Cats have long held a special place in our hearts and homes, captivating us with their beauty, grace, and at times, mysterious nature.
As much as we adore these beloved feline companions, there is still much to learn about their fascinating characteristics, behaviors, and history.
In this blog post, we dive deep into the world of cats, uncovering mind-blowing and interesting facts that may surprise even the most dedicated of cat owners.
From their incredible night vision to the ancient origins of their domestication, join us on this extraordinary journey to gain newfound appreciation and understanding of these remarkable creatures.
1. Cats have a great sense of curiosity and love to explore their surroundings
More Information: Cats have a great sense of curiosity and love to explore their surroundings. Cats are so curious because they’re super smart and opportunistic by nature.
Curiosity and intelligence are directly linked, and cats are smart. Cats are known for their inquisitive nature and love to explore their environment.
They are also known for their playful nature and love to play with toys and interact with their owners. However, it is important to ensure that their environment is safe and free from hazards that could harm them.
2. Cats have a special way of grooming themselves, where they use their rough tongue to remove dirt and loose fur from their coat.
More Information: Every cat has her own grooming ritual, and they begin grooming themselves at around 4 weeks of age. Cats use grooming themselves to self-soothe and to reduce anxiety.
They often engage in displacement grooming to mitigate feelings of stress, conflict, anxiety, or frustration. A cat may groom to temporarily reduce conflict, frustration, or anxiety, and under these conditions, licking becomes what is called a “displacement behavior”.
3. Cats have a special way of showing affection, where they rub their head or body against their owner.
More Information: This behavior is often a sign of greetings, meaning the cat is happy to see their owner. Cats have scent glands around their cheeks, chin, top of their head, and base of their tail, and when they rub their face or tail against humans, other animals, or household items, they are leaving behind pheromones that they can identify.
Rubbing behavior is learned and passed down from mother to kitten, and it is usually a sign of marking territory, acceptance into the group, and/or greetings and adoration. When cats rub against their owners, they are usually showing affection.
4. Cats have five toes on their front paws, but only four toes on their back paws.
More Information: The extra toes on each front paw are actually dewclaws, which are kind of like thumbs for kitty paws, and they’re located a bit higher up than the other toes.
Most cats have 18 toes, with five toes on each of their front feet and four on the back. However, some cats have an extra toe or even multiple extra toes, and these cats are polydactyl, also known as Hemingway cats.
5. Cats have a flexible spine and no collarbone, which allows them to fit through any opening the size of their head.
More Information: Cats are incredibly flexible due to their anatomy and physiology, and the combination of a flexible spine, free-floating collarbone, and absence of a collarbone gives them the ability to respond very quickly.
Cats’ vertebrae are very flexibly connected and have especially elastic cushioning disks between them, which makes them incredibly flexible. Cats lengthen their spines by alternately extending and flexing, and they have an incredibly elastic spine.
Another feature of cat anatomy that makes them incredibly flexible is their clavicles (collarbones), which are unlike humans, who have long clavicles that limit their range of motion.
6. A cat’s sense of smell is approximately 14 times greater than that of the average human.
More Information: Cats have a larger olfactory epithelium than humans, meaning that cats have a more acute sense of smell. In fact, cats have an estimated 45 to 200 million odor-sensitive cells in their noses, whereas humans only have 10 million odor-sensitive cells.
Scents and smells are incredibly important to cats, and they rely heavily on their sense of smell as they use scents to communicate and gather information. A cat’s sense of smell helps locate prey or danger and can detect movement in low light.
7. Cats have a special way of walking called the “direct register,” where they place their hind paws in the exact same spot where their front paws were.
More Information: they place a hind paw directly where their front paw was in the step before, creating a seamless trade-off between the two. Their hind paws fall inside the place of their forepaws, minimizing noise and leaving less of a trail for predators.
Cats are capable of walking very precisely because, like all felines, they directly register. The reason cats walk this way is one of nature’s perfect designs, and it also assists the cat in surprising prey.
8. Cats can jump about 6 times their own length.
More Information: Cats can jump about 6 times their own length, This means that a cat that is one meter long can jump up to six meters. The average cat can jump around six times their own height, which is measured to their shoulders.
