Cats are considered today the most popular pets in the U.S. because their raw population easily outnumbers the dog population by a couple of millions.
However, even if the cats are so popular among Americans, there are many cat owners who don’t know much about these tiny and cute felines.
Interesting Facts About Cats
Cats seem to be very interesting animals, and much more complex than we thought.
1. Cats Only Meow At Humans
It seems that cats behave like kittens only when they are trying to communicate with people, because when interacting with other animals, they only spit, hiss and purr, but they never meow.
Cats also greet each other by touching noses.
2. They Could Suffer From Feline Acne
Cats could end up developing blackheads on their chins, and this is associated with feline acne.
3. Cats Can Easily Cope With Heat
Being animals that basically evolved in the desert, cats can cope pretty well in extreme heat conditions.
However, if their body temperature reaches extreme levels (or when are frightened), cats can start secreting sweat through their paws.
4. Cats Have Been Domesticated About 9,500 Years Ago
According to Wikipedia, the oldest known indication for a domesticated African wild cat was found close to a human grave in southern Cyprus (Shillourokambos), dating about 9,200 to 9,500 years ago.
What is more interesting here is the fact that there is no evidence of a native mammalian fauna in Cyprus (in that period of time), which could only mean that the inhabitants of the Shillourokambos village most likely brought the cat and maybe other tamed wild mammals from the Middle Eastern mainland.
5. They Need To Interact With Humans From An Early Age
All domestic cats need to interact with humans from a pretty early age (about 2 weeks old) to become sociable toward people.
That period of time can be extended up to the age of 16 weeks.
However, after the age of 16 weeks, is almost impossible to domesticate the cat.
6. Cats Can Make Up To 100 Different Sounds
We know that cats can purr and meow when they interact with people, but it seems that they use a different group of sounds when interacting with other animals (including other cats).
7. When A Cat Turns 2, It Turns 22 In Human Age
The first year in the life of a cat equals to the first 16 human years.
When a cat turns 2, it actually turns 22 in human years.
From the age of 2 and up to the age of 20, we are adding 4 human years of every cat year.
After the age of 20, we will add 8 human years to every cat year, which means that a 30-year old cat has the same age like a person who is 134 years old.
8. Cats Spend 66 To 70 Percent Of Their Life Sleeping
Cats love to sleep especially during the day, and they can be more active during the night.
However, because cats prefer to spend about two-thirds of the day sleeping, a 12-year old cat was actually active only about 4 years in its entire life.
9. A Group Of Kittens Is Called A “Kindle”
A group of newborn kittens is called a “litter” (like any random group of baby animals).
However, to be more specific, we can use the term “kindle” to name a group of kittens, and the term “clowder” for a group of adult cats.
10. We Use Different Names For Female And Male Cats
A male cat is called a “Tom” or a “Tomcat” (Gib if neutered), while a female cat that is not pregnant is called a “Molly”.
If a female cat is pregnant, we call it a “Queen”.
11. Cats Like To Be Clean All The Time
Cats spend everyday about 20 minutes cleaning themselves in the first hour after waking up.
And one of the reasons why they cats clean themselves up so often, is to get rid of the human scent (the scent of its owners).
12. Your Cat Considers You Her Property
When your cat rubs against you from nose to tail, it only marks you with her scent, and this means that she wants to mark you as one of its properties.
13. Cats Have A Very Special Sense Of Smell
Compared to humans, a cat’s smell is about 14 times greater than the average human smell.
14. Cats Can’t Taste Sweetness
Scientists believe that cats have no receptors for sweetness because being carnivorous animals, they suffered a mutation over time in their key taste receptor, so they are not able today to taste sweet foods.
15. Their Stomach Is Quite Sensitive
The lack of ability to taste sweetness is also in their benefit because cats have a pretty sensitive stomach.
Besides sweet foods, you should avoid feeding them: green tomatoes, garlic, onion, chocolate, grapes or raisins.
16. Cow Milk Is Not Very Good For Cats
Despite the general belief that cats drink milk, it seems that cow milk could upset their stomach.
Goat milk is much better for cats and dogs, and is actually considered a superfood for them.
17. Cats Are Much Smarter Than You Think
You know that your cat knows her name very well and understands you when you call her using that name, but she may choose just to ignore you?
18. Exactly Like People Or Other Animals, Cats Have Belly Buttons
It seems that cats have belly buttons too, but they simply look different than ours.
Is not so easy to find your cat’s belly button, but is usually located about two-thirds of the way down her belly.
19. Black Cats Have Nothing To Do With Bad Luck
If in the United States, we consider that a black cat can bring bad luck, in other countries on the planet (the U.K., France and some countries in Asia), they are considered as messengers of prosperity and happiness.
20. Cat Whiskers Are Not There Just To Make Them Very Cute
A cat’s whiskers are covered in numerous nerve cells and blood vessels, and their role is to help the cat detect very quickly any changes around them, and whether they can fit in certain spaces because the width of their whiskers is about the same with the width of their body.
21. Your Cat Doesn’t Like The Music That You Listen
If you like to listen music in the house where you live with your cat, be sure that your tiny feline can’t stand the sound of it.
However, there is a certain music (actually a special album created by composer David Teie along with animal scientists) that cats seem to love.
22. A Cat Called Stubbs Was The Mayor Of A Small Town In Alaska (Talkeetna) For Nearly 20 Years
In 1997, a little ginger kitten that had no tail (Stubbs) was elected as the Mayor of a small Alaskan town called Talkeetna.
Stubbs remained in office almost 20 years (up to 2016 when it died).
23. Cats See About Six Times Better In The Dark Than We Do
Exactly like dogs or other animals with night view, cats have a special reflective layer behind their retina (tapetum lucidum), which allows them to see much better in the dark or in low light than we do.
24. A Cat’s Heart Beats Way Faster Than Ours
A cat’s heart beats 110 to 140 times per minute in normal conditions, but it can reach 220 beats per minute if the cat is frightened or in a high alert.
25. A Tabby Cat Named Dusty Is Known As The Queen That Gave Birth To The Largest Number Of Kittens
During Dusty’s breeding life, she managed to gave birth to a number of 420 kittens.
Dusty can be found in one of the editions of the Guinness World Records.
26. Are Cats Smarter Than Dogs?
A cat’s cerebral cortex seem to contain a number of 300 million neurons, while a dog’s cerebral cortex contains only about 160 million neurons.
27. Cats Can Give Birth To Identical Twin Kittens
Even if it’s pretty rare, cats can give birth to identical kittens, and this happens when two kittens come from the same egg.
28. Cats Have Three Times Finer Hearing Than We Do
Humans have 12 muscles in their ears, while cats have 32.
This allows the cats to rotate their ears 180 degrees, and also to hear about three times better than we do.
29. Cats Can Show You Very Quickly Who Is The True Head Of The House
The natural instinct of a cat tells her to cover its poop, however, if the cat does not bother to do it, it only shows you that she is the true boss in the house and not you.
30. Felicette Was The Name Of The First Cat That Flew Into Space
In 1963, a cat called Felicette was sent into space during the French space program.
During the space trip, the scientists have monitored the cat’s neurological signals by implanting electrodes in her brain.
Luckily, the cat survived the trip and become the first cat that went to space.
Experts consider that living with a cat can help the owner to get rid of stress, anxiety and depression.
The lack of stress keeps your blood pressure at lower levels and protects your heart from possible problems, including a stroke.
If you want to become happier, just get a cat, and you don’t need to buy one, you can simply adopt one.