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A Dozen Most Fascinating Facts About Cats
No other animal has the mythology, mystery or superstition surrounding it than a cat. That's because some of the fantastic fantasies about cats are really based on truth.
Here are some of the most fascinating facts we can find about your feline. We will bet that some of them you didn't know.
1. Cats Can Rotate Their Ears 180 Degrees
Yes, that's a weird thing, but it's one of the few animal species that can turn their ears completely around. Dogs have 18 different muscles in their ears, but cats have 30. And, thanks to all those muscles, it's much easier to figure out a cat's mood by their ears.
2. The First Year of a Cat Equals that of a 15 Year Old Human
In terms of development, the first year of a cat's life is equal to the first 15 years of a human life, meaning that the cat is going through adolescence toward the later part of its first year.
The second year of the life of a cat is about nine more years, and after that every year is equal to about four years of a human life, according to animal studies experts.
3. The Hearing of a Cat is Five Times Better than Yours
Speak softly, your cat can hear you. Your cat can hear the faintest of squeaks and peeps and rustling around the house, but their hearing is not as good as a dog's.
Both dogs and cats have a long ear canal, which allows them to hear high pitched sounds a few octaves higher than humans can ever hear.
But, a cat's ear is very fragile, and that's why ear troubles in cats are rather common.
4. The Average Cat Weighs as Much as a Watermelon
You may think you have a fat cat, but the average cat weighs about the same as a good sized watermelon. The males in the larger cat breeds weighs about 20 pounds.
And, that's the weight of a typical Dachshund dog.
5. Cats Can Drink from the Ocean
A cat's survival instinct is so strong that in order to survive, they can drink sea water.
Humans are not able to survive with salt water, but a kitty's kidney can filter out salt and allows them rehydrate by drinking water from the ocean.
6. Cats are the Only Mammal that Can't Taste Sweets
No sugar or spice for your feline, because they don't have a sweet tooth. Cats are the only mammals who have tongues that don't have a taste receptor for sweets.
This gene is missing in cats even though close relatives like a mongoose or hyena have sweet receptors.
So, don't think you'll ever tempt your kitty with a cookie. He's most likely a sour-puss.
7. Cats Have an Extra Organ to Taste Scents in the Air
This is an odd one! Cats have an extra organ that allows them to "taste" — rather than smell — scents in the air. That's why sometimes your cat will stare at you with her mouth open. She's tasting you.
The organ is called a Jacobson organ and it's located in the roof of your cat's mouth. The cat can recognize pheromones or scents with air passing over the tongue and through the organ and to the hypothalamus.
8. Cats Have more Bones than Humans
Believe it or not, a kitty skeleton is not much different from a human skeleton, but a cat has more bones. Cats have 230 bones while humans have only 206.
But, many of the bones are exactly like human bones. However, humans have 12 ribs, and cats have 13. You might say they have a spare rib.
9. Cats Spend Most of their Time Sleeping
You may think your cat is a bit lazy, but frankly it's just his nature. The average cat sleeps 15 hours a day, and some of them sleep 20 hours a day.
Studies show that cats spend 70 percent of their lives sleeping, and if they don't get that much sleep they can be a bit grumpy. And, you don't want a grumpy cat.
Your cat could be oversleeping if he is a bit bored. Yes, cats get bored. That's when you will want to check out some of our Cat Toys or Cat Wands to stimulate your cat to play and be a bit more active during waking hours.
And, they sleep during the day so that they can keep you up at night, when they are most active.
10. Cats Spend up to Half their Awake Time Grooming Themselves
You may think your cat is a bit self-absorbed. Well, that may be true.
Even the short hours they are awake, it seems like they are all about themselves. Studies show that the average cat spends 30 to 50 percent of their time grooming.
Cats are flexible creatures and they like to be clean, so they are able to bend in order to reach the furthest parts of their bodies with their very elastic spines in order to clean themselves.
Your cat's tongue is built like a hair brush to catch loose hairs and a cat licking itself also helps the cat cool down in hotter temperatures.
11. A Cat Can Jump Six Times its Height
The average cat can jump up more than eight feet without a running start. A young, healthy, not-too-chubby kitty can jump six times its height thanks to some strong back leg muscles.
Don't think you can confine a cat to a yard or an area with merely a high fence. If your cat wants to wander, he will.
12. Cats Walk Like Giraffes and Camels
Watch how your cat walks. Both of their front and back right feet will walk first, then both of their left feet. Half of their body will go forward at once, then the other side.
Oddly, only camels and giraffes move like this in the animal kingdom. It's called a "pacing gait" and it means both legs on one side of the body move before the legs on the other side.
Most four-legged animals move by putting their left front leg at the same time their right hind leg steps while the right front leg steps with the left hind leg.
However they go, it seems to work for the stealthy and nimble cat.