Smashed mugs, shattered glasses, cracked phones and broken ornaments. These are just some of the things that you will see littering the house of most cat owners.
If you own a cat yourself you have probably suffered the painful loss of at least a couple of items due to your cat’s calamitous tendency to knock your possessions off tables.
While the number of GIFs online showing cats knocking every item imaginable onto the floor indicates that many people find this behaviour endearing, there comes a point (which often corresponds with the moment your iPhone is knocked to the floor and the screen cracks into a thousand pieces) when you’ve had enough!
So Why Do Cats Like To Knock Things Off Tables?
There is no one reason for all cats as to why they love to knock things off tables. Different cats may choose to knock things off tables for different reasons, there are a variety of common reasons for this behaviour. Hopefully after you have read our explanations below you will be able to work out the reasons that your cat is doing it, after all you know your cat best!
Their Hunting Instincts
As we all know a cats primary instinct is to hunt however in many domestic cats, particularly indoor cats, this instinct is often repressed and discouraged. Consequently some cats may knock things off tables as a small way of expressing these instincts.
They Want Your Attention
Cats love getting attention from humans, be that scratches, strokes or treats. One easy way that your cat communicates with you and gets your attention is to knock something off a table right in front of you or to sit on the book or piece of paper you are working on!
The way in which you respond to your cat doing this can play a big part on whether or not your cat decides to regularly knock things off tables. Cats very quickly learn that by doing this they can get everyone to pay them attention, the best way to stop this behaviour is (as hard as this is) to either ignore them or stop them before they get the chance to do it.
They Are Exploring Their Environment
Cats have extremely sensitive paws which they use to interact with objects and get a better feel and understanding of their environment. Tapping, touching, hitting or even knocking things off a table helps them to better understand their environment and the objects in it.
Yep, some cats just knock your things off tables because they enjoy it! It’s a fun game and a great way to let out a bit of pent up energy.
Some cats that are frequently cooped up will find imaginative ways of letting off a little steam such as smashing all your things! If this is the case for your cat we recommend that you explore different ways of letting your cat burn off a bit of energy, you could do this by giving your cat some interesting interactive toys or you could even get them a cat running wheel! Either way 15-20 minutes of active play a day should (hopefully) put a stop to destructive playful behaviour.