Like alphabet magnets, cats seem to be attracted to the fridge. For them, the refrigerator is the penthouse suite. It’s often the highest point in the house and kitties love a room with a view.
From their cool cat condo, they can see everything that happens in the kitchen. Not only is it often a private spot where they can be out of reach from young children or dogs who might chase them, they also receive the mental stimulation of watching their world from above.
This instinct is how their ancestors stayed safe from predators and hunted for food without being detected. The refrigerator is a relatively low-risk zone, but this love for heights can get cats into quite a bit of trouble.
For example, a cat may love to lounge by a second or third storey window. However, if the window is open to let in a breeze or the screen is loose, it only takes a moment of distraction for a typically balanced kitty to focus too hard on prey or fall asleep and take a tumble.
Cats are very good at hiding pain. Even if a cat lands right-side-up or falls from a height of only a few feet, he or she can still sustain injuries like damaged tendons, limbs, ribs, jaws and teeth from hitting the ground. This is especially a risk for cat who enjoy access to apartment balconies.
Additionally, outdoor cats can easily get stuck in trees. It may seem like they simply refuse to come down, but the curvature of cats’ claws makes it simple to climb up but very difficult to go back the other way.
It is very enriching for a cat to enjoy heights, but pet parents have to help by providing secured areas to scale like shelves, bookcases and cat trees. If these items require claws to climb, don’t forget to include an easy way for the cat to get down!
By challenging your cat both physically and mentally, these perches can be a great way to spend quality time together. Your cat can enjoy his or her entertainment, whether he or she prefers to watch Bird TV by the window or the cooking channel from the “top floor” of the refrigerator!
Dr. I. Wonder is here to answer your questions regarding your furry family members. If you have a question, email it to us at danielle@NeighbourhoodPetClinic.com. Our team at Neighbourhood Pet Clinic will tap into their collective experience to answer your various questions.