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Why do cats prefer high places?

Have you ever noticed that your kitty loves to jump on top of the refrigerator? Or perhaps you’ve spent a good 20 minutes looking for your cat, only to see him or her peeking at you from atop your door? You’re not the only one, and it’s a quite natural behavior that your cat is exhibiting.

How are cats able to jump so high?

Cats are able to jump an astounding 6 times their length, which is more than enough for kitty to reach the top of your door in a single bound. Cats use a combination of their extremely flexible spinal column, powerful hind legs, low body weight, laser precise vision, and careful calculation that all contribute to one of the most graceful leaps in nature.

Why don’t cats like to be on the ground?

As both predator and prey, cats are instinctively aware that they are more vulnerable on the ground. The open ground makes them easy targets for larger land-based carnivores as well as birds of prey. When they aren’t on the hunt (or sunning themselves with their colony), cats will find hiding places in hard to access trees and enclosed spaces where they can easy ward off attacks.

How can you help your cat satisfy this natural instinct?

You can “catify” your home by providing access to more vertical territory. Providing tall cat trees with hiding boxes is a great way to start. You can also install cat shelves, which are essentially display shelves that you reserve for your feline friend only. If you really want to go the extra mile, you can custom order cat bridges and wall mounted play areas to give your kitty an endless amount of climbing space. The sky’s the limit!


Candace Elise Hoes is a pet sitter and blogger at Katie’s Kitty. She is a graduate of the MFA Writing Program at California College of the Arts.

photo by christels on pixabay

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