Interesting Cat Facts
Social gathering? Try these cat facts to get the conversation flowing!
9 Nine Lives
Though cats don’t always land on their feet, nor do they have nine lives, they do have something called a “righting reflex.” Their eyes and the balance organs in the inner ear tell cats where they are in space. This helps them to most often land on their feet and survive falls—in one case more than 30 stories!
Cats: Olympic Athletes In Feline Form
Cats can jump up to six times their height, a distance in excess of five feet.
Photo Viorel Sima/Bigstock.com
Sweet Tooth? Not So Much
Cats, even those that are food motivated, will probably not be tempted by sweet treats. Unlike people and dogs, cats do not have taste receptors for sweet flavours.
Photo Beton studio/Bigstock.com
It’s a Cat’s Life
There’s a reason it’s called a cat nap. Domesticated cats spend about 70 percent of the day sleeping. Another 15 percent is devoted to grooming.
Photo Grisha Bruev/Bigstock.com
Did You Hear That? Your Cat Did
Cats have exceptional hearing. Felines have 32 ear muscles that allow for directional hearing. In contrast, humans only have six ear muscles. Cat ears can rotate independently 180 degrees.
Keep Cats Claws on Their Paws
Declawing cats is illegal in at least 42 countries, including England, France, Wales, New Zealand, Germany, Switzerland, and Israel—but not the United States. In 2019, New York became the first state in the U.S. to outlaw declawing. In Canada, declawing is outlawed in eight provinces—Newfoundland and Labrador, New Brunswick, Alberta, Nova Scotia, British Columbia, Prince Edward Island, Saskatchewan, and Manitoba.
I’m Talking To You
Adult cats typically don’t communicate with each other via meowing. Rather, this vocalization is produced almost exclusively to communicate with humans.
Pass on the Dairy
Cats have classically been depicted lapping from a bowl of milk or cream, but cow’s milk isn’t the best food for most cats as it may cause stomach upset. Try nutrient rich goat’s milk or water instead.
I Hear You, I Just Don’t Care to Respond
Studies show that cats know and recognize their names, but often do not come when called. So, if you think your cat is simply ignoring you, you’re probably right.
Here, Kitty Kitty
Cats respond most readily to names that end in an “ee” sound, which naturally is vocalized in a higher intonation. “A study was done several years ago to show that cats respond to their name much better if the name terminates in a high-pitched sound,” explains veterinarian Dr. Burstyn of Vancouver, BC. “For example, Lancelot ends on a low sound. He’s much less likely to respond [to] that than if we call him Lancey.”
Due to their desert origins, cats evolved to absorb large amounts of water from their urine to stay hydrated. The result? Extra concentrated, extra smelly cat pee.
Ever feel like you and your cat are two of a kind? Research shows that humans and cats share a similar brain structure. The way we process memories, emotions, and the five senses are shared with our feline companions, according to Nicholas Dodman, BVMS, MRCVS, animal behavior chief at Tufts University School of Veterinary Medicine in Boston.
Eye See You
Though they have an acute sense of sight and can see exceptionally well in complete darkness—approximately six to 10 times better than humans can—cats have a blind spot under their nose. They cannot see objects well that are directly in front of them, or under their nose or chins. They also perceive motion better than colour. Cats see mostly blues, purples, and greens, perceiving reddish tones less clearly.
Cats + Boxes, a Love Affair
Is your cat stressed? Give him a box to hide in. Animal experts believe that small, enclosed spaces make cats feel secure and protected. Shelter cats are sometimes given boxes to snuggle in to reduce their stress levels with good reason. A Dutch study divided 14 shelter-intake cats into two groups—those provided with a hiding box and those without. By measuring the cats’ Kessler and Turner Cat-Stress-Score (CSS), the study determined that cats provided with a box were able to recover faster in their new environment. The researchers determined the hiding box was an important enrichment for the cats to cope effectively with stressors in a new shelter environment in the first weeks after their arrival.
I’ll Take A Dozen!
A group of kittens is called a kindle, while a group of fully-grown cats is called a clowder.
Not Just Southpaws
Male cats are more likely to be left-pawed, while females are more likely to be right-pawed. 11 percent of cats are ambidextrous.
According to professors at the School of Veterinary Medicine in UCLA, investigators have found that the sound frequency of purring can “improve bone density and promote healing” in humans and cats.
Do you have a canine friend? Here are interesting dog facts for all dog lovers.