What does it mean when my cat brings me dead animals?



Understanding Why Cats Bring Dead Animals

Cats are known for their independent and sometimes mysterious behavior. One of the most puzzling habits that cat owners often encounter is when their furry friend brings them a dead animal. While this behavior may seem strange and even unsettling to some, it's important to understand that there are various reasons why cats exhibit this behavior. In this article, we will delve into the possible explanations behind this peculiar feline behavior.

Cat Hunting Instincts

Cats are natural hunters, and despite being domesticated, they still retain their instinctual drive to hunt. When a cat brings you a dead animal, it is likely showcasing their hunting prowess. In the wild, cats hunt to survive, and by bringing you a "gift," they are essentially showing off their skills and providing for you as they would for their own family.

Marking Territory

Another reason why cats bring dead animals to their owners is to mark their territory. By presenting you with a deceased prey, your cat is leaving behind their scent on the animal, essentially claiming it as their own. It's their way of marking you as part of their territory and expressing their bond with you.

Seeking Approval and Praise

Cats are known for their independent nature, but they still seek validation and approval from their human companions. When a cat brings you a dead animal, they are seeking recognition and praise for their hunting skills. By acknowledging their efforts and showing appreciation, you can reinforce their behavior and strengthen your bond with your feline friend.

Bringing Gifts as an Offering

In some cases, cats may bring dead animals as a form of offering. Cats have been known to bring their owners "gifts" as a way to show love and gratitude. In the cat's mind, they are providing for their human family by sharing their successful hunt. While it may not be the most desirable gift for humans, it is a sincere gesture of affection from your feline companion.

Handling the Situation

If your cat brings you a dead animal, it's important to handle the situation appropriately. Avoid scolding or punishing your cat, as this may confuse or distress them. Instead, calmly and gently remove the animal from their grasp. You can then offer them praise and affection to reinforce their bond with you.

Preventing Unwanted "Gifts"

If you find that your cat's habit of bringing you dead animals becomes excessive or unwanted, there are a few steps you can take to discourage this behavior. Firstly, ensure that your cat is well-fed and has access to a balanced diet. Hungry cats are more likely to hunt and present their kills. Secondly, consider providing your cat with interactive toys and playtime to redirect their hunting instincts. Lastly, if the behavior persists, consult with a veterinarian or animal behaviorist for further guidance.


While it may seem puzzling or even unsettling when your cat brings you dead animals, it's important to remember that this behavior is natural for felines. Understanding the reasons behind this behavior can help you appreciate your cat's instincts and strengthen your bond with them. Remember to handle the situation calmly and provide alternative activities to redirect their hunting instincts. If you need further guidance on cat behavior or care, consider visiting the NBCPet website for more information and resources tailored to pet owners.

Julieth Bill

Hi, I'm Julieth Bill. Before I was a writer for the NBCpet.com blog I was known for inventive and unusual treatments of dogs, cats, bird, fish, snakes, horses, rabbit, reptiles, and guinea pigs. Julieth worked for major zoos around the world. He Also Receives Pets a Scholarship.

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