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Why Do Cats Put Issues in Their Water Bowl? 9 Doable Causes

Dr. Paola Cuevas Photo

Reviewed & Truth-Checked By

Dr. Paola Cuevas

Vet, MVZ

The knowledge is present and up-to-date in accordance with the newest veterinarian analysis.

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It’s widespread for cats to drop toys and different issues into their water bowls, and whereas we don’t know precisely why every cat does it, there are a number of theories. Let’s take a look at potential causes that cats put objects of their water bowl.


The 9 Doable Causes Why Cats Put Issues in Their Water Bowl

1. Gathering Instincts

Apart from searching, cats are naturally pushed to gather and collect. This intuition is most evident if you watch a mom cat transferring her kittens round or when she returns wandering kittens to the “nest.”

When a cat drowns their toys of their water bowl, it could be merely “gathering” up its toys for safekeeping.

American shorthair cat eating
Picture Credit score: Apicha Bas, Shutterstock

2. Hiding Their Prey

Cats are pushed by their searching intuition. That is what drives how they play with and consider their toys. Your cat might even see their toys as prey, in order that they put them of their water bowl. Within the wild, cats deliver their prey again to their nesting spot to guard it for protected protecting from different predators. Regardless of your cat’s domestication, this intuition remains to be current. Since they don’t have a nest to cover prey in, they put it of their water bowl.

3. Washing Off the Scent of Their Prey

Along with hiding their prey from different predators, cats additionally wish to disguise or wash off their scent. Due to this fact, they conceal it within the water bowl. This washes off the “prey” scent, saving the cat’s meal from different animals.

Whereas their toys aren’t truly a meal for home cats, they could nonetheless insist on drowning their catch within the bowl.

bengal cat eating
Picture Credit score: Photo_Olivia, Shutterstock

4. Instructing You or Different Cats Methods to Hunt

Your cat could also be dropping toys within the water bowl to show different cats to hunt (you probably have a couple of) or to show you ways. It’s the identical manner {that a} mom cat would educate their kittens. They’re dropping the prey in a protected place to show you easy methods to hunt for your self.

5. Leaving You a Current

Cats are sensible animals and know who feeds and waters them each day. When cats wish to present their affection, they carry their house owners presents, typically within the type of prey. You could have identified an out of doors cat that loved to deliver useless mice again to its proprietor. Equally, your cat is leaving their toys so that you can present their appreciation.

cat hunting mice in the wild
Picture Credit score: Kathryn19, Pixabay

6. Enjoying

Generally there is no such thing as a different rationalization to your cat’s habits past the truth that they’re having enjoyable doing it. Many cats are fascinated with water and like to paw, splash, or fish objects out of it. It could be that your kitty likes the sport of dropping toys within the water bowl and pushing them round.

7. Displaying Discovered Conduct

In case your cat will get consideration if you discover toys within the water bowl, they are going to drop them in there once more. It’s a realized habits. They know that it will get your consideration, in order that they drown extra toys if you’re round.

long haired cat eating food from a cat bowl
Picture Credit score: Seattle Cat Picture, Shutterstock

8. Being Bored

Cats are naturally curious creatures that may get bored simply. They might discover fascinating issues to do with their extra power. Drowning toys of their water bowl could also be a method that your cat alleviates their boredom.

9. Doing It for Comfort

It’s potential that your cat’s toys land within the water bowl just because that’s the spot the place they must drop them. Cats carry their toys round of their mouth. In the event that they go to get a drink, they must put the toy down, and it simply lands within the bowl.

maine coon cat pawing its water bowl
Picture Credit score: Pickless, Shutterstock

Can You Cease Your Cat From Dropping Issues within the Water Bowl?

More often than not, there is no such thing as a motive that it’s essential to cease your cat from placing issues of their water bowl. It’s cute and humorous and no hurt comes from it. There’s additionally the truth that your cat might be appearing out their pure instincts when placing toys within the bowl, making it practically not possible to cease.

Additionally, you’ll be able to’t restrict your cat’s entry to water simply to cease the habits. There are well being penalties to this, and your cat will merely discover one other place to drop their toys, maybe someplace much less handy to scrub up than the water bowl.

That mentioned, in case your cat is a persistent toy drowner, there are some things that you are able to do.

  • Purchase water-safe toys: In case your cat drops all their toys within the water bowl, there are particular toys that you could be not need them to have. Toys that break aside in water will contaminate the water or be rendered ineffective.
  • Be certain your cat isn’t consuming random gadgets: Most cat house owners discover toys of their pet’s water bowl. In case you discover different home items, be certain that your cat isn’t consuming them. This may be harmful, although fortunately, it’s uncommon. Your cat could also be making toys out of issues like scraps of paper or mud bunnies, and that’s high quality. Simply be sure that they’re enjoying with the gadgets and never consuming them.
a cat playing with toys
Picture Credit score: winni-design, Shutterstock



Dropping toys into the water bowl is pretty widespread cat habits. Hopefully, this checklist has given you an concept as to why your cat is doing this, however bear in mind that you could be by no means know the precise motive. Whereas your cat could also be appearing out their pure hunter/gatherer instincts, there’s additionally the nice risk that your cat drowns their toys for a similar motive that they exhibit different odd cat behaviors: as a result of they really feel prefer it! Fortunately, there aren’t too many detrimental penalties that may come from this, aside from occasional further cleanup.

Featured Picture Credit score: Vera_Chan, Shutterstock

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