20 Things Only Tabby Cat Owners Understand

Tabby cats are identified by their unique markings. They are often mistaken as a breed, but actually, tabbies are any domestic cat with a coat that bears stripes, lines, swirling patterns or dots that joint at the forehead with a mark that resemble an M. While all of the Maine Coon cats are tabbies, not all tabbies are Maine Coons.

Tabbies are known for having unique features and at first glance, they may look similar, but when you compare two side by side, you see differences in their wonderful markings and patterns. They are also known for being playful and having a loud purr, but the one thing that they all have in common is their special markings that distinguish them as a type, rather than a specific breed.  Here are 20 things that only tabby cat owners understand.

1. They own their masters

So you think that you’d like to own a tabby cat huh? How would you feel about becoming the cats human instead?Tabbies may depend on their owners for food, shelter and attention, but they have a unique way of taking ownership. These wonderful kitties move in and literally take over the home. They start by mesmerizing you with their sweet and adorable faces as kittens.

They are so cute that you fall in love with them and it lasts for a lifetime. You can tell by the way that they strut around the house that they think they own the place. If you own a tabby, you’re probably nodding your head in agreement and if you’re considering adopting one, get ready to become the personal possession of your new kitty. They tend to be a little possessive and if somebody gets too close to you, don’t be surprised if your tabby gets in between the two of you to let them know that you are his, and his alone.

2. They love paper bags

Tabbies love to play with paper bags and if you don’t believe us, just set one on the floor and see what happens. Soon your little furry friend will knock the bag over and play inside the bag. It’s double the fun and entertainment when you have two of them and one large paper bag. They love to hear the sound that the paper makes as they bat at it and wrestle around inside.

It’s hilarious to watch your kitty disappear into the bag, only to see a paw emerge. They know how to have so much fun with common everyday items and bags happen to be among their favorite. Just keep the plastic up and stick with paper to keep them safe. If your cat doesn’t seem too interested in the bag at first, just crinkle the paper a little bit because the sound is something that he finds almost irresistible. There’s just something about the crinkling noise that drives cats crazy.

3. Boxes are better than toys

A tabby will get so much fun out of a cardboard box that you’ll roll on the floor laughing when you see them in action. There are a few things that you can do to transform an ordinary box into a thing of sheer delight for your tabby. Cut a few holes here and there and watch them play. It’s entertaining for you and for whatever reason, this cat will have as much, or possible more fun with a box than with their entire arsenal of cat toys.

4. A scratching post is required

One of the best things that you can do is to either buy or build your tabby cat a scratching post. If you don’t, it won’t be long until you find out why. These cats have a natural instinct which drives them to sharpen their claws. It isn’t that they’re trying to ruin your drapes and furniture upholstery. They just have a true need to do this. When you introduce them to a scratching post, they learn that this is where they should do their nail sharpening and they are less likely to cause damage from clawing and scratching in the home.

Orange Tabby

5. They are in and outers

Your tabby will ask to get into the bedroom with you at night. You may hear him meow and beg and if you don’t respond, he is apt to scratch at the door. Don’t be fooled because even though he is a cute and sweet little thing when he’s young, those claws can wear deep grooves in wooden doors. Once he’s inside, he may stay for a while, but it won’t be long before he wants to get out again so it’s a better idea to just leave the door open to begin with. Tabby owners understand this fact of being a cat parent all too well. If your cat is trained to toilet out of doors, he may meow at you loudly at night until you get up and let him out to do his business.

6. How dare you let the cat box get full?

Most Tabbys are clean cats who take pride in their appearance. Your kitty will probably let you know if the cat box needs to be changed and refilled with fresh litter. These cats love to dig around and they prefer that the area is somewhat clean and that the litter is not filled with clumps that are hard to manage. In addition, your cat will be put off if there is a very strong odor of urine in the box, so make sure that you keep his litter box maintained regularly. If you don’t he will probably kick the nastiest items out on the floor where you’ll have a harder time cleaning the mess.

7. Don’t take his moodiness personally

Your cat is prone to pulling a Jeckyll and Hyde personality switch on you. He’s not trying to be mean or to hurt your feelings, but Tabbys tend to get lost in their own world at times. There will be days when he wants to cuddle and snuggle with you and others when he doesn’t want a thing to do with you. This is typical behavior and when he’s not in the mood for people, respect his wishes and let him have his privacy. He’ll come around and turn back into that lovable little pest that gives you no peace whatsoever.

