Why do cats knock things over all the timelike swatting a vase of flowers off a table, or tipping over a picture on the mantle? Well, they’re not just being jerks, or passive-aggressive.

According to veterinarian Dr. H. Ellen Whiteley, there are a couple reasons your cat insists on being destructive.

Number one: They’re bored. Cats need stimulation just like we do. So knocking things over is just something to while away the time. Dr. Whiteley likens it to a toddler who has crayons, but no paper, so they start drawing on the walls.

It also earns them attention – because you come running in the room when the vase crashes to the floor. So ask yourself, ‘Do we have enough cat toys?’ If the answer is yes, and your cat is still batting things off the table, it’s time to get new toys!

It can also be the result of a primitive behavior called “toying.” When your pet starts pawing at items, it’s similar to them batting around prey. Your thinks that knickknack could turn out to be a mouse. And pawing it would send it scurrying, giving her a good game.

And that’s why your cat insists on knocking things over all the time.

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