A healthy adult cat can jump approximately five to six times his body length, which is about 8 feet vertically and nearly as far horizontally.
9. Cats can rotate their ears 180 degrees.
More Information: Cats can rotate each of their ears 180 degrees and move them independently from each other to help them work out which direction a sound is coming from.
This allows them to determine the source of even the tiniest squeak, rustle, or movement. Cats have 32 muscles in their outer ear, which is much more than humans, and this anatomy lets them rotate their ears a full 180 degrees.
10 Cats can run up to 30 miles per hour.
More Information: This is the maximum speed of a cat in tip-top shape, and it varies depending on the cat’s age, size, and breed. The average running speed for cats is 30 miles per hour, but not all cats are built the same, and some cats may be faster and more agile than others.
The fastest domestic cat breeds include the Egyptian Mau, the Bengal, and the Savannah, which can reach speeds over 30 miles per hour. In a race against cheetahs and pronghorns, the fastest animals in the world, humans wouldn’t stand a chance, and even the fastest human can’t outrun a house cat.
11. Cats have a great sense of smell and use it to mark their territory and find their way home
More Information: Cats have scent glands in a variety of locations and can use them to mark territory. Felines have scent glands on their cheeks, paws, and flanks, and when they rub against something, they put their own personal scent on that object, leaving the message for other cats that they’ve been there and laid claim. Marking behavior includes scent and urine marking, scratching, rubbing and head bunting, middening, and kneading.
Cats may mark by brushing a person or an object in the household with their cheeks or the top of their tails, both of which contain scent glands. Additionally, cats use their sense of smell to find their way home if they become lost.
12. Cats have a special way of communicating with other cats, where they use body language like tail flicks and ear movements.
More Information: Body language is the primary way that cats communicate, and they are constantly communicating their feelings and intent with humans and other animals by using their primary communication method body language.
Cats rely on many forms of communication, including sounds and body language, to get their messages across. Cats need to communicate with each other for bonding, relating with each other, collaborating, playing, and sharing resources.
Understanding feline body language can give additional insight into how cats communicate. Cats communicate in many different ways, and sometimes these behaviors can appear strange at first glance.
13. Cats can make over 100 different sounds, while dogs can only make about 10.
More Information: Cats can make over 100 different sounds while dogs can only make about 10. However, cats are capable of hearing much higher-pitched sounds of up to 1.6 octaves above the human range, and one octave above the range of a canine.
14. Cats sleep for an average of 16 hours a day.
More Information: this number can vary depending on the cat’s age and activity level. As they grow older, a majority of cats sleep for more hours each day than they did in their younger years.
Cats have a polyphasic sleep pattern, which means they sleep multiple times each day rather than in one long period, like humans generally sleep. These cat naps average 78 minutes in length.
15. Cats can’t taste sweet things.
More Information: Researchers have discovered that cats lack some of the proteins needed to create the gene that helps the body taste sweets. Cats only have about 500 taste buds and lack the protein to appreciate sweets.
It appears that they can taste all the other things that humans can. However, some cats do like marshmallows, ice cream, and other sweets, but they are tasting something different than humans do, and they may like these foods for different reasons.
16. cats remember specific events or experiences.
More Information: Cats have long memories, especially for events and experiences that have had an emotional impact on them. Cats even have different types of memories, such as episodic or spatial memory, just like humans and dogs.
Certain episodic memories can last months and often years, and studies show that a cat’s long-term memory may last as much as 200 times as long as a dog’s. However, cats are highly selective about what they remember.
The findings show that cats can remember traumatic experiences, and remembering such events can have a lasting effect on their physiology and behavior.
17. Cats have a unique nose print, just like humans have unique fingerprints
More Information: Every cat’s nose has its own pattern of bumps and ridges, and no two cat nose prints are alike. They could be used as a form of cat identification, if cats would sit for inking their nose and stamping it on a piece of paper.
18. Cats have a special reflective layer in their eyes called the tapetum lucidum, which helps them see in low light conditions.
