A few weeks back my two teenage daughters ran into the kitchen asking if we had a cucumber. Not really a question a dad wants to hear from his daughters but not really knowing what this was all about. They told me they wanted to “Scare Poe with a cucumber.” Poe is one of our cats who thinks he’s the “king” around the house and a frequent target of one of my daughters due to his always being in the area no matter whats happening in the house.He’s also the Alpha of the two. (Tin foil the one exception). My immediate reaction was one of, “Not going to happen. You aren’t scaring the cat with a cucumber.” There was lots of teenage angst and huffing and storming back upstairs.
I had no idea where this came from. Random tearing downstairs with phones in hand wanting to get a cucumber to scare the cat was pretty foreign to me. Turns out, viral videos abound on Youtube and IG with shitty (yes I swore) cat owners terrorizing their cats with vegetables were all the rage. My kids, being kids, wanted to do the same to see their cat go viral virtually having a heart attack on screen.
Cat Cucumber Reasoning
Admittedly, cat’s have alarming and photogenic reactions to getting spooked. They are quick athletic animals capable of amazing feats of anti gravity and speed. They are arguable natures best hunters and killing machines however they are not without predators themselves. Even though our domestic cats are just that, domestic, their natural instincts to survive are not bred out of them. They are in fact animals acutely aware nature is eat or be eaten. A cucumber can have a very similar profile to a very dangerous animal on this earth, that being a snake. Cats dislike snakes. Snakes will bite cats. Big snakes will eat cats. You get my drift I’m sure. A lot of us humans don’t like snakes and are probably scared of them. We’d probably show great athletic ability if a snake snuck up behind us as well.
Cat versus Cucumber Bad
Why is it bad you ask? You want your cat to feel safe in it’s home. You want it to feel safe while it’s sleeping and you want it to feel safe if it’s eating. If your cat is comfortable in your home, it’s less likely to be aggressive towards you. It’s less likely to hide in a certain area of the house away from you. It’s much less likely to urinate outside it’s litter box. Pushing an item behind your cat when it is comfortable and feeling safe, which is very much when it’s either sleeping or eating, will turn your cat completely anxious.
Your cat will no longer feel safe eating. It will no long feel safe sleeping. It will now be looking to keep predators at bay by spraying or peeing in your house to mark it’s territory. That one moment of “haha look at my cat jump out of it’s skin because it’s just a cucumber” will scar your cat’s confidence for a long time.
Cucumber = Predator
Yes that’s right. You just fooled your cat into thinking a predator came up behind it while it was comfortable and was going to kill it. You made your cat fear for it’s life. It’s now fearing for it’s life in it’s home. I call this mental torture or terrorizing your cat. We all hate people who abuse animals (Most of us who are sane anyways). You simply just terrorized your cat to the point it thought it might die. It will now always need to look over it’s shoulder and be fearful of its surroundings. I call that excellent cat ownership. (Smell the sarcasm?)
The moral of the story is be a responsible cat owner. Don’t let your kids terrorize your animals because they likely don’t really understand what they are doing. A lot of people online complain about bad cat behavior but are probably doing things like this in their home to create an environment where their cat doesn’t feel safe. It probably feels like it needs to mark territory or always be on guard. A cat or pet shouldn’t feel like their home is at risk for predators or they’ll likely be constantly trying to either find them or protect you and them from them. I cringe every time I hear about the cat versus cucumber videos just because those cats at that moment they leap into the air thought they were at risk of death. It’s really not that funny.
You want to make funny videos of your cat? Who doesn’t? Find some toys they like to play with and film them. They will eventually leap into the air and and do crazy stuff at play, instead of being fearful and becoming distant from you due to feeling unsafe. Some great toy options below.
We encourage you to read out Best Scratching Posts on Amazon post to keep your kitty active and happy. You can find it here: