Your digestive system is not all you Really, you’re more
The internet loves cats, and with good reason. These little fuzzballs are fascinating creatures. They fall right side up, they seem to know what you’re thinking half the time, and they just may be up to something suspicious when you’re out of the house. Love them or hate them, these 21 cat facts will help you get into those little kitty minds.
1. Most big cats roar, but do not purr. The cheetah is the only one that purrs and does not roar.
2. There has been a recent fad for breeding domestic cats that look like wild cats, including ocicats, bengals, and savannahs.
3. A group of cats is a clowder.
4. Cats can survive falls from extremely high places, with some estimates putting it at up to 32 stories. Oddly, they don’t do so well with falls between 2 and 6 stories as they need time to right themselves and spread out to slow the fall.
5. In one of the creepier idiosyncrasies, both tabbies and tigers have backward-pointing spines on the middle of their tongues. Why, you might ask? Because it’s useful for breaking and gripping meat.
6. Some research suggests that cats may be able to distinguish their owner’s voice from other people’s. This apparently does not translate into responding or reacting in any way other than a flick of the ears, because what cat would stoop to listen to the petty humans?
7. You may vaguely remember the term bezoar from the first Harry Potter book, but did you know that it’s actually the technical term for a hairball?
8. Cat brains are fascinatingly similar to human ones and have many of the same regions and neurotransmitters that we do. Especially when it comes to the area that controls emotions, our brains are nearly identical.
9. Cats are definitely jumpers: they can jump 5-6 times their body length.
10. Adult cats don’t typically meow to other cats, but they do meow in order to get things from humans. They’ll even change their meow to manipulate you, for example imitating a baby if they need food.
11. Cats might be good about covering their poo, but if they want to show aggression or dominance, especially to mark territory, they’ll leave it uncovered. This usually only happens if there are multiple cats in an area.
12. Next time you can’t tell two cats apart, check their noses. The waves on a cat’s nose are as unique as human fingerprints.
13. You’ve probably always known it, but cats clean themselves to get your smell off them.
14. We’ve all heard of crazy cat ladies, but apparently the stats back it up. Self-identified cat people are 11% more likely to be introverts.
15. While most cats give birth to 4-6 kittens, the largest litter was 19.
16. One of the precipitating events of the Black Death was Pope Innocent VIII condemning cats, leading to the death of thousands of them. Of course, the rat population was pretty happy about this and reproduced rapidly, leading to more disease. This is why we don’t kill cats.
17. Wildcats come in all sizes, and the smallest is the Black-footed cat. They live in southern Africa and on average are between 3 and 5 lbs.
18. Cats have very different eyesight than human beings. They’re capable of seeing better in dim light, but they don’t see color well.
19. Cats have a great deal of control over their ears. There are 32 muscles to control them (humans have 6), and they’re capable of rotating 180 degrees. They can also move each ear independently.
20. Cats spend about 2/3 of their life asleep and of their waking hours they spend about 1/3 cleaning themselves.
21. Siamese cats are born white and develop their points (darker coloring on ears, feet, tail, and face) as they mature. In the 1930s, Russian biologists discovered that when they left kittens in a very warm room, their points didn’t darken.