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Behavior

How to Satisfy Your Cat’s Desire to Hide

Your cat loves to find hiding spots to stow away in, so she may feel dismayed if your home doesn’t have many great spots on offer. Curious as to how you can provide a comfortable habitat and mental stimulation for your kitty? Here we explain how you can satisfy this natural feline urge.

“Ooh no one will find me in there!” Photo by Harsh Chauhan on Unsplash

Create safe hiding places around the home

Your cat will try to find places to hide around your house or yard, even if you don’t supply distinct hiding spots. Some of the places your cat may find could be dangerous, and you want to make sure you are doing everything you can to keep hazardous hiding spots from being appealing. That includes inside dryers and washers, around heating appliances, and inside the garage or under the hood of the car.

Your cat might not always be able to recognize the inherent danger that comes for hiding in the wrong spot, so make sure you are keeping the garage and your appliances closed and preventing the cat from hiding under heaters or around appliances that become hot. 

In order to prevent your cat from hiding in these spots, you also need to create some ideal hiding places for it.

Cat caves & cat trees

If you don’t mind spending a bit of money, there are some great items you can get that your cat will love as a hiding spot. A covered cat cave from feltcave.com is a great option for a cozy nap or a watch out spot where your feline friend will feel safe and secure – especially if you have a household with multiple pets. 

Cat caves are great for older cats who are sensitive to the cold too. Adopt a Pet explains that domestic cats “descended from desert-dwelling felines… who lived in caves!” Many archeologists believe domestic cats came from Egypt, so it’s likely that their tomb heritage also plays a role in why they like hiding in cozy, secret spaces. 

Cat trees are another great option that offer hiding places for your cat, with small cubby holes where your feline friend can sequester herself away and find a cozy snuggling spot.

Even a cat carrier can make for a decent hiding spot. Your cat may enjoy using the carrier as a means to get away from everything if you put the carrier in an appealing spot. Cats like to be up high and otherwise away from where everyone is walking. They like time to themselves and giving your cat some sort of hiding spot in a perch location or in a rarely used room is great for satisfying your cat’s natural instincts. 

Related: 25 Ways to Make Your Cat Happy

“Good thing I’m not afraid of heights…” Photo by Kazuky Akayashi on Unsplash

Or, you can use items you already have! 

If you don’t want to invest in a cat cave or cat tree, you might have a few things lying around the house that you can use as hiding places for your cat. Any cardboard boxes you aren’t using will make for perfect hiding spots. Your cat would love to curl up in those, especially if you put down a little bedding to make the box more appealing and comfortable. You can place these up on top of bookshelves, on the floor or in a cozy corner. It is always good to give your cat a variety of places to hide in so that the cat doesn’t get bored and start looking for more dangerous hiding spots. 

What else can you use to make impromptu hiding spots for the cat? You can use barrels and other containers, particularly on the outside of your house. Baskets, buckets and other items that provide some darkness and a sense of closed surroundings are great for your cat. Even if you don’t intentionally create hiding spots out of some of these items, your cat will. You can pay attention to which items your cat prefers and set some of them aside as hiding spots every now and then. 

Make hiding spots appealing

Your cat will naturally want to hide from time to time. Whether this is simply so that your cat can get alone time or so that she can feel like a hunter stalking prey just depends on your cat’s mood and temperament. If you have a hiding spot picked out for your cat that your furry friend isn’t too fond of using, you might want to try adding some essential oils to that spot to make it more attractive. Take some lavender, frankincense, or copaiba and spread some of it on the hiding spot to attract your cat. You could use catnip as well.

Alternatively, when you are trying to keep your cat away from certain hiding spots, you can use cinnamon, peppermint or orange. These essential oils should be unappealing to your cat and will help deter the cat from taking up hiding behind appliances, under the heater or in the garage.

Hiding is natural

Your cat may want to hide for any number of reasons, and it is nothing to be alarmed about. While cats can be quite social, they don’t always want to socialize, so the hiding spot gives them someplace to go that feels comfortable and natural to them. Make sure to accommodate your cat and ensure their natural urges are satisfied, and you’ll have one happy kitty on your hands. 

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