Most cat owners will attest that cats have an obvious obsession with shoes, whether it’s snuffing them, sleeping on or near them, or batting at them, for a variety of reasons. Not to mention the fact that some people will take your shoes from near the front door and put them somewhere else.
Cats enjoy laying, chewing, attacking, and playing with shoes, slippers, socks, and any other type of footwear! It’s a bond that I’m convinced dates back to the time when cats and shoes coexisted.
There are a few theories as to why they are so fond of shoes….
They love your smell
Cats have a 14-fold greater sense of smell than humans. They probably rely on this sense the most of all their senses. Because you are a person, your scent is the most familiar, and consequently the most reassuring, that they experience in their daily lives.
That isn’t to suggest that your shoes aren’t filthy. Each individual has their own distinct scent, which is sometimes unnoticed by our less developed human nose. The Jacobson’s organ in cats’ palates allows them to detect odors. They take smelling your shoes very seriously.
Apart from your pheromones clinging to your shoes from wearing them all day, you drag your shoes through a variety of surfaces and places, each with its own distinct odors. This is similar to a floral arrangement for cats. This is also how they find out where you’ve been since you left the residence.
Cats are drawn to random objects that are accessible
In most cases, shoes are left on the floor. When they don’t want to jump or climb, cats prefer to stroll all over things that are on their level. It’s also possible that your shoes are one of the few items in the room to which they can just stroll.
Shoes with laces and buckles, as well as other embellishments, attract the cat’s attention. They are attracted to those items because they remind them of the toys they enjoy playing with.
Cats often enjoy laying down on warm garments that have just come out of the dryer, laptop computers that their owner is using, or even scraps of paper on a table.
There isn’t always a good explanation why cats pick the objects they choose. Especially if the posture in which they are laying down on this object appears to be uncomfortable. But, well, it’s what they’re looking for. They’d relocate if they didn’t want to be bent like a pretzel on top of the color printer. Cats may be a little odd at times.
It’s likely that they prefer to sleep on the shoes since the floor is much cooler than the shoes.
The sense of smell is most likely the most essential of a cat’s five senses. It has fourteen times the strength of a human’s and twice the number of olfactory receptors in their nasal tissue. They also have a specialized organ called a Jacobson’s organ (also known as a vemeronasal organ) placed on the roof of the mouth that most humans lack. This organ effectively allows cats to taste the odors and pheromones in the air, providing them with a wealth of information about the animals and humans around them. Cats are inherently curious and will study novel smells, but they will also seek out the scents of old objects that make them feel comfortable and secure.
Cats produce and exude their own distinct smell pheromones in glands all over their bodies, including their cheeks. When your cat rubs up against you or an item (also known as bunting), they’re leaving their mark to indicate that they’ve been there before. This belongs in my space and gives me a sense of security.’ Cats are drawn to items that smell like them and the people they care about. Sleeping on your shoes is simply your cat’s way of expressing how happy they are to be in your company, how relaxed they are in your presence, and how much they adore you!
But it’s possible that your cat isn’t only resting or grooming your shoes to show you how much they care. Clothing, shoes, and blankets that smell like you can provide comfort to your cat in stressful times. Sleeping on your shoes might be a technique for your cat to self-soothe while you are gone during the day. It might even be the reason why your cat doesn’t just sit on your shoes where you put them, but instead moves them to another spot. As a means of keeping a piece of you close by, your cat may carry your shoe to a favorite resting spot and use it as a security blanket. Your cat may suckle on your shoes or socks if they were bottle-fed. This is due to the fact that cats that are weaned from their mothers too soon develop an oral fixation and nibble or suckle on items that smell like their owners. This is another form of self-soothing, and leaving shoes on the floor for easy access provides a convenient outlet for it.
Shoes are usually kept on the floor at an ideal height for cats and other pets. One of the reasons why most cats become fond of shoes is because of their handy location. Because the shoe leather resembles the cat’s favorite straps, the cat can’t resist chewing, cuddling, and playing with it. Some cats are simply playful, and they will play with everything that comes their way.
They like tight spaces
If your cat slams its head into your shoes, it’s probably just for fun. Cats are drawn to boxes and small areas for the same reason. It meets their natural denning impulses, allowing them to hide from predators in the wild.
You’ll also see your cat pouncing, throwing, and attacking your shoes in a fun manner. Your cat most likely connected your shoes with having a good time. They will also do a deep smell of your shoes as a source of amusement. Your cat may also be sniffing and then opening its mouth. This is known as the Flehmen reaction, and it is not a sneer.
The shoes are warm and comfy
For cats, a freshly removed shoe is warm and quite comfortable. When the plane takes off, some cats will go directly to their owners. Your cat finds the shoes comfortable and safe, despite the scent and small area.
Watson, my kitty, chose to sleep in one of my work boots to his $50 bed. We eventually got him to stop, but the enticing and concealing of the shoes took a long time.
The shoes are placed on your cat’s spot
Finally, you probably stepped on your cat’s favorite hangout area. As a result, the kitten detects the aroma in your shoes and correlates it with the security of remaining in that location.
In addition, shoes are frequently left on the floor, allowing cats easy access. Aside from that, leather shoes resemble the toy belts that cats use to entertain themselves. This is why some cats may begin to mess with the shoe in a fun manner.
Cats enjoy lying on and cuddling with your shoes because they enjoy smelling your aroma. After being outside all day, they also want to designate your shoes as their territory. They also enjoy lying on top of other items. If you don’t want your cat’s fur or drool on your shoes, make sure they’re hidden somewhere your cat can’t get to them.