9 Gross Things Cats Do That Actually Make Complete Sense
As I showered my cat's face with kisses, my old roommate once said, "it takes a healthy dose of denial to love an outdoor cat." You know, because they kill and eat birds and mice, which are just a few of the gross things cats do. While most cats are fastidious bathers, they also walk in the litter box and then prance across the table where you eat your meals. (And, they don't always have the courtesy to clean their paws first.) If you're a cat parent, you probably aren't too ruffled by your cat's gross habits in the same way non-cat people are. Because, you've got that whole denial thing down like a boss.
"Many moons ago, when we first became cat parents, I had grand dreams of not allowing them on the counters or table. That lasted all of about 52 seconds. I know some people have trained their cats to stay off these surfaces (or think they have), but I’m apparently much too lazy to do this," Amber Carlton wrote for Catster. "I used to at least make a half-hearted attempt but when my husband started sharing his meals at the table with our cat Ripley, I just gave up." Honestly? Same. If you're a cat hater you've probably already clicked away in horror. But my fellow feline-loving friends, you're totally going to relate to these gross things that cats do — that actually make a TON of sense.
1. Cats Want To Share Their Kills With You
My neighborhood in Los Angeles is flush with stray cats. One of the strays, whom I named Frank Sinatra for his piercing blue eyes, used to come into our yard every morning to kill and eat his breakfast, aka an unsuspecting bird. If you have an indoor/outdoor cat, your feline friend has probably brought you a gift in the form of a decapitated bird or mouse. While Fluffy is just trying to share the bounty with you, it's also pretty gross if eating birds and mice isn't your jam. It can be especially traumatizing when you forget about this and kiss Fluffy's face a few hours later. Denial.
2. Cats Traipse Through Their Own Toilets
If you haven't had the time or patience to train your kitty to use the human toilet, they're probably doing their business in a litter box. And, no matter how much you scoop the poop, there's no getting around the fact that your cat walks in its own pee and poop on the regular. Once again, this is where that healthy dose of denial comes in handy.
3. Cats Want To Show You Their Butts
Have you ever wondered why your four-legged feline friend insists on putting its butt in your face? While this is super gross, it turns out kitty is just trying to say hello. "The body language of politely opening themselves up to a sniff-figuratively uncovering their face so we see and recognize the 'real kitty' is a huge compliment granted between trusting friends," Certified Animal Behavior Consultant Amy Shojai wrote for The Spruce. "The cat butt sniff offer is a back-handed feline compliment."
4. Cats Rub Their Butts On Your Stuff
Perhaps you've witnessed your cat scooting its butt across the floor. The horror! While this is super gross to humans, The Nest explained that kitty is not trying to soil your belongings. It turns out this behavior means your cat is trying to relieve pressure or irritation on its backside, which can be from constipation, allergies, or a host of other things.
5. Some Cats Spray Their Urine
There's nothing stronger than the smell of cat urine. Aside from being beyond gross, cat pee is difficult to get rid of. If you have an un-neutered male cat, he could be spraying his urine to mark his territory. Other cats might decline to use the litter box because they have a urinary tract infection and associate peeing in the box with pain. If your cat is spraying or peeing anywhere besides the litter box, take kitty to the vet ASAP.
6. Some Cats Like Licking Earwax
All cats have their idiosyncrasies, though some are stranger, and more disgusting, than others. One user of a UK pet forum noted that their cat is obsessed with human earwax to the point that the cat insists on licking the insides of its humans' ears. Hey, whatever floats your boat because, that's not gross at all.
7. Cats Eat Their Own Vomit
OK, we can't blame this gross thing on cats entirely because a lot of animals eat their own vomit. According to the website Petcha, the jury is still out on why cats eat their own vomit. "Perhaps pre- and post-vomit meals smell and taste pretty similar and your cat’s just not bothered by it. And maybe the extra warmth from being inside your cat makes a regurgitated meal even more appealing than it was in its original state. Or maybe you have a particularly thoughtful cat that doesn’t want to inconvenience you with a gross cleanup job."
8. Cats Lick Each Other's Butts
With two dogs and two cats, there's a lot of communal butt licking going on between the animals in my house. But, why do they do this gross thing? According to Cat Wisdom 101, butt sniffing and licking is how cats greet each other. Basically, it's like a handshake for animals that don't have opposable thumbs. Seriously, I've never been so happy to have thumbs in my life.
9. Cats Enjoy A Drink From The Toilet
If you're a pet parent, you're probably pretty accustomed to shutting the lid to your toilet. But, hey, sometimes we all forget. Cats and dogs love a good drink from the toilet, which they likely view as their own special giant water bowl. If you cat is sipping from the commode, you might want to check kitty's water bowl to make sure it's not empty. Because, gross.
While the things cats do might seem icky to their humans, there's likely a lot of things humans do that cats find perplexing. I guess everything is subjective.