Our three cats enjoy following us to the bathroom and organizing ‘joint action’ every morning. Most people find it highly uncomfortable, but our furry friends obviously refuse to understand why. Whether this is their inability to respect their owners’ privacy or something else, that is the question.
Animal behaviorists offer a few theories why cats enjoy going to the toilet with their owners and pooping in their company. They are curious, look for attention or seek protection while performing this essential daily activity; sometimes, they want to speed owners up for reasons like hunger or boredom.
In this article, you will discover why your cat tends to poop when you poop.
Expert Theories on Why Your Cat Poops When You Poop
As with many things, cats are pretty weird when it comes to pooping. Most animals enjoy their privacy and don't want anyone to bother them while doing such a crucial activity.
On the other hand, your cat may be absolutely convinced that you shouldn't have the same privilege. Therefore, they may unblinkingly stare at you while spending time in the toilet.
There is a third option, as well. It seems that some cats truly believe that pooping when their owners poop is an ultimate pleasure. However, is that really so?
After talking with more experienced veterinarians and a few animal behaviorists, we have agreed on one thing. Cats do nothing by accident and always have a strong reason for a particular type of behavior.
Most professionals believe that there are at least four theories why your kitty chooses to poop when you poop. Let's take a closer look at the subject.
The First Theory – Protection
The first and most likely theory why your cat chooses to poop while you poop is that it considers you a protector.
Even though felines are fierce predators, they are smart enough to understand that their size makes them vulnerable. Believe it or not, that fear of becoming prey hasn't been lost in domesticated cats, even in modern times.
It probably sounds weird to you, particularly if your kitty has been a part of your household from its birth, but it has kept all its ancient instincts. Therefore, it is still cautious about going to the toilet and feels more comfortable when you are near.
Since it considers you someone who provides safety and protection, it will be relaxed and willing to share such an intimate activity with you. Your cat doesn't care much about your wishes to spend some time on your own – it's safety is more important.
There is one more thing. Your cat knows that being caught in such a delicate situation can be dangerous in the wild. Your cat believes you are part of their colony, and they want to protect you as well. Therefore, they will watch you to ensure that your activity won't attract predators and put yourself in danger.
Since predators are a primary reason for the instinct to bury its feces, it probably wants to check whether you do the same. It can be dangerous to attract attention! From a cat's point of view, your duty is to keep it safe, and it won't allow you anything less than that.
The best thing you can do is put your cat's litter box in a safe corner of your bathroom and get used to performing your morning ritual in company. Remember that the chosen place needs to be easily accessible, hidden from “prying eyes”, and properly positioned so the kitty can escape when needed.
The Second Theory – Curiosity
As a cat owner, you probably know how curious your kitty is. As soon as you step inside the mysterious room and close the door, it wants nothing more than to find out what interesting things may be going on there.
Dr. Kathryn Primm, the vet and author of Tennessee Tails: Pets and Their People, told the great truth to Woman's World. She agreed that vulnerability could explain the cat's tendency to share the bathroom with you. However, she is also convinced that the real reason for it is ‘in its DNA.' Simply said, your kitty wants what it can't have. That is all.
Cats are incredibly territorial animals and want to know what is going on in their surroundings. By entering this particular room every morning and denying your cat access, you make it desirable, elevate its value, and your kitty unquestionably needs to get inside.
The Third Theory – Routine
Cats are animals of habit, because an established routine helps them feel safe and keeps their stress levels low. Therefore, they won't tolerate missing a step in the chain of daily habits.
In some cases, cat owners cause weird behavior like ‘gathering for poop' in cats through their daily routine. For instance, you probably have the same morning ritual of waking up, brushing your teeth, using the toilet, and showering. If you do that before offering food to your cat, it will understand that it needs to wait for its turn.
As a result, your furry friend may come to the bathroom to try to speed you up. It may stare at you while taking a shower or decide to poop next to you while you poop to show that it shouldn't be an activity that lasts too long.
From its point of view, the sooner you finish, the sooner it will get food. Another option is that it considers pooping together as its own routine to follow.
The Fourth Theory – Attention
Since your cat craves attention, especially when you are not in the mood for it, it is logical to expect it to enjoy joining you in the bathroom.
Don't even doubt that this furry menace is aware of your incapability of moving while sitting on the toilet. So, it will take advantage of this situation to come and ask for cuddling and petting.
In some cases, your kitty can decide to share that precious moment with you and start using the litter box at the same time as you use the toilet. The point is that you are predictable there, and it exactly knows what to expect.
