Cat reactions to cucumbers are quite bizarre. Felines leap out of their skin when caught unaware by these green vegetables, and it’s likely because they think that they’ve been blindsided by a predator.
A cat is busy eating or sleeping when he turns around and finds a cucumber behind him. Your cat would be just as startled or terrified by a random object that appeared out of nowhere. The cat didn’t see, hear or smell the cucumber, and this plays havoc with his natural survival instincts.
There are other possible expansions for a cat’s aversion to cucumber. Many believe that felines mistake cucumbers for green snakes. There are, of course, many natural predators of cats. No cat likes to be caught unaware when he’s at his most vulnerable (sleeping, eating, etc.)
Why Is My Cat So Afraid of Cucumbers?
Your cat is NOT afraid of a cucumber. As IFL Science explains, the fright stems from something unexpected being in his path. Cats are afraid of anything that sneaks up on them.
Consider this from your cat’s point of view. He is minding his own business, eating or drinking. He can hear movement taking place around him, but doesn’t mind. He recognizes the voices of his human family. In addition, he can smell people. Everything seems to be in order.
Once your cat has finished his meal, he’ll turn around. He’ll be thinking that it’s time to groom himself and then take a nap. This is how it’s always been for cats.
Now, go back and watch one of those cat vs. cucumber videos on YouTube again. You’ll notice that at no point do the cats see the cucumbers being placed down behind them.
This means that, while their back is turned, a cucumber is virtually invisible to a cat. It has no scent, after all. As far as your pet is concerned, his path will be clear when he turns around.
Now, of course, this isn’t the case. When your cat looks behind him, there’s a strange object in his way. What’s more, it’s a strange object that he has never encountered before. Cats are obligate carnivores that live on protein. As a result, he’ll be scared out of his wits.
My Cat Showed No Reaction to a Cucumber
What’s up with this lack of reaction? Is your cat going blind, or does he just have nerves of steel? It’s likely that the cat happened to see you place the cucumber in his territory.
Again, this all cements the fact that cats are not afraid of cucumbers. They are afraid of things that appear in their personal space without any warning.
Place a cucumber on the ground for your cat to sniff and he’ll show no interest. He certainly won’t be startled in the way he is when unexpectedly ambushed.
If you want to test a cat’s true relationship with cucumber, avoid the jump scare. Greet your cat when you get home from the grocery store.
Let him go about his business as per normal. Wait until he’s watching and slowly place the cucumber on the floor. Now film the reaction: he’ll show absolutely no interest in the vegetable.
At most, he may sniff it before wandering off in search of something more interesting to do. That’s more demonstrative of a cat’s true relationship with cucumbers.
Do Cats Think That Cucumbers are Snakes?
Some people believe that cats are afraid of cucumbers because they mistake them for green snakes, such as a green tree python. This is entirely possible, and certainly explains their fright.
Cats have a healthy fear of constrictor and venomous snakes. If a snake is brazen enough to sneak up on a cat, it would presumably have bad intentions. Your pet would be right to be afraid.
If your cat does assume that he’s encountered a snake, he’ll bolt. Fight-or-flight instincts are vital to a cat’s survival, and he’ll often take the latter (safer) option. Your pet will opt to escape the immediate situation and reassess the situation from a safe distance.
Watch how your cat reacts if you are determined to run ‘the cucumber test.’ Does he leap into the air and seek an elevated hiding place? If so, your cat has mistaken the cucumber for a snake.
Feline instinct is to reach higher ground to avoid being attacked. Your cat may come down and investigate the cucumber further once he’s plucked up sufficient courage.
Is Scaring a Cat with a Cucumber Just Harmless Fun?
It makes people internet famous for fifteen minutes. Does that justify the action? Frightening a cat in this way can be dangerous. Just some of the fates that can befall a cat after a sudden shock include:
- Stress and anxiety. Cats can become stressed and anxious in the home after a fright. He will no longer feel safe in his own home, and always be on the lookout for the next threat.
- Shock. If your cat is scared enough, he may even go into shock.
- Gastric issues. Cats undertaking unplanned physicality immediately after eating may regurgitate their meal or experience severe intestinal upset.
- Personal injury. If your cat leaps out of his skin and looks for an escape route, he may hurt himself. He may run in front of a car or jump off a balcony to escape the threat.
You will be invading a sacred territory for your cat. Cucumbers are only terrifying when unexpected. One moment your cat is tucking into his food, and the next, he’s startled.
A Cat’s Eating Space Must Never Be Disturbed
This can leave your cat wondering if his eating area is safe. Your cat may decide that he doesn’t want to eat, in case he’s frightened by something again.
Your cat has low fat reserves in their body. If he doesn’t eat or drink for 24 hours, his life is potentially in danger. Cats are already fickle about how and where they eat.
Scaring your cat with a cucumber will leave him with serious physical and psychological damage. Your bond with your cat may never be the same again. Likewise, you may do permanent damage to your cat’s sense of safety in the home.
Cats are companions, not sources of experimentation. They provide hours of entertainment and amusement just by being themselves. Don’t muddy those waters by willfully terrifying them.