You open the blinds to let the sunshine in because the day is just getting started and you need that vitamin D! However, your pet has other things on her mind when she decides to clean your window. Why are cats licking windows after all?
First, you’d think that your little furry friend is going to spend an awesome day bird watching or looking t all the neighborhood cats. Soon after, you realize she had a different plan all along.
Instead of basking in the sun as she usually does, your cat starts showing weird interest and licking the windows! You call her name for her to stop but she doesn’t pay any attention to anything you’re saying!
If this event totally knocked you off your feet, trust me, you’re not the only one! How come cats enjoy licking the windows? When I first saw this behavior in my feline, I honestly thought that there was something wrong with her.
Thankfully, it’s nothing like that. Most of the time, our furry friends will have a perfectly good reason why they’re licking our windows. I know what you’re thinking but your cat didn’t want to clean it for sure.
Is it normal to see cats licking windows?
While it can be a little bizarre, licking windows typically isn’t a major red flag for cats. However, if your pet is just losing her mind over your window, it might cause some trouble.
Especially if you’re using a particular cleaner that contains a lot of chemicals or your window is freezing cold. Then I suggest you start worrying.
There’s nothing wrong with your pet flicking her tongue out at the glass from time to time. However, this also might be one of the compulsive behaviors your cat does. So you might want to monitor her closely.
Most pet owners start to clean their windows more often when they notice this strange behavior. I’m the first one to polish them because I can’t stand looking at the stains my cats make
But more importantly, I can’t stand watching my feline in danger. So, should you worry about your cat ingesting window cleaners? Can it be dangerous?
Most of the time, window cleaners are safe and the risk shouldn’t really be that high. Unless your cat starts licking these products directly off the window, as soon as you spray them.
But in most cases, you’re spraying the window and wiping it down. This will remove most of the cleaning solution from the window before your pet even gets in touch with it.
When you spot your cats licking windows, it’s a good idea to avoid cleaning products or at least make sure your pets don’t immediately reach for the windows after you’ve cleaned them. Try using some clean cloth and hot water; it does magic to the windows and doesn’t contain any chemicals!
Why do cats lick windows?
There are a couple of reasons why cats like licking windows. Feline behavior can sometimes surprise us, but this actually might be very logical.
It’s no wonder that everything cats do has some purpose because they’re smart little creatures. But you just can’t seem to pinpoint why they like to lick windows.
The thing is that most windows are made from glass but it’s not that uncommon to come across plastic windows, as well. It’s not a deal-breaker for your cat because she’ll probably want to lick both of them.
Felines will definitely lick plastic windows for all the same reasons, just like the glass ones. However, there may be a couple of additional things that can possibly motivate such behavior.
Some plastic can contain animal fat. This just might be something that lures your feline in and makes her lick the windows.
It may also contain corn starch which some cats may appreciate. It’s not that your pet is crazy about it or anything. I’d rather say it has to do with her curiosity and exploring her surroundings.
Last but not least, plastic may mirror pheromones that our cats discover to be really interesting. However, this still isn’t clarified. Some cats will respond in an unexpected way to these pheromone smells and licking could be a common reaction to it.
If you want to find out more about your cats’ desire to lick windows, then you should definitely keep on reading.
1. Water source
If it’s the winter season, you might’ve heated the house up. You don’t like being cold and neither does your furbaby, even with all the fur.
You both sit on the window sill and watch as the snow is painting the outdoors a white color. You’re both warm but shiver at the thought of the cold breeze outside.
The warm air within your now heated home comes into contact with the cool glass when the temperature outside drops, leaving moisture on the window. This process is also known as condensation.
My cats will happily lick up all of the small droplets from the windows because it’s both fun and hydrating. But why would our cats prefer licking a few small droplets of water instead of drinking tap water from their bowl?
If you notice your pet waiting for these to form on the window pane, and avoiding her water bowl, this might be her instincts kicking in. Standing water is more likely to be home to parasites and pathogens that could possibly harm our cats.
Although the water indoors might be fresh as you take care of the hygiene and make sure it stays clean all the time, the instinct is still present.
Therefore, your pet is likely more drawn to sources of running water and refusing to take a look at her own. Even though the water on our windows doesn’t flow like a freshwater stream, it’s still a fantastic source that isn’t still.
I know, they have to make things more complicated all the time. At least you don’t have to pay big bucks for those water fountains!
2. Seeking attention
It’s really no wonder why humans are so head over heels for these little furry babies. Your cat probably noticed you pay more attention to her when she’s off doing something she shouldn’t be.
For instance, she probably already realized that she gains your attention when she licks those droplets off of the windows. She knows that when she does it, you’ll be right at her side, even if you’re scolding her and telling her no.
Therefore, it’s possible that your smart little pet is using this strategy to make it all about herself once more.
I’m not really sure that felines think like this: “Hmm. My human seems to not pay me enough attention today. What should I do to make her come over? The meowing doesn’t work so she must be pretty busy. I need something that will work. Maybe I should try licking the windows?”
It’s probably more something along the lines: “She’s busy again. I can’t deal with all this lack of attention. But I’m not really sure how can I steal the spotlight again. I wonder what it was I did yesterday to attract her attention. If only I could remember… Oh, look at that! Water coming out from the windows!”
So, your cats will keep licking windows because they saw it worked. It’s like an accidental discovery.
