Last Updated on: November 22, 2023 by Crystal Uys

Cats perform a slew of behaviors that seem odd or unusual to us humans. One of those habits is dropping their toys in water. Sometimes it’s the water bowl, but some cats opt to drop their toys into the toilet, of all places. This is such a strange behavior, especially since many cats seem to hate water. Why would cats do this strange thing?

Nobody knows for sure why cats drop their toys into water, but some people believe it has to do with your cat’s innate prey drive. Here are some of the reasons that your cat could be dropping their toys into the toilet and other bodies of water in your home.


Predatory Instincts

Cats are apex predators, even when they’re contained within your home. They have strong predatory instincts that drive many of their behaviors, including play behaviors. When cats drop their toys into water, they may be attempting to wash the scent of the prey off of it, making it more difficult for other predators to detect it. They may also be attempting to hide their “prey” by nesting it into a bowl, and sometimes that bowl is the bowl of your open toilet.

Love for You

Cats are wonderful animals that show a great deal of appreciation and affection for their people. One of the ways that some cats show their love for their people is by bringing them gifts. While these gifts are sometimes dead insects and mice, they may also “gift” their toys to their people.

Affection aside, cats also bring prey, including their toys, to their people because they think that their people are bad hunters. If you aren’t bringing dead animals and toys to your cat, they may fear that you aren’t able to hunt and provide for yourself. To help teach you how to be a better hunter, your cat may bring their toys to you. Sometimes, they’ll drop their toys in front of you in odd places, including toilets, sinks, water bowls, and even drinking glasses.

cat on top of a toilet bowl
Image Credit: Olivia Lorot, Shutterstock

How to Prevent This Behavior

You may not be able to fully deter your cat from dropping their toys into water, but you can at least keep them from dropping their toys into the toilet. For obvious reasons, you don’t want to have to fish cat toys out of the toilet, nor do you want your cat playing with toys that have been soaking in toilet water. Get everyone in the household on board by either keeping the toilets or the bathroom doors closed when nobody is in the room to monitor things.


In Conclusion

Nobody truly knows why cats drop their toys into water, but it’s likely related to their strong hunting instincts. Some cats may choose the toilet as the place they drop off their toys, though, which is a behavior that you want to deter. Keep your cat out of the bathroom as much as possible and replace any toys that have spent time soaking in the toilet.


Featured Image Credit: Galina-Photo, Shutterstock

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