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Why are cats afraid of cucumbers?

Man we love cats. Even the most mundane of cat behaviors will have a meme made for it. Cats being grumpy. Cats being jerks. Cats shaking. While our domesticated felines may like to make us think they are as cool as a cucumber, they in fact lose their freaking shit when confronted with the actual veggie.

Cats afraid of Cucumber

Why are our cats afraid of cucumbers? Science weighs in on the issue to try and decipher the extreme reaction cats have towards the elongated vegetable.

If you haven’t seen already there have been a few videos floating around the interwebs as of late starring cats almost jumping out of their skin at the sight of the green member of the gourd family. Our mothers taught us never to laugh at someone else’s pain, but that was a lesson taught before YouTube was invented. Some cats are faced with cucumber chaos…

While others cautiously test the waters…

So, are cats really afraid of cucumbers? If that’s the case why? According to animal behaviour expert Dr. Roger Mugford, the scared shitless reaction cats have towards a cucumber confrontation is rooted in their natural instincts.

Speaking to the Telegraph Dr Mugford said “Cats have to be suspicious of the unknown: it could represent the danger of a snake or another predator. I suspect that there would be the same reaction to a model spider, a plastic fish or a human face mask. So not an inherent feature of cucumbers, just their unusual context.”

So what does the good doctor make of the cucumber conundrum? ““I think that the reaction is due to the novelty and unexpectedness of finding an unusual object secretly placed whilst their heads were down in the food bowl“.

Which really is the same as looking up from your cereal bowl in the morning and seeing Mark Latham rubbing his nipples against your kitchen window. That’s just not something you see everyday (it’s not something we ever want to see either). But the way cats react to things are just funnier.

Thank you feline friends, without you the internet would be a dull place

Story first seen on I Fucking Love Science.