Can Cats Swim? - CanCats.Net

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Can cats swim? The simple answer to this one is yes they can, however for the most part they do not want to.

We all know that cats generally dislike the water. Just trying to bathe a cat for whatever reason is the fastest lesson in that little fact. Bathing a cat is not fun for either the pet or his owner.

Should the situation arise where a cat needs to swim, (ie to remove themselves from a threatening situation, or if they accidentally fall into your swimming pool) a cat is physically able to swim.

In fact cats can swim even if they have never done so before. They do not need training. Much like dogs a cat will instinctively kick their legs and stay afloat.

can cats swimCan Cats Swim – Exceptions

Believe it or not, some cats actually do enjoy swimming. The ancient Egyptians used cats to catch fish as well as mice.

There is also a breed of cat called the Turkish Van that will often jump into water, just as the ancestors did in the Lake Van region of Turkey, when the heat got so intense the only way to cool down was to go for a swim.

And lets not forget that cats are part of a much wider family. Big cats are very able swimmers and will do so to hunt and cover large distances over relevant terrain. Those in hot climes will also swim simply to keep cool.

One cat that has evolved to swim with great efficiency is the Asian fishing cat. This species has partially webbed paws that enable them to swim at greater speeds. They are also very adept at diving, a skill required in order to catch their prey.

Can Cats Swim – Water Aversion

It seems that one of he reasons cats dislike the water so much, and will only swim when they really have to, is due to the fact we have domesticated them this way.

Over millennia we have shielded cats away from water. House cats are able to clean themselves. Gradually over a long period of time, cats have had less and less reason to enter the water.

Then, on the rare occasions they do, it is generally because of a forced bath where the owner has to rub them down with a medicated shampoo to remove lice. It is no surprise that water represents anything but fun to the average house cat.

Occasionally though – some cats will enter the water for a swim and enjoy it. Just check out these couple of videos below to see what we mean.


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