Funny videos of cats jumping high after seeing a cucumber are constantly circling around online. Although the videos look hilarious at first glance, they certainly do not do good to our feline friends. The result of frightening your cat with cucumbers may be detrimental to their health. Kitties that got petrified can injure themselves while flipping out or develop fears. Just one intense experience can affect your small friend’s mental life. If you, therefore, want to place a cucumber behind your cat to shoot a video, take it all into consideration. Is a short moment of fun worth your cat experiencing trauma?
Why are cats afraid of cucumbers?
As a cat owner, you’ve probably seen a dozen videos showing cats and cucumbers. You are also probably wondering what is so special about these long green vegetables that petrify cats so much. The answer to this question is not easy, and there are at least several explanations why cats are afraid of cucumbers. The most common of them is that cucumbers remind cats of snakes. Another popular theory is that cats jump in the air because they don’t feel comfortable with something lying right behind them.
Cucumbers may look like snakes
The most popular explanation for a cucumber prank is that the cat may associate it with a snake. This theory has been popularized by an animal behaviorist, Con Slobodchikoff, who explained that anything that looks like the carnivorous reptile would probably cause a fear response in a cat. Cucumbers share a number of features with these animals. They have similar shapes and curves.
There is, however, one important problem with the theory that a single cucumber looks like a snake. When we look at felines who live in their natural environment, they usually don’t get frightened in a similar situation. A cat can be intrigued by the sneaking animal, but the fear of snakes is rather uncommon. Cats would rather observe the snake with interest than run away from it.
Anything from behind can scare your cat
Another competing theory explaining why cats are scared by cucumbers says that it is a sudden and unexpected appearance of an object behind the cat that causes the reaction of fear. This view has been supported by a number of animal researchers, including Jill Goldman, a certified cat behaviorist. She claims that the cat’s stand-up reaction is caused by the fact that the pet wants to quickly move away to analyze the object from distance. Therefore, when a cat discovers a cucumber on the floor, it makes them jump and run away as they didn’t expect it to be there. However, if your cat sees you lay it on the floor, it is not frightening at all.
Reasons why you should not startle cats with cucumbers
If you are still driven by a temptation to shoot a cucumber vs. cat video that goes viral, better think of your furry friend’s health. Of course, watching it may seem funny, but it is certainly not amusing to the cat. The sudden feeling of being terrified may lead to a panic attack, which can trigger unexpected behavior. Your cat may, for instance, break something, hide for a long period of time, or experience prolonged stress.
If you startled your cat on purpose using a cucumber, never do it again. One such prank would probably not alter your cat’s health and behavior. However, you should keep in mind that regular practices of scaring an unsuspecting cat can cause persistent stress and anxiety. Such changes in mental health are difficult to treat and may be irreversible. Moreover, they can affect your small friend’s immune system and general well-being.
We hope that now you know why cucumbers scare cats. Remember that you should never suddenly interrupt when your cat is eating or deeply focused on something. When you secretly place a cucumber behind your pet, they can really get frightened to death and freeze. Cowing your little friend is cruel and you should never let it happen!