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Things We Have Recently Learned About Cats

November 1, 2021

Cats are known for being both quirky and mysterious. Scientists have typically had a hard time understanding kitty traits and behaviors, in large part because cooperating in studies is not one of Fluffy’s strong suits. However, a few recent studies have uncovered some interesting things about our mysterious feline friends. A local vet lists some key ones below.

Yes, Fluffy Loves You

We love to joke about how calculating and cold cats are, but that’s really not true. A study done in 2019 showed that our feline friends really do form attachments with their humans. The study observed 70 cats, who were put in a room for two minutes with their owners. They were then left alone for two minutes, after which their owners returned. The kitties showed signs classified as demonstrating ‘secure attachment’ to their owners, according to researchers. Of course, this is old news to anyone with an affectionate feline!

In Fact, Fluffy Loves You More Than Food. Sorta.

Another study of kitty behavior examined whether cats would choose food over attention. The results were surprising, indeed! This study, done in 2017 by Oregon State University, tested both shelter cats and pet kitties. The felines were given a choice of what they wanted to do: play, hang out with humans, or eat. Most of the cats chose to interact with the humans. Food was the second choice.

Fluffy Does Know Her Name

This study, from 2019, followed 78 kitties to see if they reacted in any way when their names were called. As researchers watched (and listened) cat owners said five words: the kitty’s name, and the remaining four were generic, similar-sounding words. In a variation, they had strangers tell the cats the same words. It just happened that Fluffy did respond differently when she heard her name. And of course, this also means that yes, sometimes your furry pal does ignore you when you call her.

They’re Good For Us

It may surprise you to hear that people with kitties tend to have better mental health than those who don’t have feline pals. The companionship, comfort, affection, and, of course, live entertainment kitties provide is actually very good for us! Other benefits include lower hypertension, less anxiety, and better sleep. Fluffy may very well be the purrfect pet!

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