If it fits I sit
January 19, 2018 5:35 PM   Subscribe

Why Cats Love Boxes, According to Science! There's also a (captioned) video on Twitter, starring Artemis, a black cat, which are clearly the best cats.

Another explainer from Simon's Cat, and the obligatory Maru, the original YouTube box-fancier.
posted by AFABulous (26 comments total) 29 users marked this as a favorite
 
Hmm, I don't know, the arguments seems a bit thin. I think I'd need a lot more visual evidence on cats and boxes before I could draw any conclusions. If only there were someplace I could find such a thing....
posted by gusottertrout at 6:10 PM on January 19 [11 favorites]


“I would imagine it has something to do with predatory behavior and having a vantage point,” Cancellare tells Inverse. “It’s an ‘I can see you but you can’t see me’ sorta thing. Plus general weirdness.”

Spoiler alert: it’s general weirdness.
posted by Slarty Bartfast at 6:19 PM on January 19 [15 favorites]


There needs to be a scientific study on bag vs. box preference, because my three will take a paper bag over a box anytime.
posted by AFABulous at 6:24 PM on January 19 [9 favorites]


My very curious black cat confirms every word of this post.

(I can't wait to have enough room to build him a cardboard box castle.)
posted by kalimac at 7:15 PM on January 19 [1 favorite]


Finally Ares and Orion figured out how to jump in the box! I wonder why those other cats all pushed their boxes around?

My Millionaire doesn't care about boxes at all. She sniffs them if they're new but that's it. Her preferred spot is on my pillow or on our biggest, comfiest chair. Maybe she is just really confident?
posted by Emmy Rae at 7:48 PM on January 19 [2 favorites]


I do some light volunteering for a big cat rescue. They have lions and tigers and panthers and leopards. They do rehabilitation and whatnot, in the hopes that they can find a spot for the animals in a natural zoo or refuge. It's so tempting to treat the big cats like, well...big cats, which is why people like me are not allowed inside the habitats any more than visitors are. Because they're not pets, they're 1000 pound predators.

That said, I have been able to get some amazing pictures, including this one of a Big Kitty inna box. She loves boxes.
posted by SecretAgentSockpuppet at 7:56 PM on January 19 [51 favorites]


If I had a cat, I'd consider hiding treats in random locations, so kitty's natural exploration gets rewarded with num-nums. I figure that would just about make a cat's day.

I also figure it'd result in ants if the treats aren't found in a timely fashion, and also extra curiosity resulting in kitty finding weirder places to wedge into.
posted by JHarris at 8:03 PM on January 19 [4 favorites]


We try to hide treats for our kit but she's too stupid to find them if they're more than a few inches from her face.
posted by mai at 8:25 PM on January 19 [7 favorites]


I can't get within three feet of the drawer with the cat treats before being adorably mauled
posted by tivalasvegas at 8:28 PM on January 19 [9 favorites]


If I had a cat, I'd consider hiding treats in random locations, so kitty's natural exploration gets rewarded with num-nums.

Look for "interactive feeders" or "forage feeders". There are a variety of designs; this is one that's caught my eye recently.
posted by Lexica at 9:22 PM on January 19 [2 favorites]


If I had a cat, I'd consider hiding treats in random locations, so kitty's natural exploration gets rewarded with num-nums.

I did this with an ex's cat in order to get it to exercise.
posted by rhizome at 9:44 PM on January 19 [1 favorite]


I stand by my belief that cats like containers because they allow cats to relax and assume their natural liquid form.
posted by los pantalones del muerte at 1:21 AM on January 20 [22 favorites]


My cat is one that prefers paper bags because they crinkle when you get in them.
posted by tofu_crouton at 1:37 AM on January 20 [2 favorites]


My cat likes both bags and boxes. Unfortunately he also loves destroying cardboard. I thought about building him a castle so I started bringing empty copier paper boxes home from work. All I heard for 24 hours was the sound of him chewing pieces off and then spitting them out onto the floor. The living room looked like a hamster cage. That was the end of boxes.
posted by janepanic at 3:59 AM on January 20 [11 favorites]


I can't get within three feet of the drawer with the cat treats before being adorably mauled

Drawer, eh? We used to keep ours on top of the fridge. One day I noticed there were three similar-appearing packages up there: one of cat treats, one of gummy bears, and one of croutons. I guess what I’m saying is it pays to keep your wits about you when making a salad.
posted by ricochet biscuit at 7:01 AM on January 20 [8 favorites]


My cat Korben HATES boxes. He also will not get into bags, or even pet beds with raised sides. He'll rub on their edges with his face but if we want to remove something from Korben's existence, all we have to do is put it in a box. No need to even close the top, he won't even bat at things in boxes from the outside.

Because of his kitty IBS and our other piggy cat wanting to scarf all food forever, Korben has his own personal dining room, which is an IKEA coffee table with closed in sides and a chip-activated cat door. We went with clear acrylic on the two larger sides because I knew that he would refuse to go inside if it was closed in like a box, which is also why I couldn't use a plastic tub.

Korben isn't stupid by any means. He's very capable of problem solving and changing how he communicates depending on context, he's pretty playful when he wants to be and is a social and curious floofy dude. But boxes, man. I've never known a cat to have less interest in boxes. He's a scientific anomaly!
posted by Mizu at 7:42 AM on January 20 [8 favorites]


That lynx!
posted by lazuli at 9:02 AM on January 20


I want the title to be "If it fits, I sits" just for euphony's sake.

I also have a cat who will investigate a box and then wander off totally uninterested, so no boxes in our house. She will, however, curl up in outdoor plant boxes. Hmmm.
posted by MovableBookLady at 10:13 AM on January 20 [2 favorites]


Someone on metafilter once referred to the things cats like to sit on/in (eg, a sheet of paper in the middle of the floor) as lily pads.
posted by aniola at 10:37 AM on January 20 [4 favorites]


That said, I have been able to get some amazing pictures, including this one of a Big Kitty inna box. She loves boxes.

The look on her face is all regal elegance, like that box is a gilt throne. What a great photo!
posted by jacquilynne at 10:50 AM on January 20 [3 favorites]


Ah, that was an adorable cat-related article full of cute phot–
Hello! You've made it to the end of the article. Nice. Here's a related video you might like: "The Velvet Worm Is One Of The Fiercest Predators On Earth"
Aw hell nah! Ctrl-W Ctrl-W Ctrl-W Ctrl-W!!!!!!
posted by rum-soaked space hobo at 12:57 PM on January 20 [2 favorites]




My husband and I talk a lot about cat shaped holes, which is a space on the sofa between two people in which our cat believes he will fit. Sometimes cat shaped holes are only centimeters wide. Doesn't matter. Cat shaped, anyway.
posted by PhoBWanKenobi at 6:20 PM on January 20 [2 favorites]


All this talk about cats IN or ON things and nothing about things ON cats???
posted by oneswellfoop at 2:07 AM on January 21 [6 favorites]


oneswellfoop, ome of those cats are clearly plotting murder.
posted by AFABulous at 12:32 PM on January 21 [1 favorite]


All cats are plotting murder at all times. It's the default state of catitude.
posted by jacquilynne at 2:11 PM on January 21 [3 favorites]


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