Cat Behaviour – Understanding Their Weird Antics

cat standing on two legs

Cats are curious little creatures with cute and weird cat behaviour, and it seems like we will never entirely understand them. They’re always up to weird antics that continues to confuse us. More often than not, we can’t even tell if they like us!

They’re strange little mysteries and we end up loving them for their quirks. However, the fact is that those seemingly crazy cat behaviours are actually not that crazy or random!

Behaviourist and evolutionists have found quite a few rational explanations for some weird things that cats do on a daily basis. Let’s unravel the ambiguities together!

Rubbing Their Head on You

Its not just for affection

cat behaviour  - rubbing against things

Isn’t it adorable when cats rub their heads against your face or your legs? We love it because we’ve come to understand that this is their way of showing affection to their owners – but there is more to it.

When your kitty rubs and nuzzles its head against you, he/she is practicing a common cat behaviour called bunting.

This is the process where a cat’s head releases pheromones that helps to mark their territory. Your cat isn’t only showing that they love you; they’re expressing pride that they own you!

Paw Kneading

A mother’s recognition

kitten being fed milk

We can’t get enough of these little weirdos kneading! When cats press their paws into your skin and knead back and forth as if massaging, this is actually a display of loving cat behaviour.

In evolutionary terms, this is your kitty subconsciously remembering their nursing days – when they press their paws on their mother’s mammary glands for better milk production.

When cats do this as adults, they’re either happy or are trying to relieve stress by practicing this comforting behaviour. Either way, we guess you can feel flattered; you remind them of their mommy!

If I Fits, I Sits

Watch me squeeze anywhere!

Photo of Gray and White Tabby Kitten Sitting on Sofa

Kitties are notorious for essentially being fluid… seriously, how do they fit into every kind of small space?! Put a box out of literally any size and chances are your kitty won’t be able to resist it.

kitten hiding in sofa
Cats love cozy places

Even if your cat has a gigantic royal bed, they would rather curl up in boxes or sinks because this makes them feel safe and secure.

cat behaviour - sleeping in pot
and they love secret hiding spots!

They also have a natural wild instinct to ambush, so they enjoy sitting in what they think are secret spaces and observing their surroundings from a safe distance.

Bringing You ‘Gifts’

Even if you find it gross!

cat behaviour - hunting for gifts

Many of us have experienced the horror of dead rodents, birds and insects in our homes. Often, kitties hunt these little animals and then bring them home.

As gross as the gift is and while it may make you think your cat is crazy or has an aggression problem, it’s merely an evolutionary cat behaviour.

cat with dead mouse
A cat presenting you with a gift!

They’re are actually thanking you for taking care of them or appreciating you as a member of their family or social group.

If this happens, Congratulations! Your kitty has accepted you as one of their own! On a more serious note, some cat owners might are put off by this act of affection.

cat with bell sleeping
A simple bell will help curb your cat’s hunting success for ‘Presents’!

If you would like to curb this bad cat behaviour, simply add a bell onto your cat’s collar. This will make it difficult for them to successfully hunt.

Literally Never Letting You Work!

Unless they get all the attention first!

Cat next to computer

It happens when you are busy trying to focus on something. Your cat will plop down on your belongings at these exact moments for usually two reasons: they want attention because you’re clearly focused on something else and they want to leave their scent on your belongings to mark their territory.

Sticking Their Butt in Your Face

It means trust – I’m not Twerking!

Weirded out by your cat presenting their behind to you? Don’t worry, even if you find it gross, it is actually good news as a cat owner. This strange cat behaviour is actually a classic feline backhanded compliment!

When your kitty presents her tail to your face and sticks her bottom near your face, that’s the ultimate sign that they feel secure around you and are presenting the gracious opportunity for you to sniff them– as animals do to each other.

It really is quite like a hug or a kiss by a cat. Fortunately, you don’t have to sniff them and a scratch will suffice!

Dashing In The Dark

Midnight Zoomies!

cat behaviour - running

We’re all used to our cats lazing around during the day, but at night, just when you’re done with the day and finally deep asleep in your comfortable bed… they wreak havoc by dashing around! No, it’s not because they hate you and don’t want you to rest.

Cat In The Dark
I can’t sleep… I guess I’ll randomly sprint around and scare people…

Behaviourists suggest that cats have these enormous amounts of energy in the middle of the night because they are essentially nocturnal animals. This means that in the wild, they sleep during the day and stay awake and ready to hunt at night. These evolutionary instincts are carried on in them even if they have always been house pets.

Try feeding your kitty before bed. If they have a full stomach, their hunting instincts are likely to be low during the night. If this doesn’t work, try leaving out food puzzles to keep them engaged while you catch up on some sleep.

Laying in Contorted Positions

Flexible, comfortable living

cat behaviour - contortion

Is your phone’s gallery full of photos of your cat sleeping or laying down in unbelievably twisted positions? Don’t worry, it’s normal. Cats are incredibly flexible and them sleeping in weird poses is just them getting comfortable.

Think of a cat sleeping in a weird inside-out arch as the equivalent of you comfortably sleeping with your legs sprawled open. They’re just relaxed, and they’re comfortable being themselves around you. It’s all good.

Rejecting the Litter

Aka: The world is my toilet

litter box with scoop

Your kitty knows how to use the litter and has been doing do successfully for years –until one day they decides that they wants to urinate or defecate outside the litter box. Sometimes it’s just on the sides of the box.

When this happens, it is important that you get to the root of this unusual behaviour. This usually occurs due to common cat medical problems like UTIs, bladder stones, constipation, or other pain or discomfort. It may also be due to behavioural causes like stress due to new or changing environmental factors, changed littler or litter box, or wanting attention for other reasons.

If the behaviour is consistent, it is important not to reprimand them and best to consult a professional to make sure your kitty isn’t in any pain or discomfort.

Teeth Chattering

Excitement Overload

cat behaviour - chattering

That awkward chattering sound that cats make with their teeth sometimes? Thats them are telling you they’re frustrated because they’re unable to do something they want to do.

Animals, Cat, Bird, Parrot, Cage, Caught, Security
Cats chatter their teeth in excitement – not cold

You’ll often notice the chattering while they watch birds, because they unfortunately can’t pounce at them as they please. It may also happen if a toy or favourite food is taken away.

If your cat is chattering and you don’t know why, it is best to distract them with a toy or keep them engaged with puzzles and scratchers so that they can release all that excess energy somewhere after all!

Knocking Stuff Off

I’m seeing what happens

Cat on Table

This is our favourite! Those moment when your kitty looks you dead in the eye before slowly knocking off that vase off the kitchen counter? We promise they’re not trying to aggravate you, even though it looks exactly like that.

cat on printer bored
I’m easily bored, entertain me….

As it turns out, cats are really just curious and easily bored. Knocking things off surfaces is just entertaining for them. They love to experiment and find out what happens!

Cat, Toys, Play, Domestic Cat, Apartment Cat
Cats start trouble when bored, keep them entertained!

To curb this behaviour, it is best to get them stimulating toys to keep their curiosity satiated.

You should also just give in to the feline lord and stop placing expensive or breakable items on high surfaces. Let’s face it, the kitty now owns you and your home!