10 Smells Cats Can’t Resist

When it comes to smells cats love, the funkier the better. Dirty laundry, anyone?

"What is this intoxicating aroma?" Via Ysbrand Cosijn/Thinkstock

Cats have heightened senses, and enjoy smelling all kinds of things, even things we humans think are pretty disgusting. Whatever the case, their noses are usually working overtime, and there are certain odors that seem especially attractive to the feline sniffer.

Here are the top 10 smells cats can’t resist.

10. Anything dead
Like dogs, many cats enjoy whiffing, and then sometimes rolling around on something that’s expired – and I’m not talking about a jug of milk. Outdoor cats have way more opportunities to happen upon a dead bird or chipmunk. Indoor cats wish for those opportunities, but instead settle for No. 9.

9. Invisible, mystery spots
Have you ever noticed your cat obsessing over a mystery spot on a rug or carpet? There’s nothing visible, but they won’t leave the spot alone. They smell it, roll around on it, and sometimes try to cover it … the invisble mystery-thing. I know it’s something in the fibers of the carpet, but it’s just so funny to watch them go nuts over something that looks completely invisible.

8. Another cat’s puke
Another cat’s puke must be incredibly interesting because cats enjoy serious sniffs (and sometimes more) of the stuff. I’ll bet my cats are all, “There’s chicken treats in Phoebe’s puke! I didn’t get chicken treats! No fair!”

7. Dirty laundry
Oh, the colorful bouquet of a pile of dirty laundry! Piles like these are cat magnets. I wonder what kind of dreams a cat would have while sleeping with a soiled sweat sock against his face? It’s probably aromatherapy for them. I’ll take lavender.

6. Breeze
One of my favorite sights is a cat in a window, sniffing the fresh breeze blowing past him. I’m also a fan of a nice breeze, but cats’ noses must break down a variety of smells within the air. They probably smell nearby squirrels, flowers, neighbors cooking dinner, and even the open garbage can in the back alley.

5. Another cat’s behind
I realize cats sniff each other’s rears as a way of communicating and getting to know one another. My cats have known each other for a decade, and they still seem to enjoy a lingering butt-sniff. I suppose it’s nice to become reaquainted now and again. I do with my friends … minus the butt-sniff, of course.

4. Anything we’re eating
If we’re eating it, it must be good. Plus, there’s always the chance of a crumb dropping on the floor.

3. Another animal’s essenceIf I’ve visited a friend and played with their dog or cat, you better believe my clothing is going to get a once-over when I walk through the door. “You’ve been cheating on us.”

2. A cat who’s returned from the vet
Cats returning from a vet’s office are full of many scents, and the other cats must sniff the alien feline from afar in order to identify the odors. Plus, the further away they are while they sniff, the less of a chance they’ll be the next passenger in the Pet Taxi.And the No. 1 smell cats can’t resist is … drumroll, please!

1. Us!
Cats adore us and our natural essence brings them comfort and happiness. Whether we’re wearing dirty or clean clothes, they want to rub their faces all over us, letting the world know we belong to them. And we gladly accept every bit of it… and even grab a cat-huff or two of our own!

Hear all about a cat’s sense of smell >>
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