

Many cat owners complain that their furry friends nibble and destroy their plants. However, the cat never does this out of the desire to harm plants and annoy you. Although they are carnivores, they have the need to eat food of plant origin in a timely manner. In nature, they satisfy this need when they eat the stomach of their prey, where they can find half-digested plant remains.

Domestic cats, however, may try to make up for the lack of herbivorous food by nibbling on your plants. However, we must be aware that some plants are toxic for cats. Therefore, we advise you to make sure that the ones you have at home are non-toxic for your feline companion.

A Tabby cat sitting in a green leafy plant.

7. Scratching the Ground Outsie the Sandbox

If you’ve ever caught your cat scratching the ground outside his litter box instead of covering his feces, he’s trying to tell you something. Cats are very picky about cleaning their litter box and also with the materials that you use as a substrate. So it is possible they do not like the texture of the litter sand you are using. When this happens, the cat substitutes the behavior of covering its stool, something that is completely instinctive, by scraping the surrounding surface.

A gray Tabby cat walking out of a litter box

8. Biting Itself

If you notice that your cat bites its back, its tail or any other part of its body repeatedly, you should be alert. This behavior can be a sign that it has external parasites, so you should check its coat for these annoying insects.

This behavior is also present in stressed cats that even hurt themselves, as they bite themselves compulsively. In either case, you should consult your veterinarian if your cat exhibiting such behaviors.

A gray Tabby cat biting and licking his forelimb pads

9. Dragging Their Bottoms

It is not normal for cats to drag their bottoms on the ground, so when they do it means that something happens. Although it may seem curious, the truth is that it is an unequivocal symptom that something is not going well. It is possible that feces are stuck to their fur, something that can happen in long-haired cats or those who suffer from diarrhea.

However, it can also occur when the cat has feline intestinal parasites or an inflammation of the anal glands. In both cases, a visit to the vet is mandatory.

10. Drinking From the Tap

When it comes to water consumption, all cats appear to be different. Some drink from their container without problems. Other cats prefer metal troughs, while some hardly drink water no matter what you do. There are also cats that enjoy water from anywhere, except from the bowl that you have arranged for them. Among the latter are cats that enjoy drinking from the faucet or tap.

The reasons are not strange. Plastic water containers for pets can change the taste of water. Even if the effect is so subtle that the human tongue can hardly detect it, cats will refuse to drink such water. Second, you may forget to change the water daily, and the cat will refuse to drink if it is stagnant.

Apart from this, many cats are struck by running water, as it gives them the feeling that it is cooler. If this is the case with your cat and you want him to stop drinking from the sink faucet, get a cat fountain.

A tri-color Tabby cat drinking water from a tap

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