Rusty the Cat: On Boxes

As someone whose watch lists on different streaming services mostly consist of police procedural shows, I have to concede that this post, being the third after Rusty the Cat: On Food and Treats and Rusty the Cat: On Comfort Temperatures, moved the topic over the threshold when it definitely qualifies as serial… I mean, series.

* * *

Do you know that cats love cardboard boxes?

Even though my grandparents had cats with whom I spent my summer breaks in the same house, and despite of the fact that my vSO and I had a cat once (I told this story many years ago – Orange Cats in My Life – Part I: Found and Lost), somehow I had never been privy to that cats’ trait.

I’m not sure why that was: either those particular cats that I observed were not adventurous; or maybe breeds of cats in my native country had different inclinations; or can it be that back then we didn’t have that many boxes in general, and those that we were rarely getting weren’t left out for pets to play?

Whatever it was, the first time I realized that it was “a thing” with cats was when many years ago a friend told me about the famous Japanese cat Maru and shared a couple of YouTube videos of him packing into different boxes, including the tiniest ones (it was years before he was certified by Guinness World Records as the most viewed single animal on YouTube).

And then we got Rusty, who over the years demonstrated to us how much cats love boxes.

Whenever a new box only gets in our house (which these days happens even more frequent than before), Rusty immediately plops himself on top of them. He notably likes wine boxes – probably because they are very steady and safe to jump on and off.



All other boxes are also fair game, especially once they are emptied. Rusty would pack himself into almost any box – be it large, small, tall or shallow.



Usually he stays in a new box for a while, probably until he impregnates it with his scent. After that he loses interest. But there are two boxes that we keep (replacing them from time to time on the same spot), and he uses them for years: one is a box to where he runs and hides when I yell at him for doing something he isn’t supposed to do (like trying to steal meat from a hot frying pan); and the second one is a “Greeting box,” as we call it: it stands facing an entrance door from the garage, and Rusty sits in it when we’re returning home from somewhere (on a picture below it’s a shallower box to the right from the temporary Rusty’s toy).


Rusty in a Box


40 thoughts on “Rusty the Cat: On Boxes

  1. Aww, this post should have a cuteness alert because Rusty looks adorable in all the photos. Was he meowing loudly on that one picture in which his mouth is open?
    My friend says cats are like water, they will fit to container of any shape and size.


  2. Looking at Rusty lowered my bloodpressure tonight after an annoying phone call with my credit card company. Just imagine if I could actually pet him. I’d be super chill. He’s so cute!


  3. Rusty looks as suave as ever. I do love the way cats are compelled to sit in any and all boxes. I guess there must be an instinctual reason but it’s very cute.
    The Greeting box!! !


  4. Such a handsome boy! I have photos of generations of my kitties in or on boxes. I don’t know …. you buy them expensive presents and yet they really love cardboard boxes!!!!


  5. After learning last night that our schools will be remote learning to start the year (we were hoping for a hybrid model), I needed to see Rusty today! He’s so handsome.


    • I’m sorry :( I understand that it might be hard on everybody involved. Let’s hope it all gets resolved soon. Do you have enough space and computers for everyone who needs to work or study at the same time?


  6. Rusty is such a gorgeous boy. Yes, cats adore boxes. My erstwhile Siamese always had to inspect each one, jump in it and then she tried to destroy it, chewing it up. Since that was rather messy, she never got to play with boxes for very long. I see Rusty is a more forebearing sort so he gets to keep his boxes. Such a good boy!
    My fave cat and boxes photo is one of Maru with his 2 front feet barely fitting into a tiny box. He is just sitting with his feet in the tiny box looking so content in that photo! Nala Cat is the new Instagram star and her owner posts photos of her with boxes sometimes, but usually it’s something Nala is being employed to sell.


    • Rusty is nuts when it comes to plastic – so there might be no packing tape or such left on the box, or he’ll eat it. But otherwise he’s fine.

      I like one of Maru’s videos where he inserts his head in a tiny plastic box with the rest of him staying outside.


      • My dear cat Caspie was absolutely OBSESSED with plastic! He would chew and bite anything that was remotely plastic – and he would search for it if you took it away from him. It looked like he really enjoyed the texture of it in his mouth. Unfortunately he got hold of my (new and expensive) glasses once and actually left bite marks in the lenses!


  7. Ooh, thanks for the Rusty series 1 episode 3 😊 love the guilty look in the last picture.
    I was well aware of this fact that cats love boxes, however Vega is the rare sort who actively hates boxes.
    It has made me wonder over the years, if she was trapped or something.


  8. Ah yes, it is standard cat behaviour – they seem to prefer the packaging to an expensive toy or piece of cat furniture you might have bought them in it. I especially love the shot of Rusty caught in mid-miaow, standing on the white box


    • I think he was expressing his disapproval with us paying attention to all those boxes we brought back from our trip to the wine country instead of feeding him (it was still too early for that, but Rusty didn’t want to know that :) ).


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