8. No area in your home is sacred

Your tabby is inquisitive by nature and there is little that will deter him from exploring the house in-depth. He’s going to attempt to fit into every nook and cranny in his investigations so it’s wise to ensure that all vents are securely covered so he doesn’t crawl into spaces where he shouldn’t be. If you can’t find your cat, try looking in dark corners, open pantries, behind appliances and underneath furniture. These cats are not afraid of dark places. Your cat is capable of taking you to places in the home that you’ve never been before.

cat licking lips

9. Your pet taxi is a necessary item

Have you ever tried taking a tabby to the veterinarian without a pet carrier? If you have then you understand why we say that having one is a must. Cats tend to go wild when they are inside of a moving vehicle. Some do well enough and even enjoy a car ride, but others develop an intense fear and can actually cause you to swerve and go off the road. Make sure that your tabby is placed in a pet taxi or pet holder that is well secured inside of the vehicle for their own safety and yours as well. It’s not much fun to have a frightened cat flying from the front seat to the back looking for a way out of the car.

10. Your friends will get sick of hearing about your cat

That is unless they are also tabby owners. Your cat is so cue and he does such amazing things that you can’t help but telling anyone that will listen about what he’s been up to lately. Tabby cats are very playful and they can amuse themselves with mundane items from around the house. It’s really entertaining to watch them play. When they do something cute or adorable, it’s hard to resist retelling the story, but it happens often so try to keep the bragging to a minimum or your buddies at work may start avoiding you at lunch time.

11. Your cat will not be ignored

Are you listening to me? This is the look in your cat’s eyes when he believes that you’re ignoring him. When your tabby wants to have your attention, he’ll do whatever it takes to get you to focus only on him. He may start out with a few light meows and if you don’t respond, he’ll turn up the volume. If this still doesn’t work, he’ll get physical.

If you’re standing you are likely to have him intertwine himself between your ankles and rub up against you. If you’re sitting down, he may jump into your lap. It doesn’t matter that you’re trying to read the newspaper. Your tabby will insinuate himself in between you and whatever it is that you are doing. The point is, he will not be ignored when he wants to be heard. Tabbys can be persistent and they don’t easily give up.

12. You lose your privacy when you own a tabby

When your tabby decides that he wants to spend time with you, he’ll stick with you no matter where you go. It’s not uncommon for these cats to follow you right into the bathroom. If you’re in the shower and the door is left open, he may not appreciate all the steam being generated and he probably will want you to get out as quickly as possible because of his distaste for running water and getting wet.

Some tabbies have been known to sit outside of the shower and meow loudly to let their owners know that it’s time to get out. Be prepared to lose your privacy because as far as your cat is concerned, there is no such thing. If you close the bathroom door with your tabby on the other side, he is likely to meow loudly or scratch on the door until you re-emerge. One possible solution is to take your shower when there is another family member around to keep him distracted.

13. Your cat will carry on a conversation with you

Tabbies are famous for being talkers. They enjoy meowing at their pet parents and hearing them talk back. You’ll be amazed at how long these cats can carry on a conversation with you. Some of the funniest cat videos show tabbies answering every question that their owners ask. It is as though they know exactly what you’re asking and are willing to give you the long version in response. Not all tabbies are vocal but the majority of them are active talkers, especially when they want something from you. The voice is usually soft unless he is feeling some type of urgency. When he’s feeling frightened or jazzed up with feline energy, your tabby can get loud.

14. You have to come to them

Most tabby owners know what we’re talking about even without an explanation. For the rest of you, here it is. Tabbies are notorious for waiting until you sit down to relax, then sitting across the room from you and meowing loudly. The cat is letting you know that they want something from you. It doesn’t generally matter how much you invite them to come over to where you’re sitting because they expect you to get up from your comfortable place and walk to where they’re at.

It could be that their food or water dish is empty, but most likely, they just want you to show some love and affection. Tabby cats usually do this when they’re getting ready to go into a touch me not mood, or when they’re just coming off of one. This shows that your cat has developed an attitude for the time being. It’s also a way that he feels like he’s in charge. If your cat can make you do what he wants then he’s the one that is in charge of the house and it’s a trap that you should avoid falling into. Don’t let your cat tell you what to do, or you’ll become his slave for life.

