Cats are a marvel and a mystery. We have so much more to learn about these small creatures, as they possess some phonomenal abilities. In this post, you will read about just a few of the amazing facts about cats that perhaps you did not know.
Are You A Migraine Sufferer? Get A Cat
If you have a migraine and lie down to rest, your cat may join you. The cat, in fact, seems to know when the owner does not feel well. So, the cat will begin to purr while lying at your side, and that steady purring rhythm helps remove the pain of the headache.
The cat’s presence will also help to lower blood pressure and relieve stress. He could be called “medicine in a fur coat.” You may find your migraine slowly easing away as you relax and listen to the calming purr.
How Well Does Kitty Hear?
Did you realize that a cat can hear 1.6 octaves above the range of a human? He can also hear a whole octave above that of a dog. A cat hears sounds up to 65,000 hertz, and having the cone-shaped ears on top of the head funnels in the sounds.
Those ears can swivel up to 180 degrees, picking up sounds and movements up to five times farther than we humans. The cat can even hear electrical current! Because of their location atop the head, kitty can pinpoint the exact location of a sound.
The few creatures on earth with a better sense of hearing includes bats and some insects.
A Powerful Sense Of Smell
Don’t you find it amazing that you might have no idea of the cat’s location, but if you open a can of food or a treat, they magically materialize at your feet? Mocha appears when I remove the bag of grated cheese from the fridge, even though I saw him earlier, asleep in the next room.
The cat has 40 times more odor-sensitive cells than we have in our human nose. With this powerful sense, they can pick up a great deal of valuable information. They don’t have to see it if the nose detects it first.
Also, kitty has a structure in the roof of the mouth called the “vomeronasal organ”. This small bit of equipment allows kitty essentially to taste what they smell. If you see your cat holding his mouth open, he may be processing scents that give him information about what is around him.
A Kitty Tool For Anxiety
Perhaps you have noticed that your cat licks his coat when nervous, afraid, or anxious. He may feel the need to calm himself. The tongue has a covering of papillae, which are tiny projections on the surface which point backwards.
These papillae are made of the same stuff as your fingernails. It’s called keratin, a very tough and abrasive substance. If your cat has ever licked you, you know that it feels like you’ve just been rubbed with sandpaper. Thus this tongue becomes very effective for cleaning the fur.
After an unpleasant incident, such as confrontation with a cat enemy, kitty will lick himself vigorously. This action calms them and allows them to settle down after an uncomfortable incident. Therefore, if kitty licks you, accept the gift. It’s merely a friendly, calming gesture.
Cats Possess Many More Bones Than Humans
The cat has many more bones than we do; in fact, up to 11% more. While a human skeleton contains 206 hones, the cat has 250. The many extra bones of the cat reside in the tail. The backbone extends into the tail, giving kitty more flexibiity.
This tail alone has 19 to 23 vertebrae, or about 10% of the bones in the body.
Praise For The Powerful Paws
Your kitty’s paws have a couple of important special functions. First of all, if you live in a hot climate and have seen wet paw-prints on your floor, rest assured your kitty has not been wading. Instead, he’s sweating! When he overheats, in this manner he secretes his sweat.
I’ve often wondered how a cat can fall a great distance, land on his feet, and not suffer from injured feet. It turns out that the paws act as shock absorbers. The outer layer of skin on kitty’s paw pads grows considerably thicker than skin elsewhere on his body.
The large pad located on the back of his front paw often serves the purpose of helping the cat brake after leaping forward. Besides that pad, the other footpads act as shock absorbers to cushion the cat’s landing when he falls from a great height.
Can Cats Really See In The Dark?
Cats cannot see in total darkness. However, they only need one-sixth of the amount of light that we need for clear vision. With this small bit of light, the cat can hunt extremely well at night. The iris in the eye opens wide, helping them utilize the availble light.
During the day, a cat can’t see as well as a human, because the eyes has closed to a slim slit. Though they can see some colors, most likely their vision is a bit blurry during the day.
Small cats, unlike tigers and lions, which have round pupils, have vertical slit pupils and this feature makes them ambush hunters. The pupil shape allows for quick changes in light and great accuracy in gauging distance before pouncing on the prey.
The cat has something called the “tapetum lucidum” behind the retina. It is made up of reflective cells, which is why your cat’s eyes glow in the dark. This layer allows the cat to hunt at night without carrying a flashlight — he has one built-in.
A Multipurpose Tail
As you are most likely aware, a cat speaks a great deal with his tail. Position and movement all have their own meaning, and can help you interpret what the cat is thinking. If that tail is upright when the cat approaches you, it’s a friendly sign. If wagging, not so good.
The tail also helps kitty with balance. When climbing a tree or clinging to a precarious perch, he may use that helpful tail as a gymnast might use a balance pole. Perhaps he gives chase to some other animal, and the tail helps him navigate rapidly around a sharp corner.
The Tip Of The Iceberg
These represent just a few of a cat’s amazing abilities. You will find out about a few more if you read through our references. Also, you can gather more stories from some of the other posts on this website. In years to come, scientists will add more data about the cat’s abilities, I’m sure.
References I used for this post: