I’m preparing to do some summer gardening, and I noticed that my cats love to lounge in some empty plant pots and boxes that I now have indoors. Why do cats seem to enjoy squeezing into tight places?
From the Editors of The Daily Cat
The sleek and flexible body of a cat can squeeze into very tight spaces, as owners sometimes learn when their felines push through partially opened doors or other tight spots. The shoulders of a cat can even bend and twist to enable them to fit into such spaces -- all adaptations for hunting elusive prey.
So the short answer to your question is “Because they can.” But that still doesn’t explain why cats are sometimes attracted to beds, containers and more that would seem to not be a very accommodating fit. Anitra Frazier and Norma Eckroate, authors of The Natural Cat: The Comprehensive Guide to Optimum Care, say that cats “feel safe” in tighter spaces.
There are a few possible reasons as to why snuggly fits make some cats feel comforted. One is that the reduced area helps cats to retain their body heat. Warmth itself is a comfort -- think of a hot cup of coffee in the morning -- so that conserved body heat can be an attraction. Another is that cats are very tactile animals. From their whiskers to their tails, they are very aware of what’s around them. Feeling the sides of a bed or container lets them know that they are safe all around.
I offer my own cats a variety of beds and containers to hang out in. Sometimes they enjoy spreading out, particularly on a hot summer’s day, while other times the tight squeeze is desired.