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Why Does My Cat Bring Lizards In The House?

If your cat is bringing lizards in the house you may be annoyed, or just concerned about what they might do. But, more importantly, why is it happening…

Why Does My Cat Bring Lizards into the House?

If your cat brings lizards into your house, it’s likely that it’s operating on its natural “prey-retrieval” impulse. Frequently, cats will return home prizes from their hunting expeditions. This basically indicates that your cat is either bringing its kill home to you as a gift and “thank you” for your excellent care.

So, now you know. But do indoor cats do this? Do some cats like lizards? Would a cat ever kill a lizard? Keep reading for these answers, and much more…

Are Indoor cats likely to pick up lizards?

A  brown and black cat seated on the floor and a lizard.

A brown and black cat seated on the floor and a lizard.

Indoor cats that don’t have access to natural “prey” may substitute a favourite toy mouse or ball. As a result, if they happen to come upon a little creature, like a lizard, in their domain, they will almost definitely attack.

When your cat lets out that natural, innate drive to hunt, they will frequently return with “gifts” such as lizards or tiny rodents. Unfortunately, receiving lizard tails, insects, and bits of little, unfortunate creatures as a present is not unusual for cat owners.

Do Cats Like Lizards?

Lizards are immensely appealing to cats because when a lizard is attacked and tries to protect itself, it may lose its tail by voluntary constriction, depending on the breed of lizard. The lizard’s missing limb will continue to move, and therefore the chase for your cat continues. Due to a cat’s primordial hunting drive, it is challenging for your cat to take their victim away after they have trapped it.

Would a Cat Kill a Lizard?

Yes, a cat would kill a lizard. Cats are predators who like to hunt and kill creatures, like lizards, that are smaller than them. Cats are opportunistic and natural predators. Cats are predisposed to hunt, and they appear to be more attentive to moving things or creatures.

When a cat sees a lizard, they think of it as a toy or attractive prey. A lizard’s presence provides a chance for them to hone their rusted hunting abilities. So, they don’t waste any time in giving their hunting abilities a boost by catching and killing lizards and other small creatures like mice, birds, and frogs.

How Do I Stop My Cat from Bringing in Lizards?

If you want to keep your cat from bringing lizards into your house, you should give them lots of play-time every day to deflect their natural hunting instincts. This not only alleviates behavioral issues in cats who are prone to bringing mice or lizards to your door, but it also gives your cat some exercise.

Although many cats are content to chase a laser pointer, some need to practise “killing” their prey as well. Provide your cat with prey that it can “kill,” such as a tiny stuffed animal, if it appears frustrated or constantly wants to destroy anything it finds on the ground, such as a lone shoe.

Keep an eye out for lizards that sneak into the home while you’re inside and do your best to get rid of them before your cat has a chance to attack. When your cat is outside, try to keep an eye on them and keep them away from any reptiles they may come across.

If you live in an area where lizards are widespread, keeping your cat on a leash, even if you have a fenced yard, will make it easy for you to regulate your cat and monitor its interactions with its surroundings.

Should I Let My Cat Play with Lizards?

No. Although most lizards are harmless for your cat to play with, the occasional lizard may be carrying harmful parasites or bacteria that can harm your cat. As a result, cat owners should try to keep their cat away from playing with lizards.

Since this is sometimes an impossible task since we can’t watch our cats 24/7, owners who live in places where lizards are abundant should keep their cats inside unless supervised.

Do Cats Keep Lizards Away?

Yes, cats do keep lizards away. Cats are considered the natural adversaries of small creatures like lizards, and as a result, a lizard will rarely enter a home if they know a cat is lurking around.

Some lizards can walk upside down on the ceiling and, therefore, be safe from a cat up there, but if you live in a house where your cat can jump and climb, the lizards will be attacked or chased away.

Having a cat in the house will significantly minimize the number of lizards who choose to live with you.

Can Cats Eat House Lizards?

A cat closely staring at a green and brown lizard on the floor.

A cat closely staring at a green and brown lizard on the floor.

Due to its prey drive, a cat will happily eat a house lizard. Despite the fact that lizards are generally safe, consuming one is not recommended since they can be harmful to your cat. Cat owners should be aware that lizards are likely to be eaten by both indoor and outdoor cats.

Lizards are potentially poisonous element carriers and hosts for certain lethal parasites. Hence, it is not recommended for a cat to consume them. Since lizards contain harmful compounds in their bodies, your cat can develop significant stomach issues after eating them.

If you suspect your cat has eaten a lizard, contact your local veterinarian right once to minimize any potential health risks.

Do Stray Cats Eat Lizards?

Stray cats are more prone to hunt and eat lizards since they have no owners supervising their play or maintaining their health. Since many of these cats are also starving, a lizard can appear as an entertaining meal, providing a stray with a game as well as a snack.

Although this is safe most of the time, there are, unfortunately, cases of stray cats who have become sick and have died from eating lizards. Since these stray cats often go unnoticed and live under the radar, the number of stray cat lizard poisonings can never be determined.

If you think a stray cat, you’ve found has ingested a lizard and appears to be ill, contact a rescue or take them to a vet immediately.

What Should I Do If My Cat Eats a Lizard?

Call your veterinarian right away if you know or think that your pet ate a poisonous or parasite-carrying lizard. If your cat consumes a lizard, regardless of species, you should always visit your veterinarian due to the risk of liver flukes.

Otherwise, keep an eye on your pet for signs such as vomiting, diarrhea, lack of appetite, lethargy, swelling lymph nodes, shock, or a high heart rate. Call your veterinarian if you discover indications of toxicity or illness or if your pet is acting strangely.

Keep in mind that the majority of lizard species in North America are not poisonous. Although most contain salmonella, this does not guarantee that your pet will become ill as a result of ingesting one.

Should You Punish Your Cat for Bringing in a Lizard?

Never reprimand a cat for bringing tiny animals into the house, such as lizards or small rodents. Cats respond to incentives and goodies considerably more readily than they do to punishment.

Unfortunately, a cats’ hard-wired need to hunt is simply too powerful for owners to eliminate it entirely. As a result, the cat may experience more stress as they are forced to disregard their instincts. However, there are several things you can do to help slow down the steady supply of dead lizards in your kitchen.

If you give your cat a bell collar, for example, it will signal their prey when the cat is around, allowing tiny animals like lizards and rodents time to flee. Attaching a little bell to your cat’s existing comfy collar is an easy method to do this.

Lindsey Browlingdon