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Why do cats love boxes?

 

Why do cats love boxes?

 

Cats love tiny, hardly accessible spaces. Unlike what they may seem, they do not choose such spaces just for fun. According to a Dutch veterinarian, your feline friend trying to fit into a carton box is mainly searching for some peace and safety. But is there more to it?

A scratching post or a box?

If a courier has just knocked on your door with your brand you scratching post, yet your cat definitely chose the box it was packed in – don’t worry. This is absolutely normal and acceptable in the feline world.

Kitties love pushing their bodies into carton boxes, bags, under wardrobes and armchairs because it helps them reduce the level of stress. This has been confirmed by Claudia M. Vinke, Doctor of Veterinary Medicine from the Utrecht University, who studied cats in a shelter for two weeks. She divided the animals into two groups, only one of which had unrestricted access to boxes. The results have shown that the pets that were able to hide away from the world were behaving more peacefully, they would more easily adapt to their new environment and be more willing to establish relationships with humans than the animals from the other group.

It turns out that this is not the only reason why cats choose carton boxes. Small, hidden spaces have several other important functions.

Hunting

Although our furry friends were domesticated a long time ago, they are still the descendants of carnivores hunting in the wild. Like their wild ancestors, domestic cats feel the need to hunt as well. Without the plants that could hide them from their prey, cats would choose whatever they find at their paw – cartons, bags or wardrobes, where they lie in wait to finally attack their toy mouse or their owner’s foot.

Isolation from problems

Cats are loners, and as such are not really capable of resolving conflict quickly. Therefore, in case of a misunderstanding with another family member, the pet would rather hide into a box to wait through the storm than try to reconcile.

Warmth

A cat’s average body temperature ranges from 30 to 38°C, which is significantly higher than an average indoor temperature at home – around 22°C. When a cat wants to keep warmer, they will choose a box where excessive loss of heat is minimized.

That’s why in a cat’s world, a cardboard box is much more than just packaging media to put goods in before shipping, or to store valuables when moving homes.

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