Cat Trivia

  • A cat will almost never meow at another cat. Cats use this sound for humans.
  • A cat can be either right-pawed or left-pawed.
  • A cat will spend nearly 30% of its life grooming itself.
  • A cat has four rows of whiskers.
  • A cats ear pivots 180 degrees.
  • A cat will never break a sweat because it has no sweat glands.
  • 95% of cat owners admit they talk to their cats.
  • A cat can jump as much as seven times its height.
  • A cat cannot see directly under its nose. This is why the cat cannot seem to find tidbits on the floor.
  • A cat has approximately 244 bones in its body. A human only has 206 bones.
  • A cat sees about six times better than a human at night because of the tapetum lucidum , a layer of extra reflecting cells which absorb light.
  • A cats arching back is part of a complex body language system, usually associated with feeling threatened. The arch is able to get so high because the cats spine contains nearly 60 vertebrae which fit loosely together. Humans have only 34 vertebrae.
  • A cat uses its whiskers to determine if a space is too small to squeeze through. The whiskers act as feelers or antennae, helping the animal to judge the precise width of any passage.
  • A group of adult cats is called a clowder.
  • A group of kittens is called a kindle.
  • A cats heart beats at 110 to 140 beats per minute, twice as fast as a human heart.
  • A cats sense of taste is keener than a dogs sense of taste.
  • A cats jaws cannot move sideways.
  • A cats tail held high means happiness. A twitching tail is a warning sign, and a tail tucked in close to the body is a sure sign of insecurity.
  • A cats tail plays a vital part in the cats balance and in the righting reflex that allows it to land on its feet after falling from a height.
  • A cats tongue is scratchy because its lined with papillae-tiny elevated backwards hooks that help to hold prey in place.
  • A cats hearing rates as one of the top in the animal kingdom. Cats can hear sounds as high-pitched as 65 kHz; a humans hearing stops at just 20 kHz.
  • A frightened cat can run at speeds of up to 31 mph, slightly faster than a human sprinter.
  • A fifteen year old cat has probably spent ten years of its life sleeping.
  • A large majority of white cats with blue eyes are deaf. White cats with only one blue eye are deaf only in the ear closest to the blue eye.
  • A polecat is not a cat. It is a nocturnal European weasel.
  • A quarter of cat owners blow dry their cats after bathing them.
  • Abraham Lincoln loved cats. He had four of them while he lived in the White House. Abraham Lincolns cat, Tabby, was the first of several White House cats.
  • According to one legend, the “M” marking on the forehead of the Tabby Cat was created by the prophet Mohammed as he rested his hand lightly on the brow of his favorite cat, a Tabby.
  • Adult cats with no health problems are in deep sleep 15 percent of their lives. They are in light sleep 50 percent of the time.
  • After being handled, cats lick themselves to smooth their fur and get rid of the “human” smell. Licking is also thought to produce a calming effect.
  • Ailurophobia is the fear of cats. Julius Caesar, Henry II, Charles XI, and Napoleon all suffered from this and would nearly faint in the presence of a cat.
  • All cats are born with blue eyes.
  • All cats are members of the family Felidea. Interestingly enough, the cat family split from the other mammals at least 40,000,000 years ago, making them one of the oldest mammalian families.
  • Americans spend more on cat food than on baby food.
  • Calico cats are nearly always female.
  • Black cat superstitions originated in America. In Asia and England, a black cat is considered lucky.
  • Catnip can affect lions and tigers as well as house cats. It excites them because it contains a chemical that resembles an excretion of the dominant females urine.
  • Cats are the only domestic animals that walk directly on their claws, not on their paws. This method of walking is called digitigrade. When cats scratch furniture, it isn’t an act of malice. They are actually tearing off the ragged edges of the sheaths of their talons to expose the new sharp ones beneath.
  • Cats bury their feces to cover their trails from predators.
  • Cats can donate blood to other cats.
  • Cats can get age spots. These are black spots on the skin that are often seen around the lips, eyes, and nose; and usually start when the cat is three to five years of age.
  • Cats can see color. Studies have shown that cats can distinguish between red and green; red and blue; red and gray; green and blue; green and gray; blue and gray; yellow and blue, and yellow and gray.
  • Cats have 13 ribs.
  • Cats have a homing ability that uses its biological clock, the angle of the sun, and the Earths magnetic field.
  • Cats have a third eyelid, called a haw, that is rarely visible. If it can be seen, it could be an indication of ill health.
  • Cats have about 100 different vocalization sounds. In comparison, dogs have about 10.
  • Cats can purr as many as 10,950 hours during their lifetime.
  • Unlike other vocalizations, purring can occur when inhaling, exhaling and vocalizing.
  • The purr’s low-frequency vibrations repair bones, relieve pain and promote wound healing.
  • Because cats feel safer when everything smells like them, they deposit scent-filled saliva on themselves and on you.
  • Kittens in the womb acquire whiskers before body hair
  • Cats lap liquids four or five times before swallowing.
  • Except for crunching dry food (and plants), cats do little chewing.
  • Whiskers above the eyes trigger blinking to protect a cat’s eyes.
  • Whiskers behind the front legs help cats land safely and feel for prey.
  • Claws are actually protractable, not retractable as often described, meaning they are normally hidden until the cat extends them.
  • Claws retract automatically to keep them sharp and allow silent stalking.
  • Front claws are typically sharper than hind claws.
  • The domestic cat is the only cat species that can hold its tail vertically while walking.
  • Cats have 473 taste buds and a less refined sense of taste than humans, who have 9,000 taste buds.
  • Cats come in two basic colors, black and red, from which all other colors derive.
  • White is not a color; it hides true color. Many kittens have a spot of color on their heads that indicates their true color.
  • Shoulder blades on the sides of the body and a tiny collarbone permit movement in almost every direction and through tight spaces.
  • Skin on the pads, 70 times thicker than elsewhere on the body, provides further protection.
  • Pads on the forepaws cushion movement, and the single large pad is the prime shock absorber and anti-skid device.
  • When running at full speed, cats are airborne for most of the extended stride, without any paw touching the ground.
  • The tail contains 10 percent of a cat’s bones.
  • Tabby describes a coat pattern, not a color or breed.
  • Tabbies have stripes on their necks, legs and tails and usually have spots on their tummies.
  • Tabbies have alternate bands of light and dark color on each hair.
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