Naturally, cats climb, they don’t fear height or seem bothered by the precarious situations they put themselves in on top of a tree or a roof, which are the usual places where we see cats getting stuck, it seems like they’re just having some sort of a break.
You ever noticed the old cartoons, every time the fireman gets the kitty out of the fire she just runs away on the top of the tree. Well, that’s not real! Fireman departments respond only to human, the cats climbing part is true though!
Also, you certainly hear a lot of stories about the high-rise syndrome and wonder why cats climb anyway, ignoring all the dangers they could go through from such heights. Well, that’s what we’re going to figure out!
Why cats climbing:
Cats climb all the time, it’s in their genes, and it’s instinctive that they find comfort in high places. Understanding why modern cats like high places requires looking in their history and find out the reason. According to scientists one of their ancestors called” Proailurus” was found among the fossils of the Oligocene period. Proailurus means “early cat”. He was a carnivore that lived for almost 20 million years ago. He’s around 2 feet longer than the actual cat and weighed almost 20 pounds.
Proailurus, the cute cat ancestor, had a body with characteristics that made him an excellent climber; he had a long tail, and retractile claws, the long tail gave him balance while climbing, when the claws are there to latch trees, branches, predators and preys. According to “New Dinosaurs”, Proailurus was able to stalker his preys from three branches away or even from higher positions, which explains why modern cats like to perch on really high locations to easily detect the birds, mice and another tiny animal that represent their primary food source in the wilderness.
How do I give my cat a vertical space to climb?
You certainly noticed that your cats climb on you every time. Don’t worry! It’s the way to look up for food in the wilderness; they climb trees and start looking for their prey.
Keeping your cat stimulated requires from you to provide your kid kitty with the same elements that you find in its wild natural environment inside your home, and “The Cat Behaviourist” blog gives a lot of alternatives on how to offer your cat a vertical space he or she can climb in. It also contains DIYs about indoor cat trees, cat shelves, indoor cat climbing tower and other home projects that can give your kitty a space to climb in.
There’s a variety of DIYs for cats climbing equipment. You can have some wood pieces covered with carpets arranged up, or even empty boxed with holes inside them where they can run in and out of, or if you have a high window shelf find something to use so that Fluffy could be able to jump up onto it. Also, you can find cat climbers of all sizes and all levels of complexity at retail stores if you don’t want to make it yourself.
When you provide your kitty with the proper cat climbing equipment, your cat not only burns energy but also satisfies his instincts of a natural climber, also one of the benefits cats receive from climbing is that climbing increases a cat’s territory. That says he will spare your curtains and maybe spares you the middle night noise and the cat jumps triggered by boredom too.
Indoor cats live a safer and healthier life, but it doesn’t mean that it takes away all the beautiful things they could have had in the free nature, Even though chronic cat boredom is real and it can appear through many symptoms like over-grooming or becoming over-weight due to the lack of movement, with the right equipment, tools and vertical climbing spaces to please and stimulate your kitty mentally and physically, your kitty will be just fine and not missing out on much things outside.
Keeping cats off counters and tables:
Cat climb everywhere and don’t spare any place, and certainly not your tables or your counters. The only thing you can do is put something that makes cats feel uncomfortable when putting the paws in it. The “Anti Cruelty Society” recommended a pacific restrain, for instance, putting double-sided tape on the things you don’t want your kitty to jump on, as; they hate the way it feels when they touch it with their paws, or you can put something that moves and with a sticky texture that makes the cats repulse it and never think of climbing on it ever again.
On the other hand, The Animal Humane Society suggested to adopt an unrewarding attitude towards your cat whenever they jump on the counter; if your cat loves attention, don’t speak to him when he climbs up the counter, once he’ll figure that his trick doesn’t get him attention he will stop it by himself.
According to the same source, don’t punish your cat, they ignore how to associate punishment to a certain act, if you’re using the counter for preparing food, you’d better take Fluffy to another room while you do it. And finally, don’t forget to encourage and treat them when they do the correct cat behaviors and avoid the turbulent ones.
Cats climb everywhere and will climb anyway, so it’s best that you provide them with decent vertical cat space, such as shelves or steps made particularly for cat climbing, for a safe climbing for cats and also to satisfy their climbing need and keep your table, counters, and curtains safe.