15. People will know you’re a cat owner by your furry sweaters

Tabbies are big time shedders. They shed their coats and leave fur in a variety of places around the house. This happens more if your cat has built up a heavy winter coat and then sheds it as the weather warms. It’s not difficult to detect a cat owner because the tiny little hairs are everywhere from the floors to furniture and clothing. They are especially bad on dress trousers and wool materials.

You’ll want to vacuum frequently and keep a lint brush handy if you want to conceal the fact that you own a cat. It’s helpful to keep your tabby well groomed, brushing him a couple of times a week, but be prepared because even when you do everything the right way, there is still going to be some hair around the house.

16. They do break things

Tabbies are inquisitive cat and there are some objects that they just can’t seem to resist. This is particularly true if it is something that is shiny or that dangles. You’ll quickly learn to keep lovely ornamental glass put back into inaccessible places because these curious cats do climb and if they see something that they like, it’s likely to get batted around. If a cat had hands, they would want to touch everything.

One of the things that they most enjoy playing with is a cord that is used to open and close window blinds. If you have drapery ties with baubels that hang down, your cat is eventually going to be drawn to them. If he can get his claws into the material he’ll play with it for hours, or until it lies in a pile of thread on the floor. Sometimes it seems like your tabby just knocks things over and breaks them for the sheer sport of it. Of course your cat is perfect and would never do something like this on purpose so we’ll just say that they can be accident prone at times.

17. Being stubborn is just what they do

There will be wonderful times when your tabby is the most sweet and accommodating cat on the planet. He has the capacity to be nice, obedient and loyal to your wishes, but then there are the other times. Your cat can turn on a dime and become the most obstinate little fur ball you’ve ever known. If there is something that he wants to do, it could be very difficult to discourage him or to stop him. Tabby owners understand that when their cats are focused on something, they develop tunnel vision. They won’t make eye contact with you and may even ignore you when you are giving them instructions. Tabbies can be downright stubborn at times, but don’t worry, because with these amazing cats, there are more good times than there are bad.

18. They can hide in plain sight

Tabbies are notorious for finding a comfortable place to take a nap and disappearing. They may be in the same room with you sleeping, while you’re panicking, certain that they’ve escaped to the great outdoors. There have been so many instances of tabbies lying under furniture or under a box or even in a pile of laundry. When they’re in their own zone, no matter how much you call, if they’re not in the mood to get up, you’re going to have trouble finding them. Try checking the obvious places first.

Look in the bedroom, under the covers, under the furnishings, in the closets or behind appliances. Before you panic, take a deep breath and check all of the potential hiding places where your cat could be hiding. It isn’t that he’s trying to scare you, he just isn’t willing to give up a comfortable spot to let you know that he’s in the same room that you’re in.

19. Laser pointers and yarn are a source of fascination

Nothing will get your tabby going and ready for action like a laser pointer. They absolutely go wild chasing the elusive light that they can never quite seem to make contact with. Tabbies truly enjoy this type of entertainment and they will play with you and your laser pointer for hours if you’ll let them. This is also true for a plain ball of yarn or twine.

Cats love to chase things and when you drag something as simple as a piece of yarn or twine in front of them, they form a fascination with catching it. The odd thing about this is that when they finally get their claws or teeth into it, they bat it around a few times and there’s nothing more to do. As long as you’re willing to provide a little animation, your cat is easily amused. The cool thing about tabby cats is that whether you go with high tech toys or very simple ones, as long as you’re involved in the game, they’re happy to play.

20. Their sleeping positions will crack you up

Tabbys find the most uncomfortable looking positions to sleep in. They’re known for draping themselves over furnishings or twisting their bodies until they look like a contortionist. There are other times when they curl up in the traditional sleeping cat pose, but don’t be surprised when you find your cat asleep in a strange position. The reason that they do this is that as cats sleep, they tend to stretch out to find more comfortable positions. There is no need to disturb your cats nap when you find him in an uncomfortable position because he is the one who made the decision to do this. He’s probably feeling very comfy and don’t worry, he’s alright, he’s just being a cat.

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