I was never a cat person. The ones I'd encountered were far too moody and unreliable for my liking. Nevertheless, after the passing of our beagle, Bailey, and a good 5 years for my husband to get over the death of his doggie friend, I was desperate for a pet. I wanted something that would like me even when the kids did not. After much research, I realized that a cat fit our busy schedule far better than a canine. Fate, and our local shelter, eventually led us to a fetching, licking bundle of fur we named Cosy. So, in honor of my “furry baby,” I found some fun, little-known facts about these fascinating felines:
- A cat’s hearing is better than a dog’s.
- A cat rubs against people not only to be affectionate but also to mark out its territory with scent glands around its face. The tail area and paws also carry the cat’s scent. What I find fascinating, however, is that Cosy has marked out this laptop as well as many other household objects.
- Much like fingerprints, the ridges on a cat's nosepad are unique.
- It is a myth that cats are color blind. Studies have shown that felines can see blue, green, and red.
- Indoor cats usually live longer than most dogs. And, while an average life span might be 12 to 14 years, many are reaching 20 years or more. Compare this to the average life span of an outdoor cat which is eight years.
- That “sandpaper feel” of a cat's tongue is actually caused by papillae, tiny elevated backward hooks, that help hold prey.
- Among the foods that should not be given to a feline are: onions, garlic, green tomatoes, raw potatoes, chocolate, grapes, and raisins. And although milk is not toxic, it can cause an upset tummy and gas. Tylenol and aspirin are extremely toxic to cats, as are many common houseplants (for a list of these, click here).
- Cats respond most readily to names which end in the “ee” sound.
- Cats cannot see directly under their noses. That's why they can't seem to find a treat you've dropped on the floor.
- The claws on the cat’s back paws aren’t as sharp as the claws on the front paws because the back claws don’t retract and become worn.
I would still say I'm a dog person, more than a cat aficionado. But to some degree, like people, animals are individuals. We need to have an open mind about each and every one.
Sources for this article included: http://visual.ly/strange-facts-about-cats, http://facts.randomhistory.com/interesting-facts-about-cats.html, and http://healthypets.mercola.com/sites/healthypets/archive/2013/02/22/12-uncommon-cat-facts.aspx.
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