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Why Does My Cat Scratch The Floor Before Drinking Water?

Cats are sneaky pets, so it is not always straightforward to interpret their distinctive actions. Similar to humans, felines will develop the habits that they might practice throughout the household. One of the strange habits is scratching the ground before drinking water. For some individuals, this behavior might act as a signal that there is something wrong with the water or food. To others, it is annoying and noisy behavior that should stop with immediate effect. Regardless of the cause, it is essential to understand why your purr friend develops this trait. Here is an exclusive look at why your cat paws the floor before drinking water.


1. She does not like the smell or taste of the water.

One of the potential explanations for this behavior is that the water smell or taste does not appeal to her. Felines have strong sniffing power and can sense the slightest smells. At one time, my purr friend tried scratching a hole after smelling her food which she did not find likable. This is the same case with the feline’s water bowl. If the water has a dreadful smell or taste, the feline might try scratching the ground to bury it. To curb the behavior, you may try to wash the bowl and refill it with clean water.

Why Does My Cat Scratch The Floor Before Drinking Water

2. Instinctive habit

Cats naturally exhibit various unexplainable behaviors. A typical example of instinctive behavior is how cats bury their droppings. In a bounded space such as a litter box, the feline tries to bury their dropping by scratching on the side of the litter box. The trait of scratching the flooring before drinking water is a similar instinct. Felines have an instinctive behavior to dig for water and food. When your feline gets ready to drink its water, it might have the instinct of trying to scratch the ground and dig the water up.

3. Curiosity

Cats are naturally curious animals. This means scratching the bowl base might be an intrusive gesture. Maybe, stuff on the ground caught the cat’s attention, and they are trying to get it by scratching the floor.

4. She is securing her boundary.

Another probable cause why cats paw the ground before drinking water is to mark their territory. This mainly occurs when another cat is trying to drink from its water bowl. She might also scratch the flooring before drinking water when the water bowl has been moved to a new place to remark its territory if the water bowl is new. This habit often goes away once the cat has marked the spot. But it is not; there are various ways of limiting the behavior.

Why Does My Cat Scratch The Floor Before Drinking Water

How to Stop Your Cat from Scratching the Floor?

If the behavior of your cat scratching the ground before drinking water is becoming annoying and destructive, you can try some tips to stop the trait. Some of the tips to try out include;

  • Use pheromone

To stop the destructive behavior of scratching around the water bowl area, you can spray a particular feline pheromone. The pheromone enables the kitten to relax so it will drink calmly and not dig through the floor. Artificial cat pheromones mimic the natural scents the felines leave on the surface. This way, your purring friend will not have to stay pawing and marking the floor.

  • Cover up

Another effective way to stop the cat from scratching is by covering the spot. You can use something like a small carpet so your kitten won’t damage the floor. It is recommendable to cover the area with a comfortable material to ensure she does not stop drinking water.


Bottom Line

Why does my cat scratch the floor before drinking water? It may be an instinctive behavior, an indication that the water is smelling or does not taste good, marking boundaries, or just an acquired habit. Often, this habit is harmless. You can try and place a mat underneath to prevent the flooring from getting damaged.

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