Why Does My Cat Do Somersaults?

Disclaimer: The information presented below is for general informational & educational purposes only. Always consult with animal professionals in case of specific concerns.

In this blog post, we’ll explore the reasons why cats somersault and unravel the secrets of our furry friends’ fascinating behavior

Have you ever walked into a room and found your cat doing somersaults all over the place? Or maybe you’ve seen videos of cats online effortlessly flipping through their legs. While this behavior may seem random or entertaining, there is actually a reason behind it. As a cat owner, understanding your furry friend’s behaviors can help strengthen your bond and create a more harmonious household. So why do cats do somersaults? In this blog post, we will dive deep into the reasons behind this acrobatic display and give you some insight on what might be going on in your feline’s mind. Get ready to unravel the mystery of cats and their quirky movements!

Why Does My Cat Do Somersaults?

Cats, with their playful and often bizarre antics, are a constant source of amusement and wonder. Your feline friend might be doing somersaults for a variety of reasons:

  • Playfulness: Cats are naturally playful creatures and somersaults can simply be a means of self-entertainment.
  • Hunting Instinct: Somersaults mimic the movements used in hunting. Even domesticated cats retain this instinct, and somersaulting can be a way of practicing these skills.
  • Attention-seeking Behavior: Cats might do somersaults to get your attention. If you laugh or reward your cat when it does a somersault, it may repeat the behavior to get the same reaction.
  • High Energy Levels: Young cats or those with high energy levels often exhibit this behavior. Somersaulting allows them to burn off some of their excess energy.
  • Response to Catnip: Catnip often causes cats to engage in zany behavior, including somersaults.
  • Health-Related Cause: If your cat’s somersaults are accompanied by other unusual behaviors, it could be a sign of a health issue, such as a neurological disorder. Be sure to consult your vet if you have any concerns.

Can Somersaults Be Harmful To A Cat’s Health?

Under normal circumstances, somersaulting is not harmful to a cat’s health. It’s a natural way for cats to express their playfulness, exercise their hunting instincts, or burn off excess energy. However, it’s crucial to observe the context and frequency of these acrobatic feats. If somersaulting becomes excessively frequent, or if it’s accompanied by other signs of distress such as changes in cat eating habits, lethargy, or aggressive behavior, it could hint at underlying health issues. In such cases, a visit to the vet is advisable. Senior cats and those with existing health conditions should also be monitored closely, as the physical exertion from somersaulting could potentially exacerbate their conditions.

Read more: Why Do Cats Flop Over?

Is There A Way To Encourage My Cat To Do Somersaults?

Encouraging your cat to do somersaults can indeed be fascinating, but it’s essential to prioritize your cat’s safety and wellbeing. If your cat naturally does somersaults without any signs of distress, you could encourage this behavior by playing with toys that stimulate their hunting instincts. However, never force your cat into performing somersaults, as this could lead to unnecessary stress or potential injuries. Always monitor your cat during playtime and ensure their behavior remains healthy and voluntary. If you notice any changes in their behavior or health, stop the activity and consult with a veterinarian.

Are There Any Medical Conditions That May Cause A Cat To Do Somersaults?

Certain medical conditions may cause a cat to perform somersaults or exhibit other unusual behaviors. Vestibular Disease, a condition affecting a cat’s balance systems, could potentially lead to somersaulting. It can cause symptoms such as head tilting, stumbling, and abnormal eye movements alongside the unusual acrobatics. Hyperthyroidism, a common health issue in older cats, can cause an increase in energy levels that may result in an uptick in activities such as rolling and somersaulting. Neurological disorders, like cerebellar hypoplasia, can cause uncoordinated movements and may lead to somersault-like actions. If your cat is somersaulting excessively or displaying other concerning behaviors, it is always recommended to consult a veterinarian for a proper diagnosis.


In conclusion, cats are truly fascinating creatures and their behaviors never cease to amaze us. While we may never fully understand why cats do somersaults, it’s clear that these acrobatic acts serve a greater purpose for our feline friends. From practicing important hunting skills to burning off excess energy, somersaults are just one of the many ways cats express themselves. As cat owners, it is important for us to continue observing and studying our beloved pets in order to better understand their needs and behaviors. So the next time your cat does a somersault, don’t be quick to dismiss it as a random act – instead, embrace it as yet another unique quality that makes your cat who they are.