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Home > Cats > Why Your Cat Carries Around a Toy & Meows: 6 Possible Reasons

Why Your Cat Carries Around a Toy & Meows: 6 Possible Reasons

tricolored cat playing with cat toy

Cats are very eclectic creatures. One moment they’re scurrying on the floor and pouncing on shadows, the next, they’re scratching a defenseless tree. Either way, these furry bundles of joy are always great company and, of course, incredibly cute.

Sometimes, cats love to carry around their toys and meow. Not really a meow, but somewhat of a meow with a sharper tone. This behavior is normal in dogs since they fetch. But in cats, it’s quite unusual.

If you’ve noticed this behavior with your feline friend, it’s normal to have a couple of questions like “Is this normal?”  or “Is this behavior unique to my cat?” The following are some common reasons for this behavior and what to do about it.

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The 6 Reasons Why Your is Carrying Around a Toy and Meowing

1. They Want to Play With You

Although cats are solitary creatures, they’re straight suckers when it comes to play. Play helps cats develop physical coordination and the hunting skills they need to survive in the wild. So when it’s playtime, who better to play with than their amazing owners?

Cats will carry their toys and yowl if they want you to play with them. This is especially true if you actively engage in playtime with your cat. You’ll notice that once you start playing with your cat, they’ll stop following you around and meowing. Go ahead and give your cat the attention it deserves.

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2. It’s a Display of the Cat’s Motherly Instincts

Motherly instincts are transcendent over different species. A female cat that carries around her toys and meows is putting up a motherly show embedded in her DNA. The cat is simply “pretending” that her favorite toy is also her most beloved offspring.

The interesting part is that this behavior is common in cats that have already had their first litter and those that haven’t. So, if you have a fecund female cat, don’t worry too much. She’s only practicing for motherhood.

Cat playing
Photo By: Dorothe, Pixabay

3. They’re Declaring Their Catch

Some cat behaviors are instinctive and can be tied to their evolutionary patterns. It’s common for cats in the wild to alert the rest of the pride after catching prey. That’s because they want everybody else to get a share of the delicacy.

The safe confines of your apartment are the cat’s jungle and their toy, their prized catch. So when they meow while carrying their favorite stuffed toy, they’re just declaring their catch. A brief belly rub would do a great deal to encourage them to sharpen their hunting skills.


4. It’s Teaching You How to Hunt

Mother cats often present injured or half-dead prey to their kittens to teach them how to hunt. In doing so, they show their litter what prey animals look like, what they smell like, and how to handle them.

When your female cat brings you a toy and meows, it could be showing you the ropes of hunting. While the cat’s stuffed toy is far from being edible, it’s perfect for teaching and harmless to the litter. The best course of action is to play along and join in the fun. Who knows? One day, your cat might raise a litter of ferocious hunters.

Burmese cat face before pounce hunting to toy mouse
Photo By: Viacheslav Lopatin, Shutterstock

5. Expressing Affection

Sometimes when your cat brings you a toy and meows, all it’s doing is merely expressing the love and affection it has towards you. Cats are naturally possessive and territorial. So, when it presents its favorite toy to you, it means that it trusts you.

The worst thing you could do is shoo it away. Instead, give it a gentle petting or a belly rub. Cuddles also work just as well.


6. It’s Presenting a Damaged Toy

Your cat can get a little aggressive with its favorite toys. When the aggression goes overboard, your cat will end playtime with a damaged toy. As the sole custodian and provider of the cat, you’re also the one responsible for repairing or replacing damaged toys. And that’s exactly what you should do.

brown tabby playing with cat toy
Photo By: Arina Krasnikova, Pexels

Help, My Cat Is Yowling at Night!

Cats are crepuscular, meaning they’re active during the day and at night too. Male cats are particularly notorious for being active at night, causing a ruckus until dawn. If your cat is carrying around its toy and yowling, don’t worry. It’s only doing its imaginary hunting and announcing its trophy kill.

What’s more, don’t forget that, unlike cats, you sleep almost the entire night. This leaves an attention-deprived cat that’s bursting with energy. The only outlets for this energy are the cat’s favorite toys and maybe your furniture. The meowing is only the icing on the cake.

Should I Be Worried About This Behavior?

Absolutely not; his behavior is perfectly normal and natural. Your cat is not in pain, anguish, or emotional distress. On the contrary, it’s a sign that your cat is as healthy as can be and is playing out its natural feline instincts. In most cases, all it needs is a little attention.

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How to Stop My Cat From Carrying Its Toy and Meowing

First off, there’s nothing wrong with your cat exhibiting this type of behavior. However, when the meowing gets out of hand, you might want it to stop. Here are some things you can do.

Play With It, for Pete’s Sake!

As mentioned earlier, the primary reason for this behavior is that your cat wants you to play with it. So why not do it? Playing with your cat is a healthy way to bond and nourish your pet-owner relationship. Your cat has already brought its favorite toy over; the ball is now in your court.

If you don’t have time to play with your cat, consider getting automated cat toys. These toys use batteries and will keep your cat busy for hours on end. Oh, and it’ll also stop the incessant meowing.

abbyssinian cat meowing
Image Credit: New Africa, Shutterstock

Get Your Cat a Play Partner

Maybe all your cat needs to tone it down is a play partner. Getting your cat a playmate will instantly divert its attention to its new friend. The cat won’t have time to bother you because it’ll be too busy playing with its new playmate.

However, you need to be extra careful when introducing a new cat into the household. Cats are very territorial, and it might take some time before they get used to new house guests. However, in a few weeks, they’ll be the best of friends.

For cats that make a serious racket at night, it’s nothing but their intrinsic instincts playing out. The only solution is to have them spayed or neutered. However, this doesn’t guarantee that they’ll stop this behavior.

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Final Thoughts

If you’re worried that your cat’s behavior is abnormal, you have nothing to worry about. Given how weird cats are, this is something you should expect. It’s just cats being cats, and scolding them won’t do you any good. Instead, consider playing with it and strengthening the bond you share.

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Featured Image Credit: Christian Bodhi, Pixabay

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