Here's Why Your Curious Cat Is Always Swatting Things

Next to teenagers, cats are the most mercurial companions. Sometimes they are sweet and cuddly wanting nothing but scratches and love. Other times they attack everything in sight, assaulting feathers, batting at sweater sleeves, or swatting coasters and cups and even house plants right off the counter. While the behavior can be entertaining, occasionally owners who have just watched their pet push a beloved vase off a shelf may be wondering why, why, good grief, why? Well, according to Daily Paws, curiosity may not only kill the cat, but it can cost you a houseplant or vase or two.

Cat Playing with Flower
Cat Playing with Flower

Getty Images

As the adage implies, cats are curious creatures and it's that curiosity that drives them to push things around, just to see if they can do it. That innate curiosity isn't the only thing driving your cat to send your wedding china crashing to the floor, though. Per the Daily Paws, there are a few main reasons cats like testing gravity. First, your cat just might be feeling frisky. If they don't have enough stimulation in the form of toys like catnip mice or feather chasers, they may find their own fun or try to get your attention to play with them. Unfortunately that may include pushing your possessions off shelves or counters. Similarly, cats have natural hunting and investigative instincts, which leads to testing things out with all their senses, including those quick little cat paws knocking things over. As Daily Paws notes, "Since cats are more active and see exceptionally well at night, you may find items 'mysteriously' on the floor when you wake up in the morning."

Luckily this is easily solved by a quick trip to the pet store to pick up some interactive cat toys or with creative DIY solutions like leaving open boxes, balling up socks, or leaving enticing balls of wrapping paper around for cats to bat. The more opportunities for safe entertainment the fewer reasons for mischief.

Another reason your cat may be knocking things over is a bit more understandable-it's in their way. According to Daily Paws, climbing stuff is in a cat's DNA, so if there aren't many options for them to climb high and survey their domain, they are going to make use of what they have available to them, specifically your counters, desks, and shelves. If your favorite mug or cherished framed photo of your sorority sisters is in the cat's way, well, they are going to remove the obstacle.