Why They Love to Throw Things Off Shelves and Counters


You’d think being allowed to jump onto high surfaces would be enough to make a cat happy, but then she goes and bats everything off — papers, glass bowls, plates, you name it. Why do they do that?

Some animal behaviorists posit that one reason is that it gets your attention. Who doesn’t come running when a cat knocks over something breakable, or kicks a pile of tightly organized papers into a messy heap on the floor?

Another possibility is that by nudging objects off high places, a cat may be exercising her predatory drive — getting the upper paw. She’s also exploring different textures by touching and then pushing on them.

Finally, the activity may simply be fun. In the manner of a toddler dropping things from her high chair, a cat may like to see things go boom — or splat. They also get a rush from seeing objects move rapidly.

Your best bet: take away anything that you don’t want falling to the floor. You’re probably not going to win this one any other way.


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