Why Do Cats Roll in The Dirt?
As furparents who love to look out for our feline kids every minute of every day, I believe I can say that everyone can relate when I say that we’ve all wondered at least once about our cats suddenly dropping on their backs and simply rolls around – in the dirt!
Well, at first we would think that our cat is going nuts again – or you know, it’s probably a “cat thing” they are doing. There is some truth in that “cat thing”, this behavior in cats (and in most mammals too) is also known as dust bathing or sand bathing to some.
Rolling in the deep, oops, dirt!
There could be a lot of reasons as to why your cat seem to enjoy rolling in the dirt:
- To keep themselves healthy Is dirty the new healthy?
Well, your cat rolling in the dirt knows what it is doing. For us human being, dirt, may be well, dirty – full of germs and organisms that can become harmful for us. But for cats, somehow, rolling in the dirt helps them become healthier.
Imagine this: in human terms, we take probiotics like yoghurts in order to keep our stomach and guts healthy – rolling in the dirt is perhaps cats’ way of doing the same. By rolling around in the dirt, they get microorganisms caught up in their fur and the next time that they bathe themselves, they get to ingest these microorganisms. These microorganisms help them have good digestion. To be fair, this is not the only way that cats can get microorganisms in their stomach there is actually probiotics made for cats. If you are not comfortable with your cats rolling around in the dirt then you could visit your vet and ask for probiotics to give your cat.
- Feels good
Rolling in the dirt is a cat’s way to have a massage, and cool their coats off. It will certainly feel good for them! Do you ever notice that it is most likely for them to roll in dry dirt than a wet one? Well this is because they are trying to have a “refill” of the dirt supply. It sounds really weird, but cats get rid of the old layer of dirt then accumulates new ones that are far more cooler.
- Leaving their mark
Just like how they are scratching on furniture or peeing on your stuff, in order to leave off their scent and mark their territory, rolling in the dirt works the same magic for them as well. By rolling in the dirt, they are able to leave their pheromones in the area, indicating that it is now their own personal and individual territory. These pheromones are usually undetectable to humans but to other cats, it is a signal that says “this place is taken, go find another territory”.
- Did you just give your cat catnip?
Let us not overthink things shall we? Especially if you’ve given your cat catnip or cat toys infused with it. Your cat will really go wild and do unusual things under the influence of catnip. So there is really no cause for alarm when your cat rolls on the dirt – your cat is simply hyper and has tons of energy to consume!
- Scratching that itch
Perhaps there is that itch that your cat can’t get rid off through a petting session, a belly rub or scratching itself off of furniture – that is why they opt to simply roll on to the ground and in the dirt! Aside from getting rid of old layer of dirt and debris, your cat is also able to get rid of fleas and ticks that may also be causing the itch. This makes their coat healthier and lessens the fleas and ticks that they may have.
- Just because, it’s fun
Do you remember during your childhood days and how you usually play around with dried leaves of grass and roll down the hill along with it? Remember how fond those memories are? Well, if you can, imagine then that this is what your cat may be doing when they roll on to the dirt. It is just a fun activity to do!
There we go! Now we know that every time we see our cats rolling in the dirt, they are just trying to keep a healthy lifestyle! Some sort of maintenance behavior to look after themselves! Let’s keep our chill and let them do their thing!