Most cat owners would agree that cats are unique but how well do you really know your cat? What makes her, or him, tick? Here’s a list of the obvious and not quite so obvious traits that make cats so special:
Cats are independent and almost always do things on their own terms. The contrast between cats and dogs in this regard couldn’t be starker.
Cats are playful and need both mental and physical stimulation. As with young children, play is an important means to improve motor skills and coordination, not to mention the positive benefits of simple fun and enjoyment.
Cats are clean animals. They spend hours every day cleaning themselves to ensure that their coats are free from dirt. Their rasp like tongues are extremely effective in cleaning fur and keeping parasites and fleas at bay.
Cats are extremely agile and having places to run, jump and climb are vital to a cats happiness and well-being. Active cats tend to be happy cats.
Cats love to sleep and can spend 12-18 hours a day doing so. A quick cat-nap is never far away but for a deeper sleep, they need to feel safe from disturbance or danger. This is why cats tend to sleep up high and in their own ‘special’ place.
The Not Quite So Obvious
Cats have excellent sensory abilities. They can hear higher frequencies than dogs and their eyesight is better than humans, particularly in low-light conditions. An acute sense of smell is another trump card for our feline friends.
Cats have excellent communication skills even if they’re not immediately obvious to a human. Purring, meowing, hissing, growling and yowling are used in conjunction with a wide-range of body language movements to get their message across.
Cats are expert hunters. We’re sure that many of you would put this into the obvious category but for domestic house cats, hunting can often go unnoticed. Hunting satisfies a natural instinct to stalk prey, where frequently the chase is more important than the prize.
Cats are carnivores and need meat to survive. Whilst many cats are picky eaters, all require a steady intake of meat to thrive. Meat is not just a requirement of taste. It is far more fundamental than that.
Cats are territorial animals and will defend their ‘patch’ with aggression. Their territorialism is focused on other cats only and they have numerous weapons in their armory such as hissing, scratching, spraying and active posturing (making themselves look bigger than they are).