Five Fun Facts You Didn’t Know About Cats
Cats have been one of the humans' favorite animals and pets for thousands of years. In fact, the oldest known pet cat lived 9,500 years ago! Today, 45.3 American households own cats, making them the second most popular pet in our country.
It's easy to see why so many people love the Felis catus or domestic cats: They're adorable, entertaining, and truly mystifying little creatures. Despite our overwhelming adoration for cats, many of us haven't heard some of the most interesting facts about cats. Below, we'll go over some of our favorite fun facts about cats to get better acquainted with our feline housemates.
Fun Facts About Cats
There are so many fascinating and fun facts about cats that we could probably write an entire book about them. Instead, we'll stick to the top five cat facts that we think you probably haven't heard yet:
1. Your Cat Has a Personality Type
You've probably taken or heard of one of the many personality tests that abound: The Myers-Briggs Type Indicator, Enneagram, and the Color Code are just a few of the common typologies today. But did you know that cats also have personality types?
Two scientific studies have been done on cat personalities, each resulting in five different personality types for our feline friends. The study by Dr. Lauren Finka of the University of Lincoln in England shows the five types:
- The Human Cat — This cat loves its humans and shares its home, life, and personal space with people.
- The Hunter Cat — This cat is the most feral and engages in explicit hunting activity, with both live and toy prey.
- The Cat's Cat — This cat loves its siblings and is often affectionate with other cats.
- The Cantankerous Cat — This cat doesn't like to be handled very much and is sensitive to its environment, touch, and loud noises.
- The Inquisitive Cat — This cat is highly curious and is always sniffing out new people and things.
The other cat personality type study comes from the University of South Australia and rates cats' personalities based on the following five traits:
- Neuroticism (skittishness) — This trait rates how shy, anxious, insecure, and suspicious your cat is of humans.
- Extraversion (outgoingness) — This measures how active, curious, outgoing, vigilant, inventive, and smart your car is.
- Dominance — Behaviors of aggression, bullying, and assertiveness over other cats are hallmarks of this trait.
- Impulsiveness — This appraises how erratic and reckless your cat is.
- Agreeableness — This trait reflects how affectionate, agreeable, and loving your cat is toward humans.
The studies certainly contain some commonalities and overlaps between them. A simple Google search will lead you to countless online tests if you want to see which personality your cat possesses!
2. Cats Have a Unique Way of Walking
Have you ever really watched how your catwalks? If you have, you may have noticed something interesting: One of the most fascinating facts about cats is that cats walk by moving their right front and hind paws at the same time and then by moving their left front and hind paws simultaneously. In other words, they move half of their bodies forward at a time. The only other animals in the animal kingdom to walk this way are camels and giraffes! Take a look at this video to see it in action.
3. House Cats Are Closely Related to Tigers
Fun fact about cats: Your cute little house kitty that you feed, cuddle, and adore shares 95.6% of its DNA with tigers! Scientists found that their DNA diverged about 10.8 million years ago. Tigers are the biggest members of the cat family, and each of its subspecies is, sadly, endangered. However, the discovery of the shared DNA is helping scientists with their tiger conservation efforts.
4. Cats Are Speedy
The average house cat can reach speeds of up to 30 mph when running. That means that if your kitty and Usain Bolt, Jamaica's eight-time Olympic gold medalist and the fastest human alive, raced in the 100-meter dash, your kitty would win; Bolt's speed in the 100-meter dash is 27 mph.
5. Each Cat Has a Dominant Paw
This cat fact is fascinating: Your cat is either right-pawed or left-pawed. That's right, just like us, humans, cats have a dominant paw. Typically, males favor their left paws and females favor their right paws.
Cats are fascinating little creatures, and we hope you enjoyed these five fun facts about cats! To learn more about cats or to discuss the importance of regular veterinary care for your favorite feline, contact us at Forever Vets today!