Gift or Threat: Interpreting What Your Cat Brings You

If my cat JoJo brings me a milk-cap ring, I know it’s because he wants to play fetch. He’s weird like that, because he’s a Bombay and that’s how they roll. Some cats though, are far more mysterious. That means the gifts they present their humans might be a bit harder to interpret. Keep in mind too, cats are sinister and devilish at times—so those “gifts” might actually be warnings—warnings you should ignore at your own peril.


If your beloved feline friend brings you a fish, it probably means one of two things. Either they are displeased with the quality of food you’ve been giving them, or your neighbor’s koi pond is too tempting to resist. A fish is one of those cat-presents that takes the pressure off you. By the time you find it, it will be an ex-fish. There will be no question of whether or not you should “nurse it back to health.”

Deadly Snake

Often when a kitty brings you a dead or dying animal, they’re sharing their kill with you. If they bring you a poisonous snake like this one (red to yellow kills a fellow!), you can be pretty sure your cat loves your home so much they fully intend to take it from you after your untimely death by snakebite. Maybe adjust your will to leave everything to the dog?

Rat (dead)

Ever see the movie, Willard? It’s about a guy who uses rats to smite his enemies. If your cat brings you a dead rat like this one, they’ve clearly saved you from Willard and his terrible gnawing antics. Thank them with a treat!

Rat (alive)

Sorry, but if your cat treats rats like this, you are most likely doomed. A live rat is a sign either your pet was too lazy to go in for the kill, is not as tough as a large mouse, or your fluffy pal is hoping the rat will end you. Run for your life!


I’ve heard cats occasionally bring their humans baby bunnies. Personally, I can think of few things more nightmarish than this hellish paring. Cats have nine lives and bunnies breed like…well, you know. Together, they could lay waste to humanity faster than Climate Change and Bacon-Wrapped Pizza combined.


There could be any number of reasons your feline buddy might bring you an owl. Maybe they hate the mailman and want you to use a more magical mail service. Maybe they need to know how many licks it takes to get to the tootsie roll center of a tootsie pop. Most likely though, they feel like having some intelligent conversation for a change. And no animal looks more wise and chatty than an owl.


As Sex in the City has taught us, a squirrel is just a rat in a cuter outfit. Still, it’s hard not to be a little bit sad when your cat kills something adorable. Maybe you raised your pet to be a bloodthirsty monster. But that squirrel might have been plotting to steal your identity. Before you scold your cat for killing a squirrel, check your bank statement for errant charges of acorns or tiny hats.


What’s the craziest thing your cat has ever brought you? Have you ever rehabilitated an animal your cat brought to you?

Additional Image: Catster



Wednesday Lee Friday
Wednesday Lee Friday
Wednesday Lee Friday was born November 24th, in Royal Oak, Michigan. It was a Tuesday. After deciding against being a ballerina, an ichthyologist, and a famous singer, she decided to become a novelist just before starting kindergarten. Wednesday went to college in Olivet, Michigan where she majored in theatre and broadcasting for some reason. Wednesday Lee Friday is a four-time published novelist, podcaster, horror fan, and former phone sex gal. Wednesday eats true crime for breakfast, knows enough Dothraki to buy a horse, and is a Simpsons Superfan. Look for her novels, anthologies, and audiobooks wherever you usually buy those things.