Why Do Cats Sniff Everything?

You may have noticed that your cat will sniff almost anything you put in front of it, even if it is not food. Most of the time, newer things will get a hefty once over by your feline’s nose. Have you ever wondered why cats do this?

Cats Are Farsighted

Most people aren’t aware of this but cats are actually farsighted creatures. They have trouble seeing objects up close so they rely heavily on smell and touch. This is why you may notice your cat approaching a new object with caution. Not only does it appear blurry and large, but the scent is not familiar. This is where the whole “Cucumber Scare” came from and why it is actually not funny, but cruel.

Cats Know You by Scent

It is your smell that helps your cat recognize you, not what you look like! They also use your voice as well but rely so heavily on their sense of smell that if you do smell like something they are not used to, they can react negatively towards you. This is why many cats will actually put distance between themselves and their owners after being somewhere that has other animals. It is only temporary, no worries!

Cat nose
A domestic cat's sense of smell is about fourteen times as strong as humans'

Cats Leave Scent Maps

It doesn’t matter if it is a box, a human, or a pineapple… If a cat rubs it, it is not only claiming it as theirs but leaving their own scent behind on it! This is another part of why cats sniff everything. If an object smells like another cat they will know they are on another cat’s turf. This also helps a cat navigate around as well. When they rub their scent on objects throughout the house, it helps them be more aware of where they are. This is also how they find their way back home if let outside.

More on Cat Behavior

We’ve written lots on cat behavior, if you’d like to learn more you can read one of these articles below:


Is My Cat Autistic?

Cat Dementia: Causes & Signs

Hair Pulling in Cats

Why Does My Cat Pee on the Floor?

Head Pressing in Cats – Know The Difference

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i think its funny when cats do sniff stuff


My cute cat seems to sniff everything! I grabbed a piece of chocolate from the fridge – she couldn’t help but sniffing it. I put a CD into muh computer – she had to sniff it first! I dress up, and put on a new pair of pants – she was smelling in right away! It seems my little cutie is very curious!!!


My cat seems to smell every plant in the garden and loves to rub herself around them, she also chases shadows and pounces on them. She has the habit of drinking from a running tap, if I put water out for her she will not touch it but will drink from muddy puddles in the Garden.


My Stormy will sometimes sniff me when I give him kisses and hugs.


Aw that’s way too cute! Same here! My cat does that when I give her kitty treats! 🙂