Celebrating Our Unique Bond With Our Feline Friends
The bonds with our cats and dogs are truly something to behold. Yes, we love dogs too, but we at That’s Cat For truly think there is a little something extra special about the relationship between humans and domestic cats. Keep reading and see which of these human and cat behaviours you and your feline friends share.
1: Cats Exhibit Emotional Bonds With Their Owners
We’ve all heard the jokes that cats only hang out with humans to open their food containers, but the science says otherwise. A scientific study has shown that house cats form strong emotional bonds with their human caregivers. The study concluded that cats showed similar attachment behaviours to both human infants and dogs.
2: Cats Change Their Behaviour According to Human Emotions
Another study found that pet cats will change their behaviour based on the messaging delivered to them by their human parents. It was noted that most cats looked to their humans when presented with an unfamiliar object, known as referential looking. Some also changed their behaviour towards the object depending whether their human gave their cat a positive or negative message regarding the object. I guess they really are listening to us, even though they act so nonchalant.
3: Cats Know the Voice of Their Humans
People have been bringing home cats for thousands of years. At this point, it appears that we have the ability to communicate with them, even if it doesn’t always seem like it! A study in 2013 showed that while cats would eventually start to tune out unfamiliar human voices played to them, they immediately perked up when they heard the voice of their familiar human counterparts.
4: Cats Reduce Negative Emotions in Humans
Nothing can be too terribly wrong when you’re having a good cuddle with your cat, right? It has been shown that cats reduce bad moods but interestingly don’t increase good moods; we need another human to increase good moods. Cats and partners are equally good at decreasing the blues and feelings of seclusion. It wasn’t clear whether a hobby might be just as effective as a cat (or a partner) in alleviating negative emotions. We would prefer to assume cats are superior.
5: People With Cats Handle Stress Better
Okay, this one did also include dogs in the mix, but it appears that pet parents actually handle stress better than those with no pets at home. The study showed that not only did pet parents have lower heart rates and blood pressure, but that those numbers didn’t increase as much under stress of doing math or having their hand immersed in ice water. The study concluded that participants with pets responded to stress better than those compared to participants without pets. The participants’ own descriptions of the meaning of their pets in their lives also implied that cats and dogs can act as social supports.
6: Studies Show Preferring Cats Associated With Higher Intelligence
We left this one for last, not because we didn’t think the dog owners would read this far, but just to take it with a grain of salt. Keep in mind, an association doesn’t PROVE that cat owners are smarter than dog owners. But, a study did find that among 600 participants, people who live with cats, and those who are more drawn to cats than dogs, are reported to have a higher IQ. The study found the “cat people” scored higher intellectually, and were reportedly more “intellectually curious” compared to other study participants. Could just be because we’re always wondering “Why would my cat do that?”.