More Information: Cats have a special reflective layer in their eyes called the tapetum lucidum, which helps them see in low light conditions. The tapetum lucidum reflects visible light back through the retina, increasing the light available to the photoreceptors.
This allows cats to see better in the dark than humans. The feline tapetum lucidum is special because its reflective compound is riboflavin, a type of vitamin B. Riboflavin has unique properties that amplify light to a specific wavelength that cats can see well, which greatly increases the sensitivity of the retina to low light.
However, animals with a tapetum lucidum sacrifice some visual acuity for their ability to see in dim light.
19. Cats have a great sense of balance and can even walk on narrow surfaces like fences.
More Information: Cats have a great sense of balance and can even walk on narrow surfaces like fences. A cat’s tail helps it to balance, particularly when they are walking or running along a narrow surface such as a fence, or when they are jumping.
In fact, to determine whether the tail of the domestic cat plays a role in balance during locomotion, four cats were trained to traverse a narrow beam. However, it is important to note that elderly cats should be encouraged to use secure or wider surfaces for sleep.
20. Cats have a special way of communicating with humans, where they meow to get our attention.
More Information: Cats have a special way of communicating with humans, where they meow to get our attention. When speaking to their owners, cats employ a handful of distinct cat language sounds, including purr, hiss, howl, chirp, and, of course, meow.
However, cats rely on many forms of communication, including sounds and body language, to get their messages across. Felines communicate with their peers through vocalizations, physical contact, visual cues, and chemical cues.
21. Cats are obligate carnivores, which means they need to eat meat to survive.
More Information: Cats are obligate carnivores, which means they need to eat meat to survive. An obligate carnivore is one that depends entirely on meat because their diet requires nutrients that are only found in animal flesh.
Cats get certain key nutrients from meat, including taurine, arachidonic acid, vitamin A. As such, a cat’s ideal diet is made up mainly of protein and fats derived from small prey such as rodents, birds, and small reptiles and amphibians.
Although cats can digest plant material safely, they are unable to meet all of their nutritional needs from a plant-based diet.
22. Cats have a great sense of touch and use their whiskers to navigate in the dark.
More Information: Cats have a great sense of touch and use their whiskers to navigate in the dark. Whiskers are extensions of the cat’s skin and are designed to detect even the smallest vibrations, which helps cats to navigate in the dark and to determine whether they can fit through a small space.
A cat’s sense of touch is enhanced by long whiskers which protrude from their head and body and sets of paw pads which adorn the bottom of their feet.
A cat’s whiskers are very sensitive to the slightest touch and are used for monitoring the environment and are used in a friendly greeting.
23. Cats have a special way of hunting, where they use their sharp claws and teeth to catch prey.
More Information: Cats begin their hunt by stalking their prey from a hidden spot, carefully watching their potential prey. This involves the cat being in a crouched position, head down, and tail twitching. Cats typically approach hunting with stalking methods, moving very slowly with their head outstretched. When they are ready to pounce, they use their sharp claws and teeth to catch their prey. Chasing, stalking, pouncing, and swatting are all employed by cats when hunting. It is important to note that while hunting is a natural behavior for cats, it can be problematic when they hunt wildlife or bring prey into the home.
24. Cats have a great sense of hearing and can hear sounds that are too high-pitched for humans to hear.
More Information: Cats rely on acute hearing as an essential part of their hunting arsenal. Cats can hear a mouse squeaking underground or a cockroach scurrying inside.
A cat’s sense of hearing is most sensitive to sounds of around 8,000 Hertz (8 kHz), and they can also hear up to 64 kHz, which is 1.6 octaves above the upper limit of human hearing.
As with their sense of smell, cats have a very advanced sense of hearing, and they make good use of their large, perky ears. Cats can hear thanks to their ears, the most visible part, and the internal auditory structure, which humans cannot see.
25. Cats are crepuscular, which means they are most active during dawn and dusk.
More Information: Domestic cats are considered to be crepuscular because they’re most active during the hours of dawn and dusk, which are low light hours. While humans are diurnal, or active during the daytime, cats are raring to go at both dawn and dusk.
