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What makes my cats want to roll in the dirt?

 
 
roger
 
Reply Fri 3 Apr, 2009 08:44 pm
Honestly, Spooky is such a dedicated house cat, it takes five minutes of self examination to work up the nerve to go outside. Soon as he does, he hits the dirt. Rolls from one side to the other, and balances on his back and wriggles like a worm on a hook. Rub him, and your hand comes away dirty. Swat him off a chair and you get a small dust cloud.

There is evidence (dirt) that Nermal does the same, but he spends enough time outside you don't see him doing it.

Is this some sort of skin problem, or do they just like to annoy the boss?
 
View best answer, chosen by roger
Rockhead
 
  1  
Reply Fri 3 Apr, 2009 09:00 pm
@roger,
I got one of two is a dirt devil.

the lil' female stray I took in in the fall is hell on my big house plants. I finally gave in and made her a spot in the schefflera...

(the big tom thinks she's an idiot)
roger
 
  1  
Reply Fri 3 Apr, 2009 09:03 pm
@Rockhead,
Well, yeah. One year I set out a dozen impatiens. They were gorgeous, and thrived in partial shade. Oh, Boy! Soft dirt!!
sullyfish6
 
  1  
Reply Fri 3 Apr, 2009 09:32 pm
They are either scratching their backs in the dirt (rabbits do it all the time)

or trying to pick up another cat's scent (if they are fixed)
0 Replies
 
lmur
 
  2  
Reply Fri 3 Apr, 2009 09:34 pm
@roger,
Are you sure he isn't taking the dirt out?
roger
 
  1  
Reply Fri 3 Apr, 2009 09:41 pm
They've been fixed all right. I'm just wishing they could use some nice clean gravel, or something. Anyway, you don't think they've got some skin problem that needs attention?
0 Replies
 
roger
 
  1  
Reply Fri 3 Apr, 2009 09:42 pm
@lmur,
No, they're bringing the dirt in. Trust me.
0 Replies
 
ossobuco
 
  1  
Reply Fri 3 Apr, 2009 09:44 pm
@roger,
Back when I had cats, there wasn't much exposed soil between plants, what with a smallish yard and groundcover or mulch.
Pacco did have dirt to wiggle worm in, in northern california, and sand aplenty here in new mexico. Nothin' like a corgi totally sand encrusted. I think it's a natural move and not necessarily a matter of skin problem. On the other hand, who knows?
roger
 
  1  
Reply Fri 3 Apr, 2009 09:47 pm
@ossobuco,
Yeah, Nerm brings in sand, too. I've got a gritty spot on his side of the bed.
mismi
 
  1  
Reply Fri 3 Apr, 2009 11:14 pm
@roger,
My kitty does it...but no skin problem to speak of. Thinking it is just an animal thing...
roger
 
  1  
Reply Fri 3 Apr, 2009 11:39 pm
@mismi,
That's kind of a relief, then. Thanks.

If I had a kitchen sink with separate tubs for wash and rinse, I would give that a shot. I know from experience that most of the wretched beasts will tolerate the treatment just long enough to get all soapy. It can be awkward, restraining a critter with 18 claws and a set of fangs once they determine they've had enough.
ossobuco
 
  1  
Reply Fri 3 Apr, 2009 11:50 pm
@roger,
I've washed cats.

Carefully.
0 Replies
 
dlowan
 
  1  
Reply Sat 4 Apr, 2009 03:34 am
@roger,
It feels really, REALLY good.
0 Replies
 
sullyfish6
 
  1  
Reply Sat 4 Apr, 2009 05:41 am
I'd just brush them with a grooming brush.

Your local pet store will have them for sure.

They will really enjoy that and it may stop them from their outside behavior.
0 Replies
 
caribou
 
  1  
Reply Sat 4 Apr, 2009 09:05 am
I looked at a couple of links.
Seems like cats just like to roll in dirt. Some people seem to think that the more you bathe them, the more they will roll.
Someone suggested patting off the dust and brushing them.

They are just trying to drive you crazy.
roger
 
  1  
Reply Sat 4 Apr, 2009 09:46 am
@caribou,
That seems to cover it.
0 Replies
 
dlowan
 
  1  
Reply Sat 4 Apr, 2009 09:54 am
@caribou,
They LOVE scritching.

I suspect it cleans their coats a bit, too.
roger
 
  1  
Reply Sat 4 Apr, 2009 10:00 am
@dlowan,
Cleans their coats! Wash the big one and your drain will permanantly clog with mud.
dlowan
 
  1  
Reply Sat 4 Apr, 2009 10:04 am
@roger,
Lol!!!

I meant from their point of view....like it likely helps them with oil, and parasites, and dead skin flakes and such.


I don't think they view dust on the sofa and such as a major problem.

Mine have always pretty much got rid of the dirt particles before they come inside...you seem to have some kind of highly absorbent cat problem!!!!
0 Replies
 
msolga
 
  1  
Reply Sat 4 Apr, 2009 11:13 pm
Yes, I think they are actually indulging in a cleansing dust bath ... cleansing for them, though not necessarily for us or our domestic environment!

But still ... they look so happy, so contented, as they go about the business of their dust bath. <sigh>
 

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