It is amazing! Every time I have to go, my cat follows me to the bathroom. Whether I need to take a bath, a shower or need to pay a visit to the toilet, they always come. Why does my cat follow me to the bathroom?!
I Am Not Alone On This
Surprisingly enough I am not the only one. This phenomenon or cat habit is reported by many other cat lovers. The questions and blogs are everywhere including YouTube videos that report the same.
Is this some new type of plot between cats that they have a special meeting going on when they are in the smallest and usually the coldest room of the house? Or is there something else at play here?
Cold Or Warm?
Some other people have reported that they think it has to do with the nice cold floors that most bathroom floors have. The cold tiles are comfortable to some cats, because of some health related issue. I however disagree, because cats generally prefer it nice and warm and not stone-cold!
In fact, we got floor heating in our bathroom (as many other Norwegian houses have). Not a chance to get a cold floor there, as it is nice and warm to my feet and their paws. They actually prefer the bathroom in our house for that reason alone. But they don’t usually want to lie on the bathroom floor, they prefer a towel that is on the bathroom floor – haha!
Feeling Left Out?
Cats are a bit like toddlers in that perspective. They just don’t want to be left alone and want to feel included. If you go to the bathroom, they need to be there as well. “If we cannot get to you, we will try to get to you. So if you closed that door, we will try to open it.” It is followed up by heavy scratching noises and paws that try to get underneath the door.
Sometimes I am “unlucky” in that they manage to open the door. They walk in and are all happy letting that known by a shake of the top of their tail and usually a prrr (tirring) or a meow.
Other times that meow or prr is of the more “annoyed” type, where they wondered why we didn’t leave the door open for them. Why did they want the door opened? That’s the next topic.
Cat Territory Scan
Cats have a schedule on what part of their territory needs further inspection. They also make each section of their territory “their own” by using their fangs, head or whole body and even by the scratches with their paws.
This “I own this“-tagging is produced by a pheromone gland in various area’s of the body. Even their urine contains a certain amount of this pheromone. As funny as it may sound, they are not after owning every bit of your house (although it seems that way) but more of a territorial way of saying “this is mine” to other cats (and maybe even other animals).
An opened bathroom means an opportunity to re-index this notorious area for their daily territory cycles. Perhaps there is a tasty mouse hiding somewhere? A nice place to take a nap? Some left-behind underwear to have some playtime with?
Door Kept Open?
When I am just in for a quick check on the bathroom or have a short break on the toilet (ahem – no further details), it is not so difficult to close the door again after letting said cat inside.
There are however times that my cats let themselves in while I am taking a bath. How unpleasant and rude! It isn’t only that they enter the room, but they usually go in for their quick territory scan and – LEAVE AGAIN WHILE THE DOOR IS NOW WIDE OPEN!
Not only am I somewhat indecent in public, but it is also getting seriously cold in the bathroom. Not the biggest problem in summer, but in winter it is really cold.
Dedicated “Me” time
There is also a good chance that your cat has figured that we are somewhat stuck in a certain position on the toilet, or in all undecentness after a bath or shower. We cannot simply run off after our business or we are stuck for quite a while.
Cats register when you are stuck for sometime somewhere. They register not just when you are visiting the bathroom, but also when you are sitting down for a cup of tea or work on your PC. They known we are stuck and will be available for a good while to give them extra much attention.
Whenever I go to the bathroom, Nusse follows us there and wants to sit on your lap, or get some water in the sink or tub. Kira is the big door-opener and actually manages to open the door even when its shut. Our bathroom door doesn’t shut entirely, but she just uses a paw and pulls the door open. Amazing stuff. Kira opens all sorts of door – even the kind with a handle that is closed properly.
Although the real reason why my cat follows me to the bathroom is unknown to us humans, we have figured a couple of possible options. First of all gets might like the temperature difference with other rooms, although I really disagree on that one. There had to be more.
Cats could just feel left out like a toddler with their mommy. Cats generally prefer to own your entire house and therefore every door needs to be open in the house, so that they can perform their territory scan each and every moment of the day.
In most cases however, this cat following ritual is because you are going to be stuck for quite some time in that place. The cats known this and they will want to make use of the opportunity to get some extra “Me” time.
So you can guess what my assignment to you will be now – haha!
Go to the bathroom and let your cat join you! But please, also share your experiences below!