Cats seem to have an endless fascination with bathrooms. Whether it’s sinks, bathtubs or shower stalls, I have yet to meet a cat who isn’t intrigued by at least one of those. And when was the last time you’ve been able to go to the bathroom without a feline escort?

Some theories about cats’ fascination with bathrooms

I have some theories about why cats love bathrooms so much. I think some of it is due to the fact that cats love routine, and most of our bathroom routines tend to stay the same day after day, so it’s not surprising that cats want to be a part of it.

Then there’s the issue of closed doors – most cats hate them. If there’s anything going on behind closed doors, they want in on it. I live alone, so I tend to not close the bathroom door all the way, but of course, it does get closed when we have visitors. Inevitable, our unsuspecting visitor will find a welcoming committee outside the bathroom door when they come out!

Some cats like cool places, especially in the summer, which could account for the draw of tile floors and bathtubs, showers and sinks.

Ruby shares why she loves being in the bathroom

I decided to ask the girls about this topic. While Allegra occasionally comes in the bathroom to check on me, Ruby tends to hang out with me the entire time, and she likes to get up close and personal, often sitting on the vanity while I brush my teeth or put make up on. Not surprisingly, she had a lot to say:

Hi everyone, it’s Ruby! It’s about time Mom asked my expert opinion on something! Why do cats love bathrooms? What’s not to love! For starters, there’s the bathtub. I like to shove the shower curtain to the side, and then jump in and check everything out. I like playing in the tub, and scratching the bottom and the sides, too. Mom always checks on me when I do this. I think she’s worried that I might decide to use the tub as a litter box. As if! Why would I do that when I have a purrfectly good box for that right outside the bathroom?

Mom goes in the bathtub once a day, and I’ve learned not to go in there at those times. The one time I did – well, let’s just say I wasn’t thrilled with the outcome. You can read about my experience here.

I like to supervise Mom when she’d doing things at the sink. I like watching her floss her teeth – batting at the floss is so much fun! I also want to help her when she brushes her teeth – after all, she brushes Allegra’s and my teeth, and it’s only fair to return the favor, right? So I stick my face right under hers, and I really don’t understand why she doesn’t get that I’m just trying to help!

I also like watching Mom put  make up on, although I’m not sure why she bothers. She’s beautiful to me as she is. But she uses this really cool big powder puff, and it’s fun to bat that off the vanity. It’s also fun to bat her other supplies off the vanity when she doesn’t put them away fast enough.

Allegra doesn’t have much to say about bathrooms

Allegra’s favorite part about joining me in the bathroom is licking lotion off my skin after I have just applied it. But even though I use natural products, I still only let her do it for a very short while, because some of the ingredients in even the most natural products are not good for cats. She said she doesn’t have much to add to this article, except to remind me that the first photo I ever saw of her was of her on the toilet seat of her foster home.


Do your cats share your bathroom time with you?

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30 Comments on The Mystery of Why Cats Love Bathrooms

  1. I had a cat Fridayweed, who went absolutely loopy over bleach. Her behaviors if she could get near it included scrabbling, mewling, purring, rubbing her chin and body all over the surface, sniffling etc! I did my utmost to keep her away from any surface I had bleached in future, after witnessing this behavior.

    – If I ever put bleach in the toilet I had to firmly shut the door after myself or she would try and climb in the bowl! GAH!
    – Likewise if I ever wiped the countertops down with bleach.
    – She also loved to roll in the shower tray when someone finished showering.

    My current cat Alfy is just a toilet companion. One of the toilet doors doesn’t latch perfectly every time and this can cause some surprise if there are ever guests over!

      • I wasnt a huge bleach-user u til the pandemic. once we had those germs to worry about, we would obsessively bleach down every single thing we brought inside from the grocery store. needless to say, my clothes are covered w tiny little orange spots!! the weird thing was- after doing this, our cat, Puss, would HAVE to ‘scruff up the rug” in the kitchen. it was like clockwork. groceries-bleach-scruff up. she would go bananas w this kitchen rug! i’m still surprised it’s not completely shredded by now tbh. Anyhow, we looked it up, and apparently, bleach smells exactly like some cat pheromone thing. now that the pandemic is starting to slow down we still occasionally go in and lightly spray the rug… she needs her daily scruff after all 🙂

  2. My Calico cat loves the bath tub especially if the faucet if dripping after a shower. She loves to get wet and even drinks out of the bath tub. She has a bowl of water but prefers the bath tub. She jumped on the bed the other day and shook off all the water on herself on my husband. He was laughing an not thrilled at the same time. 🙂 I thought it was hilarious.

