Why Are Cats Afraid of Water?

Cats are composed animals, rarely given to emotional outbursts. Get a cat wet, however, and you are likely to witness a total abandonment of any semblance of composure, with the feline going from docile to a windmill of claws, teeth, and flying fur.

Why is my cat afraid of water? Have you ever seen a tiger swimming at the zoo? These and other wild cats are known to be excellent swimmers, which makes it seem even more strange that many domestic cats seem to hate getting wet. So whats the real deal when it comes to cats and water? Are they hydrophobic? Why dont they enjoy a good swim like many cats in the wild? Lets take a closer look to understand why

The latter helps explain why your cat may be curious enough to grab at a running stream of water coming from a faucet or dip their paw quickly into the sink or tub. Running water especially stimulates a cats audio and visual senses, as it makes interesting noises and motions two characteristics that are also common in their prey.

When it comes to cats and water, its a common assumption that all felines hate swimming. Some people might be shocked if they saw a cat voluntary splashing around in the bath, however you may be surprised to learn that not all cats hate water and some will try to jump in!

This type of cat has a body built for swimming with their long frames and rounded paws. Bengals are great swimmers too, and as they derive from Asian Leopard Cats, they still have their natural instinct to splash and play in water.

If your cat is long-haired and they start swimming, their coat may become too heavy and make staying afloat a struggle.

Fear vs. Fascination

If you’ve ever tried giving your cat a bath, you’ve probably witnessed their apparent distaste for being wet firsthand. But is it a phobia of water that makes cats fearful of bath time? From intently staring at a running faucet to dipping a paw into a full tub, your cat may have different behaviors that challenge the assumption that their feelings about water are only based in fear.While they might not enjoy getting wet, most cats are actuallyThe latter helps explain why your cat may be curious enough to grab at a running stream of water coming from a faucet or dip their paw quickly into the sink or tub. Running water especially stimulates a cat’s audio and visual senses, as it makes interesting

Observing Water vs. Getting Wet

So if domestic felines tend to exhibit this curiosity and wonder when it comes to water, why do they have such an aversion to getting wet? Here are a few possibilities and answers for the common question, Why is my cat afraid of water?

Cats are Creatures of Habit

Domestic cats love routine, and once a routine has been established, they’re not very tolerant or accepting of change. When you introduce a new or unfamiliar stimulus into your cat’s routine (like giving them a bath), you’re likely to be met with resistance. This is especially true with older cats and cats who have not been regularly exposed to water or baths.

Their Ancestors Weren’t Swimmers

The type of wild cat that domestic cats descended from are those of the Middle East, where the climate was arid and dry. There were very few bodies of water where the ancestors of your traditional house cat lived, which meant they didn’t have a need to learn how to swim.