Cats truly are riddles wrapped in mystery inside enigmas. They have roamed the earth before man, which lends to our fascination. The more we learn about them, the more fascinating they become. And perhaps the mysterious and independent attitudes cats display causes them to be the most popular domesticated pet. More people share their home with cats than any other animal.
Perhaps also because of their mysterious ways, cats have been worshipped, feared, thought to be gods and witches’ familiars, and have served as household companions since King Tut was a child.
But What Do You Truly Know About Your Cat?
When your pet rubs its head against your ankle, or traces a crazy eight pattern between your feet as you attempt to walk, does it really mean affection or is it a malevolent attempt to trip you? Probably neither.
According to The Complete Cat Book by Paddy Cutts, the truth is, cats do not demonstrate affection by this maneuver and if they wish to do you harm, it will be with teeth and claws. No, this contact simply allows the cat to mark his or her scent upon you. Cats have glands behind their ears which produce a scent distinctive to each individual cat. With its scent upon you, undetectable by human senses, it means you now belong to the cat – so perhaps that reflects affection or at least acceptance.
Cats Have Unique Physical Abilities
They walk on their toes, can jump five times their own height and the domestic cat is the only species of feline that holds its tail vertically while walking. At their fastest, they can run approximately 30 mph.
They perspire through their feet. They breathe about 20 to 30 breaths per minute with a pulse rate of 130-240 beats per minute. Their normal body temperature remains around 102 degrees Fahrenheit. And, most cats are left-handed — or is that left-pawed?
Paw prints may all look alike, but nose prints – now that’s a cause for identification. The ridges on a cat’s nose are as individual as fingerprints to a human.
Have you noticed your cat apparently hyperventilating after having taken a few minutes to do some intense investigative sniffing? It’s called Flehming. It is found in many mammals. Flehming causes the lips to curl back which allows more chemical aromas to register in the Jacobson’s Organ, situated in the roof of the mouth. Most cats look a bit dotty while doing this.
Cleaning Up Cat Urine
A useful bit of information about cat urine: it glows under black or ultraviolet lights. Black lights can be easily purchased at novelty stores and help you find the puddles and demonstrate after cleaning that the urine is truly gone. Cat urine is highly concentrated and requires an enzymatic cleaner such as F.O.N. (Feline Odor Neutralizer) to eradicate it. Never use ammonia based products as this may encourage the cat to reuse that spot for urination.
Cats’ eyes are distinctive in that they have three eyelids and the eye is so designed that it makes it easier for cats to see in low lights. It is untrue that they can see in total darkness.
Their eyes, in proportion to body mass, are the biggest of any mammal.
If your cat will hold still long enough, count the whiskers framing his mouth – the average number is twelve. Some believe that the number of whiskers reflect the cat’s intelligence. No evidence has been established to support this, but it’s fun to consider.