If you’ve ever lived with cats, you’ve also experienced the zoomies. Even I get them, and I’m pretty much the most placid cat you’ll ever meet.
The term is self-explanatory, but to recap: zoomies are when a cat has a sudden, unexplained burst of energy and races around the room, over furniture, and (figuratively or literally) flies through the air. This lasts for a minute or two, and then just as suddenly it’s over.
Zoomies can happen at any time of day, but most often at dusk or dawn. You may notice it most when it happens late at night because that’s when it will wake you from a sound sleep.
If you’ve ever wondered what causes these crazy bursts of energy, I have some answers for you! Check out the five fast facts below.
- There is actually a technical term for zoomies: Frenetic Random Activity Periods. Now you know why everyone just calls them the zoomies.
- Usually, zoomies are just a momentary release of pent up energy. Cats sleep a lot during the day, especially if their humans are away from home for hours at work. Zoomies are an efficient and fun way to get a needed energy release.
Cats are natural sprinters, so zoomies just come naturally. Domestic cats stalk their prey and save up all their energy for the attack. They are not marathon runners that outlast their targets. When a cat needs to release pent up energy, zoomies just make sense.
- Yes, you actually can lessen the frequency of zoomies. If your cat is knocking things over in their mad dash, or keeping you up at night, chances are they need more activity during the rest of the day. So give it to them! A couple of 10 minute energetic play sessions every day will go far in giving your cat a way to expend energy. Think hunting-type toys like fishing pole and wand toys, and think like prey when you play. Play with them as vigorously as they want, and this will help a lot.
- Zoomies can indicate a medical problem. This isn’t common, but it does happen. If your cat’s zoomies are accompanied by loud meowing, weight loss, overgrooming or biting themselves, or any other unusual behavior, talk to your vet. These zoomies could have medical reasons, such as hyperthyroidism, diabetes, some sort of pain, or a reaction to something they’ve ingested.
- And finally, yes, there is a reason cats get the zoomies sometimes after they poop. There’s something called the vagus nerve, which runs from the brainstem to the colon in both cats and humans. And a good poop can trigger it, sending a jolt of euphoria through your cat’s system. Thus, the zoomies. At least that’s the latest theory. Nobody knows for sure why we cats do this.
I hope you learned a little more about zoomies and cats! If you did, let me know in the comments.
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BellaDharma an BellaSita Mum says
Mee lovess to due Zoomiess around Midnite. An that iss AFTUR wee have played Mousie on a stick or mee feather ball on a stick toy!!
Mee sumtiemss does Zoomiess aftur a nice poop an it DOES feel so guud!!! 😉
An wee leerned tHE offishall name butt Zoomiess iss so much cuter an easyer to meow!
Yore last foto iss GORGEEUSS!
***purrss*** BellaDharma an (((hugss))) BellaSita Mum
Catherine Lingg says
What I read was the “poop” theory. I have noticed it happens when the do any business in the box but mostly the pooping. I read that after a cat in the wild, including big cats, run away frantically because they don’t want other animals to smell where they’ve been. Anyway that’s what I read
I still get the occasional zoomies at 17+. Sometimes I wind up with my teeth wrapped around TW’s ankle.
I always thought the zoomies after pooping was because they wanted to get away from the smell quickly. 🙂
So interesting! Mudpie often gets them after pottying 😉
Tommy & Teaghan says
Wow! Now we have a name for our crazy running around, Zoomies! Thank you for the wonderful explanations. It all makes such sense. It also makes us want to push ourselves to get the Ts to play off some of that unused energy before bedtime. Really thankful for this blog today. XO
I’ve seen this with dogs as well – zoomies. It’s a fun thing
to witness no matter who is doing it. Someone told me about
their cat who would actually get up on the walls and zoom
around the room up on the wall it was going so fast it could
stay on the wall. Never saw that myself.
Good zoomie facts. We love your zoomie photo.
Such interesting facts about zoomies!
As an older kitty I do zoomies too. It keeps me in shape 🙂
Even at 17 years old, I still get the zoomies sometimes!
The Poupounette Gang says
Very interesting, especially #5!
Charles Huss says
Zoomies are a better word. Frankie is the king of zoomies at our house. At 12 years old, I don’t know when he will slow down.
Flynn would have the zoomies every morning when he woke up. He would fly off the bed and into the bathroom, have a quick scat around in the bath and back again with a flying leap onto the bed, then repeat. Eric would lie on the bed watching thinking, yeah whatever.
That was some fast kitty going by there, MOL!
Even our senior kitties would do zoomies, and they seemed to have fun doing it, too.