  3. My kitties love to go to the bathroom with me, even if it is for just a few seconds. They are utterly fascinated with what I am doing and MUST be a part of it. If I do close the door they will claw and tear at the door and cry bloody murder until I let them in. Anybody walking by just might think they are dying a most horrible death.

  4. Yes, my “fan club” is always waiting on the other side of the closed door. On more than one occasion I’ll “forget” to close the door all the way and in seconds it is pushed open (the smarter fan stands on hind legs and gives the door a push with her front paws, her challenged partner in crime uses his head… a battering ram) and I’m at their mercy. I like to sing in the shower and often we do a little duet; actually, I’m not sure if my Mau-Mau doesn’t fear I’m in pain, as she stands on the edge of the tub and yowls her little head off. What fun! I wouldn’t miss it for the world.

  5. I have one cat that wants to walk back and forth while I brush my teeth. Another family member will walk while my wife rinses the dishes for the dishwasher. And don’t get me started about the dishwasher.

  6. everyone here tries to get in at one point or another. Daiquiri desperately wants another fountain so she is fascinated by the faucet. Spud seems to think he will get alone time in there and no one will find him. And everyone knows that kittens get fed in there….which means there is a good chance there may be some kitten food to nom.

  7. When we’re in the bathroom together is the only time Phoebe lets me pick her up and love on her. She licks my face, chews my hair, rubs up all against me. Any other time all of this is strictly forbidden!

    • This sounds like my manolo. I Wil wake up in the early morning around 6am. And sometimes find him sleeping in the bathtub. Or he will lay in the bathroom sink. I was worried something is wrong but I think it’s normal still not 100% sure but Dearing that time I go in there and manolo is very loving . Only time I get to hold him and he’s OK with it very short time but still there’s a difference and he’s very loving at that time butting his head rubbing up agenst me and purring loudly . I just love my fur baby.

  8. One can never go into the bathroom for anything without the *gang* coming along. And, yes, in the summer, they love lying on the cooler porcelain of the tub! ♥♥♥

  9. Ingrid, I think you should strongly consider writing a book from Ruby’s perspective. For kids, for adults, I don’t know but I just read your post about the fridge tumble followed by the shower incident and had absolute giggle fits. Your Ruby “voice” really resonates and those posts are a special treat, like a reward for being good 🙂

  10. Cats don’t really follow me into the bathroom but “Alice” is one who loves water running from the tap in the washbasin so she can drink it… I used to think people made that up but have seen it for myself; one of our previous cats used to like doing that as well, and the same cat was positively fascinated by the flushing of the loo….. amazing she thought that was!

  11. I cannot go into the bathroom without Carmine following me in. He *hates* closed doors. Since I live alone, I always leave the door somewhat open for him, but of course when there’s company, the door gets shut! He always has to be there waiting for whoever comes out, though.

    Carmine used to love laying in the sink. He doesn’t do that anymore. He also used to sit between my shower curtain and liner when I had a shower when he was a kitten. It was really cute to see the outline of a cat through the liner.

    And Ruby is right – you are beautiful and you don’t need make up! You are beautiful inside and out. 🙂

  12. Wish, I had my boys toilet trained! As for Ingrid’s, Ruby’s, and Allegra’s article, how true! Hate doors closed. Any door! The tub, sink, and toilet seat are prime sitting areas, and sleeping areas.

    Try to move them when you need to use the toliet, well…..!!!! They love to have the water in the sink on too.

  13. My Ellie Mae doesn’t really sit inside my bathroom with me. She waits for me right out in the hall. She lays right by the door and waits for me. I have a shower curtain up for a door and sometimes she looks right around the corner while she is laying down to see what I am doing. It is cute. It is like she wants to make sure I’m ok but she gives me privacy. She is a cat that wants privacy at her box so it is like she is returning the favor. 😉

  14. We have double sicks in the bathrooms at my house and only use one sink in each one. In the main bathroom I put a soft blanket and the cats take turns sleeping in it. Also that bathroom houses the washer and dryer behind another door. Miss Kiki is obsessed with opening that door and looking inside.

  15. Both my cats are toilet trained and my bathroom always kept open for them to defecate .Have never ever used a “Cat Litter Tray” for all my cats in my snmall apartment in Mumbai.My 8 year old Traditional Persian(Original Long Hair)cat has this strange obsession for scratching at the locked toilet door and opening the latch and sitting inside the toilet.She has done this numerous times since i only keep the bathroom door always open as a toilet for my cats.

  16. Well… there is a rat who I can see in the bathroom right now, so that’s why I like it there at the moment. My human is not thrilled about this.

  17. On hot summer days the bathtub is the coolest spot in the house and perfectly suitable for a cat or two to relax and cool off. And Chelsea thinks I’m in there just for her entertainment and demands her special scratches.

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