If you're a cat owner (or have ever spent the night with one), then you're probably well acquainted with the cat zoomies. You know, that time late at night when cats go crazy and run around like they're on speed.
While a lot of the things cats do are totally random and impossible to decipher, this one actually makes sense, according to scientists. As Inverse reports, it comes down to cats' sleep patterns.
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"The nighttime 'zoomies' or 'crazy capering' is common for a few reasons," Mikel Delgado, a postdoctoral fellow at the School of Veterinary Medicine at UC Davis, told. "One reason is that cats are naturally crepuscular, meaning active at dawn and dusk, which is when their natural prey (rodents) are active. Cats are not really nocturnal (a common misperception). So their internal rhythm just tells them, 'It's time to get active and start hunting.'"
And cats' natural instincts buttheads with our schedules, too. Since most humans are out during the day, cats nap a lot during the day and then have extra energy at night and that energy has to be burned off somehow.
If you're looking to curb the zoomies, make sure your cat is stimulated during the day. You can leave them stimulating toys, like food puzzles, and make sure to play with them in the early evening right after work to wear them out before your bed time.
Are you ready to learn more about your cat's behavior? Start with this article about why cats like sleeping on humans and then scroll through our training guide that will help you convince your cat to not meow all night long. In fact, we have lots of important cat-training tutorials including how to train kitties to give kisses!