This biological category describes animals that are most active during twilight hours. Because cats are crepuscular, they conserve their energy for these twilight hunting periods. Cats are more active at dusk and dawn, and they are really good at seeing in darker lighting.
26. Cats have a unique way of drinking water, where they use their tongue to scoop the water up and into their mouth.
More Information: Cat use their tongue to scoop the water up and into their mouth. The liquid sticks to their tongue thanks to adhesion, much like water sticks to your own hands when you touch it, and the water molecules also get trapped by the backward-facing barbs on the tongue.
Cats enjoy drinking fresh, flowing water, and they don’t voluntarily drink water like a dog would. Despite being good for them, many cats don’t like drinking water, especially if it’s still or standing water.
This dislike for water can lead to a dehydrated cat, which can cause health problems. You can give your cat a refreshing sip from a dripping faucet, or you can purchase a cat drinking fountain to make drinking water more appealing.
27. Cats have a third eyelid called the nictitating membrane, which helps keep their eyes moist and protected.
More Information: The nictitating membrane is located in the corner of each eye towards the center of the face and is usually retracted and not visible. This membrane provides protection and moisturization of the eyes. Certain situations can cause the third eyelid to protrude and partially cover the eyeball.
The nictitating membrane may also appear as a symptom of feline upper respiratory virus or conjunctivitis. This membrane serves several important functions, including keeping the eye moist and protected.
28. House cats share 95.6% of their genetic makeup with tigers.
A study published in 2013 found that our pet cats share 95.6% of their genome (DNA) with the Amur tiger. The tiger shares 96% of its genes with the house cat. The DNA of an African white lion and white Bengal tiger revealed that both cats’ pale coats are due to mutations in a gene that also gives some house cats their white coats.
29. Cats have an extra organ that allows them to taste scents.
The Jacobson’s organ is primarily used for analyzing pheromones from other cats, but it can also detect other scents in the environment. Cats rely heavily on their sense of smell as they use scents to communicate and gather information, and they have special scent glands right across their body.
When a cat wants to taste a scent, it opens its mouth and inhales the air, which carries the scent to the Jacobson’s organ.
30. The oldest known pet cat existed 9,500 years ago.
More Information: Oldest known pet cat was found in Cyprus. The Stone Age cat appears to have been carefully placed alongside a human corpse, along with offerings including jewelry and stone tools.
Until then, historians thought the ancient Egyptians first domesticated cats about 4,000 years ago, but evidence suggests cats were culturally important outside Egypt long before that. The oldest cat who ever lived was named Creme Puff, who passed away aged 38 years and 3 days. The oldest living cat is Flossie, who is nearly 27 years old.
In conclusion, our furry friends never cease to amaze us with their incredible attributes and peculiar quirks. Whether you’re a lifelong cat lover or simply looking to broaden your knowledge, these remarkable facts are sure to deepen your connection and appreciation for these enigmatic beings.
By understanding the rich history, intelligent behaviors, and awe-inspiring abilities of cats, we can strengthen the bond between feline and human, ensuring that we continue to cherish these magnificent creatures for generations to come.
The highest recorded jump by a domestic cat is 11.5 feet or 3.4 meters. This was a straight vertical jump, and it was measured and recorded. However, the longest jump by a cat is 213.36 cm (7 ft) and was achieved by Waffle the Warrior Cat (USA), in Big Sur, California, USA, on 30 January 2018.
Cats have more ear muscles than dogs, with 32 muscles in each ear. These muscles allow cats to move their ears independently of each other and rotate them up to 180 degrees. The ear muscles of cats are also more developed than those of other animals, allowing them to hear better and more accurately locate the source of a sound.
The most common sound is the meow, which can have different meanings depending on the tone and pitch. Other sounds include chirrups, hisses, purrs, chatters, growls, howls, and yowls. The purr is a low-pitched, breathy vibrating sound that cats make in a wide variety of forms and situations. Hissing is a warning sound that cats make when they are angry or fearful and feel threatened. Chattering or clicking is a quiet, fast-paced sound that cats make when they see birds or other animals outside. Cats can also make sounds that are part of mating behavior, such as yowling and caterwauling.