Awareness, Cat Food

Why Does My Cat Try To Bury Her Food?[Prevention Tips Included]

Why Does My Cat Try To Bury Her Food?

Your cat trying to bury or cover her food may surprise you in many different ways. This behavior, also known as caching, is a natural instinct that cats have inherited from their ancestors.

If you are one of the cat parents who are intrigued by their cat burying or covering her food, you are at the right place. This article explains all the possible reasons why your cat may be doing it.

Cat Try To Bury Her Food

Possible Reasons Your Cat is Burying Her Food

Saving it for Later

Cats’ wild instincts may drive them to save food for times when it might be scarce. By burying their food, they are engaging in a natural behavior to secure a meal for later, despite being domesticated and having a steady food source.

Protecting Food from Other Pets

In multi-pet households, a cat may try to bury her food to keep it away from other pets. This is a competitive instinct, ensuring they have enough to eat without their food being stolen by a housemate.

Hiding it From Predators or Others

Even though they’re safe inside, domestic cats retain the instinct to hide their food from predators or other animals to avoid attracting unwanted attention or competition for their meals.

Possible Reasons Your Cat is Burying Her Food

Keeping it for Kittens

A mother cat may bury food to come back to it when her kittens are in need. It’s a maternal instinct to ensure there is food available for her offspring, even if her kittens are already weaned or not present.

Not Enough Time to Eat

If a cat feels rushed or anxious during mealtime, they may attempt to bury their food to ‘save’ it for when they feel more secure and have more time to eat in peace.

Extra Food

Overfeeding can result in a cat trying to bury the excess food for later. It’s a sign that the cat recognizes the surplus and is acting on instinct to store the additional food.

Extra Food

Keeping Things Clean

Some cats have a strong instinct for cleanliness and may try to bury leftover food to keep their eating area tidy. This behavior resembles how they bury their waste in the litter box.

Tips to Stop your Cat from Burying her Food

  • Feed Smaller Amounts: Offer smaller portions more frequently so there’s less food left over to feel the need to bury.
  • Remove Leftovers Promptly: Clear away any uneaten food as soon as your cat walks away from her bowl to reduce the chance of this behavior.
  • Provide a Clean Eating Area: Ensure the feeding area is clean and free from odors that might make your cat want to cover her food.
  • Use Shallow Bowls: Sometimes cats try to bury their food if the sides of the bowl are too high. Use shallow dishes to see if it changes the behavior.
  • Distraction: Distract your cat after eating with a toy or playtime, diverting attention away from the food.

Frequently Asked Questions

Is burying food by cats unhealthy?

Burying food is not typically unhealthy for cats; it’s a natural behavior rooted in their instincts. However, if the behavior is excessive or accompanied by other changes in behavior or appetite, it could indicate an underlying issue that might require a vet’s attention.

Why does my cat paw at her food?

Cats may paw at their food for various reasons, such as trying to bury it out of instinct, expressing discontent with it, or engaging in playful behavior. It can also allow them to explore their food or express curiosity.

Can food burying show stress in cats?

Food burying can sometimes be a sign of stress in cats, especially if the behavior is new or has increased suddenly. It can indicate that the cat feels insecure or anxious about their environment or resources. If stress seems to be the cause, identifying and addressing the source of stress can help reduce this behavior.

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