Felines are pretty clever, so it only takes them a couple of tries to grasp things. Once your pet sees you coming over whenever she’s licking the windows, she’ll likely figure it out. “She likes when I do this. She makes that weird smiling face and wants to hang out with me. I think I’m going to clean these windows for some more today!”
3. Curiosity at its finest
We both know that our furry companions don’t really have a care in the world. They only care when they’re going to be fed and cuddled again. Therefore, they don’t have really much left to do except explore their surroundings.
Felines are very inquisitive creatures. You know that saying, right? Curiosity killed the cat. I think it’s pretty self-explanatory and tells you just to what extent these animals are ready to go out of boredom.
But are your cats licking windows out of pure curiosity? Well, it’s possible and it doesn’t surprise me at all.
The sense of taste is one of the strongest feline senses next to smell and touch. Your pet probably touched it beforehand because you can see the pawprints all over your window!
However, it was soon time to do some tasting. Cats will lick a lot of things even if they’re not food or water. They use this strategy to get to know their environment better.
With their tongues, they can feel the texture, taste the surface, and even find out more information about other pets in the household. Maybe another cat has recently left her scent on the window and now your pet picked up on it.
I know my furry friend will literally lick everything and anything, including me. She will also lick me and bite me from time to time so the window licking isn’t really anything unexpected. At this point, I’m pretty sure she only does this to steal my attention.
Are your cats licking windows right next to your working desk? Hmm, why would they do that if they’re not looking for attention?
4. Yearning for the outdoors
Felines were domesticated a long time ago. Since then, they like to share their spot with us on the couch. They’re our furry babies and we don’t want to risk anything happening to them.
The world can be a scary and dangerous place. Therefore, most owners tend to keep their pets by their side, locked away in the safety of their house. I’m sensing a new Tangled story here…
As a result, their only interaction with the exterior world is through a window. That is unless you take her out for walks. I’m not saying your furry baby is depressed because she’s not allowed to go outside. But she’ll definitely show some interest in the outside world, especially if the view overlooks the backyard.
Maybe the tree in your yard is home to many species, such as birds and squirrels. This makes the window seem like a big TV screen for your feline! If you ever had the chance to watch your cat observing the outdoors, you may have noticed her body quivering and teeth chattering with excitement.
Besides that, your pet might even try to lick the windows as well. Perhaps she saw that one bird and made it her target. If she does this, don’t laugh at her, she’s just very ambitious and follows her hunting instincts!
5. Weird fondness for texture
This will probably sound a bit weird, but it’s the cats we’re talking about. Therefore, you can never let anything surprise you. The thing is that cats might lick the windows because they like the feeling on their tongue.
This behavior can seem strange but it’s perfectly normal for your cat to be fond of a certain type of texture. It’s just like you love your silky, cashmere sweater, your pet loves the feeling of your window. I know this doesn’t make it sound any better but it’s true.
Also, if it’s a hot summer day and you don’t have your AC on, your pet might be struggling with the heat. It’s never easy for cats to carry that double-coated fur. Therefore, your pet might opt for licking the windows if they’re a bit colder.
Perhaps you and your furry little buddy live a happy life somewhere on the coast by the sea. Then there’s a high chance your windows will have a little bit of salt on them.
Moist, clammy days can lead to saltwater clinging to your windows. I’m not talking about a pile of salt on your windows – just a simple, fine layer on the glass.
However, not all cats like the salty flavor, so you won’t find all of them sharing the free salt lick. Just like my furry buddies – they grew up together but they’re two worlds apart, especially when it comes to taste.
Whether we like it or not, bugs are a normal part of our world. You may consider them to be disgusting, but your pet doesn’t agree with you. If you ask her, she probably finds them delicious!
Hunting is a big part of the animal world. Carnivores stalk and hunt their prey in the wild in order to survive. Even though your pet isn’t really exposed to any wilderness, she still has a natural urge to catch something.
If you have a pet that sometimes visits the outdoors, you may have gotten a couple of gifts from her. Usually, felines will catch smaller prey such as rodents, birds, bugs, or even leaves. I know it’s not much of a catch but it’s the thought that counts!
So even if your cat doesn’t have access to the outside, she might still be interested in hunting some bugs down. You should really be thankful if you have a pet that keeps your bug population down. Unfortunately, I wasn’t so lucky with my cats.
They couldn’t care less that we have a problem with these insects. So I have to do all the work around the house, and I hate bugs. But if your feline is obsessed with these flying monsters unlike my cats, she might opt for licking your windows in order to catch them.
Insects can oftentimes get stuck in your blinds and your cat will try to get to them. So who’s really at fault when she tears down your favorite curtain?
8. Stress and anxiety
Each cat is an individual which means that every pet will exhibit different behaviors and patterns. When we’re talking about stress, it influences cats in different ways.
For instance, one of my felines does great under pressure and will usually be back to her old self in no time. On the other hand, my other cat will completely lose it. He’ll be sulking for days, hiding in the corners of the house, and refusing to eat.
Although it seems like an unusual way to get rid of anxiety, licking the windows or the window screens can be a self-calming method for some cats. The peril of this is often that what begins as a way to alleviate oneself can turn into compulsive behavior, like over-the-top grooming.
Therefore, it’s not easy to make your cat stop doing this. We usually tend to focus on the action of licking the windows, but the problem might be rooted deeper in our cats. Anything and everything can make our cats uncomfortable, so it’s best to dive right in and find out the cause of this behavior.
Read more about feline behavior: Why Does My Cat Watch Me Shower? Don’t Pawnic Yet!