In such a case, your kitty is relaxed and feels safe, making that part of the day a perfect moment for pooping. Believe it or not, it makes perfect sense to the cat, and it will probably stick to that habit.
Cats hate being in front of a closed door
Cats often hate being out of the spotlight from their closest companion. Being left in front of the closed door is an absolute nightmare for it!
Some vets believe that cats are also jealous and consider access to the bathroom as a privilege they deserve. So, if you prevent your furry baby from getting something it wants, you will likely face whining, meowing, and scratching at the door.
You are Trapped Inside
Likely, the bathroom is fascinating to your cat because of your presence there. Once you sit on the toilet seat, you can't go anywhere for a while. Therefore, it can be a crucial time for your pet to curl to your lap.
Besides, this room smells like you and lovely little things you use daily. Your kitty probably considers these moments valuable for bonding under its terms.
Many experts and animal behaviorists believe that cats show their love by following you to the bathroom, but you should be aware that they sometimes do that because of boredom. Deal with the probability that you are only a source of current entertainment.
Finally, a universal answer applies to everything these animals do when you run out of other explanations. They can! The tendency to perversely whine about getting something without real need is typical cat behavior.
That is why it is not a bad strategy to freely let your cat enter the bathroom while you are inside. Ignore the cat while you do your business. Chances are it will get bored of it soon, leaving you with your privacy. Enjoy the little victories!
Why Does Your Cat Enjoy Spending Time in the Bathroom?
The bathroom smells
People usually don't enjoy odors in the bathroom, but your cat adores their intensity. Unlike humans, who divide smells into pleasant and awful, cats have different parameters. For them, each scent carries some helpful information, and yours will provide comfort and safety for them.
When our Sophio escaped from the broken carrier after the car accident, we eventually found him thanks to dirty, smelly shirts and the litter other cats used. He was afraid and ignored our calls but reacted to a familiar and comforting scent.
Remember that the wet towels, your robe, and even floor mats smell like you, so it is a sufficient reason for your kitty to follow you there. Not to mention that it will enjoy some other odors that you usually hate.
The bathroom offers water
My Clementine hates even the thought of bathing, but she always drinks water directly from the tap. It is not unusual behavior because most cats are highly suspicious when it comes to water.
As a result, kitties will refuse to drink dirty or stagnant water. For them, the bathroom is the place with an inexhaustible source of clean fluid essential for life.
Therefore, you can expect your kitty to come with you to the bathroom and start drinking after you have washed your hands. Cat logic says that something you consider safe will also be good enough for them.
This can be a slippery slope, as a cat that prefers to drink from the tap will rather die of dehydration than take water from a bowl. Consider getting a cat water fountain.
It is not rare to spot your furry friend licking water drops after you have taken a shower. I believe that cats find that activity fun unless they suffer from obsessive-compulsive disorder. Even though they usually hate bathing, water actually fascinates them in many possible ways.
The bathroom is full of cat toys
Maybe you don't think so, but your cat considers the bathroom a place full of attractive toys, like soft towels, toilet paper, and comfy bathmats. All these things are fun and exist there only to make your cat happy and entertained.
For instance, my family needs to keep toilet paper in the towel cabinet since our Josephine enjoys nibbling it and using it as an inexhaustible source of entertainment.
The bathroom has comfortable cat beds
Many homeowners are shocked by their pet's habit of using a washbasin or tub as a bed. Your notion of luxury and your cat's perception are irreconcilably different.
The best option is to give up costly and comfy pillows and let your kitty enjoy its unusual bed while you use the bathroom. Your presence and weird place to take a nap is a win-win combination for your pet.
The bathroom is a warm place
I know this sounds weird since cats adore warm places, but they often look for cool smooth surfaces to lie down comfortably. They actually heat the site quickly thanks to their body temperatures, transforming a cold washbasin into a perfectly cozy place for taking a nap.
Plus, the bathroom is the warmest space in the house, especially while you take a shower, so it is understandable that your cat tends to spend time with you there. If you ask this cute furry creature, your scent with warm water is the ultimate pleasure.
We know that cats enjoy sharing the bathroom with their owners and even poop when their people poop. However, there are many factors that lead to this and no one, including vets and animal behaviorists, has a definitive conclusion. Your kitty wants to spend time with you, so it's best to simply let it be. Ignore their behavior if it bothers you, and their behavior will improve over time. Or, simply enjoy their company in the bathroom, knowing they are likely seeking out your attention and hope to provide some comfort to you in return.