I often refer to Darby as the ninja cat. Silently and stealthy with black fur that lets him blend with any shadow, he is a master at appearing without warning, frequently popping up underfoot and tripping me when I’m walking.
“Today I was almost successful in an attempt to assassinate one of my tormentors by weaving around his feet as he was walking. I must try this again tomorrow, but at the top of the stairs.”
— “The Cat’s Diary”
While “The Cat’s Diary” always makes me laugh, I don’t really believe Darby is trying to injure or kill me. But I’m far from the only one who lives with a pet tripping hazard. According to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), over 86,000 Americans are hurt in falls associated with cat or dogs each year.
Reasons for Tripping
Cats are territorial animals that rub against things to mark them with their scent, according to Feline Forever. By rubbing against your legs, your cat is staking a claim on you.
Cat behavior expert Pam Johnson-Bennett, star of the television show “Psycho Kitty,” offers another explanation. She considers tripping a form of attention seeking behavior.
Both opinions seem to suggest that tripping is a sign of affection, demonstrating how much your cat wants to be near you.
Things you can do
If you have a cat that tends to trip you, pay attention to where you walk. In places like a staircase where a fall might be especially dangerous, consider carrying your cat. Never kick your cat, as this could cause serious injury.
While it can be frustrating to deal with, tripping isn’t vindictive or mean. It’s the result of normal cat behaviors. To prevent accidents or injuries, mind your step and be aware of where your cat is.
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