Cat Tries To Bury Water Bowl

Cat Tries To Bury Water Bowl

Are you confused as to why your cat exhibits queer behavior before eating food or drinking water? Seeing your cat digging and trying to bury their water bowl before drinking from it can be alarming.

Cat tries to bury water bowl: What does it mean?

These are the probable reasons why your cat tries to bury their water bowl:

It is instinctive behavior. 

Your cat is trying to bury their water bowl before drinking water because it is instinctive. You may have noticed that they display other queer behavior that is similar to this, such as pawing and digging at the food bowl and scratching the sides of the litter box before burying their waste.  

Your cat is unhappy with the water. 

Your cat may be trying to bury the water bowl because they are expressing their revulsion for something, just as they would bury her poop. This could mean that they are not content or do not like the taste of the water in the bowl. Try to check the water and see to it that it is clean and that nothing would affect the taste. Some cats do not like their water bowl near or beside their food bowl, and the digging could be their way to express their disgust with the placement. 

Your cat is curious. 

Your cat may simply be curious. She could be fascinated by the clear water or the water bowl itself, which is why they tend to dig and act as if they are trying to bury it.

Cat experts note that some cats may try to bury their water bowl because they feel like drinking some of the water later on.  These cats are protective of their food and water and exhibit it by covering or “burying” them. 

Why do cats scratch around their water dish?

Cats tend to scratch around their water dish because they do not like to be wet and only have good vision up close, except for things under their chin. They have to find the surface of the water without getting wet so they tend to scratch around the water dish first, which is the floor, to detect ground level water. Ground-level water is what cats prefer to drink, such as a puddle on the ground. Upon realizing that it is only the floor and no water, cats will lick the side of the water bowl, searching for the water’s surface and will proceed to drink from the bowl. 

Some cats may also scratch around the water bowl because they like to alert their owners that the water or bowl itself is dirty. They may be trying to tell you that the water needs to be changed or they prefer a particular kind of bowl.  Some cat owners suggest that a clear glass water bowl works for their cats while some suggest steel and ceramic water dishes.

Cats also tend to scratch around their water dish because they prefer moving water as they perceive it as fresh and clean. They may tap, scratch and nudge at the water bowl to oxygenate it and make it more appealing to drink. 

Why do cats try to bury and cover their food? 

Cats may bury and cover their food because of the following reasons:

  • They are caching or storing food.
  • It is instinctive behavior.
  • You may be feeding your cat too much. 
  • Your cat may be feeling ill. 
  • They are being fed by someone else, especially if they can access the outdoors. 

Why does my cat touch the water before drinking it?

Your cat is touching the water before drinking it because they could be uncomfortable with the shape of the bowl. Their whiskers could be touching the sides of the bowl and they do not like the sensation. If you notice that your cat is avoiding their water bowl, it could mean you need to change their water bowl. Opt for a shallow one so your cat can drink water easily.

Your cat may also be touching the water before drinking it because they are checking if the water is safe to drink. She may be feeling insecure especially if there are strange people near their drinking area.  Make sure to place your cat’s drinking bowl in a secluded area where only familiar people like family members have access. 

Your cat may also be doing it because of their advanced age. Elderly cats tend to have diminished eyesight and inferior cognitive abilities. If you have a senior cat,  extra loving care should be accorded to them. 


Cats are inquisitive and playful creatures, but they can also be finicky when it comes to their food and water. They will try to bury their water bowl because it is an instinctive behavior or because they are unhappy with the taste of the water. Felines may also try to bury their water bowl out of curiosity and fascination with the water in it. 

Image: / Викентий Елизаров