Above: Bengal cat KOPA dancing balletically while being photographed. Photograph Helmi Flick
Please note: this page is more than about plain facts. There is plenty of opinion. This page has a narrative that includes links and there are just free standing links. The truth is that the whole site is choc-a-bloc full of facts so this page is just a reservoir for some more.
Cat Facts – Contents
Are Cat Facts, Facts? There is often good reason to avoid so called ‘cat facts’. There are many websites that confidently proclaim a pile of cat facts without source reference but how accurate are they? Here are two examples. The www.xmission.com website says that the Maine Coon is,”America’s only natural breed of domestic feline…” I think this is incorrect.
The Maine Coon was imported into America as a long haired Angora type cat with the pilgrims and developed from that start (MC history). The American Shorthair had a similar start being developed from shorthaired cats that came with the pilgrims so it can claim the same distinction (see its history). Although it has to be admitted that even these are not necessarily “fact”. It may be the case that the Vikings brought over the forerunner to the Norwegian Forest cat thousands of years earlier! So fact is more about opinion and conjecture.
The same site says that the Maine Coon cat is, “4 to 5 times larger than the Singapura…” This is also untrue, in my opinion. The Singapura is the world’s smallest cat breed, yes, and the Maine Coon is the largest non-wildcat hybrid cat breed. But the Singapura weights about 6.5 lbs on average and the Maine Coon weighs about 15.5 lbs on average. On that basis the Maine Coon is 2.4 times heavier and therefore almost certainly not 4-5 times larger.
There are no definitive statistics available on purebred cat size. Size is compared through measurement of weight. I could go on and on. For this reason I also express some opinion on this page and in the linked pages. There is another reason to be cautious with cat facts. Quite a lot of information is in a state of flux. Examples of topics in the cat world that are unsettled and evolving are:
These are just some illustrative examples.
For the sake of completeness I set out below some cat facts that are generally agreed to be true facts. I would say that these are mostly “given” meaning accepted and therefore I do not provide sources but there are links to more.
Human Behavior Intersects with Cat Behavior
This is more opinion than cat facts. Lets start with some difficult stuff. I stick my neck out and speculate on the philosophy behind the eating of cat meat
The Vatican, through the Pope, made an interesting announcement regarding the updating of the mortal sins mentioned in the Bible. They extended them to include animal cloning: Cat Cloning is a Mortal Sin.
Pets and cats can be used as a fashion accessory
I know this is probably unpopular with some and definitely with cat breeders but sometimes we, as humans, let the less good aspects of our nature get the better of us. This can happen in selective cat breeding. Even the work of Jean Mill
Some argue that there are enough cats. This feeling is particularly prevalent in the USA. The cat associations
The feral cat problem is worldwide and in the United States there is an urgent need for co-ordinated action to resolve it properly. Feral cats have a hard life
for the purposes of survival, which in part is the reason for the large feral cat population. Although there are misrepresentations about how fast cats breeds. This helps to fuel the conflict between cat and bird conservationists.
If you have considered the idea of showing your cat you might like to read this.
Cat’s eyes are modified to see more effectively in low light and reflect light back to the retina to enhance the image. On a more positive note, people have learned from cats and put that knowledge to use in helping other animals, in this case the science behind a cat’s eyes
At the time cats were becoming domesticated 9000 years ago until the late 1800s the domestic cat was useful to farmers catching rodents. Is (s)he still of use in this way? Is she a mouser cat still?
If you want to get closer to your cat you can talk and listen to her
If you think a cat’s behavior is strange or aggressive this may be due to an illness but if the cat is well it will normally be due to something that we can change. Their behavior is often a reaction to ours or due to a lack of proper socialization. I think that cat biting
Cat Facts – Update July 2010: See Cat Behavior for a major page on this subject.
Cat behavior is governed by the cat’s natural characteristics and instincts, which in turn are substantially affected by our behavior and expectations. Accordingly, I also discuss on this page human behavior where it intersects with or impacts on cat behavior.
We frequently see articles about cat training and cat behavior, including most commonly, aggressive cat behavior. Some times it really is a question of pure cat behavior but if we think about it a cat’s behavior is almost always to some degree or other dependent on our behavior and expectations. We like cats to fit in with our world, with what we do. They live largely on our terms. And if they don’t it is considered bad cat behavior and something to be trained out.
After all, the cat I am talking about is the domestic cat. This cat has been forced (or more accurately has agreed) to change by virtue of being domesticated and living in our world. We created all the elements of the domestic cat world. If a domestic cat sleeps more than a wild cat it is because he or she is being fed by us. If the domestic cat becomes, over a long time, more docile and less intelligent it is because (s)he is domesticated. There is less to do, survival is less demanding. We created the domestic cat character to a large extent. There are numerous examples demonstrating how human behavior underpins cat behavior, the latter in some small or large way being dependent on the former.
However, as we all know, the domestic cat’s wild instincts surface the moment he or she ventures outside and smells the air! Yet the vast majority of domestic cats in the largest of all domestic cat markets, America, are permanently indoors, constantly subdued to the state of pure domesticity, their wild cat instincts rarely visible.
I have written a lot of posts (on an associated Blogger site) which either focus on the subject of human behavior in relation to cats or there is an oblique reference to this aspect of cat behavior in the article. I list these articles on this page. I also write about how we can do things to better understand our cat companions, improve their lives and our relationship. I call these “How To Do It“
I also list articles about that mystery to mankind, cat food. It’s the ingredients that are baffling. Once again we control this aspect of the life of the domestic cat. And the cat food business is not a charitable concern. It is highly competitive. The quality of cat food is in constant competition with financial profit. Convenience is everything. But is this good for our cat companions? I think we should be vigilant on the issue of cat food quality. I address these issues in the list of articles below and have since writing this page built another on best cat food.
Finally, human behavior greatly impacts wildcat behavior and survival. Some of the posts addressing this are also listed below.
This is an expanding page on cat facts. There will inevitably some “overspill” as space runs out. There are, therefore links to other pages listing further articles and this is indicated.
***Please scroll down below the form to see peoples’ submissions*** The form is easy to use, just type and submit.
Click below to see contributions from other visitors to this page…
Stanly the Survivor
Stanly is my Manx Cat, his mother was a half starved stray, Stanly is born with a part of his spine missing, he couldn’t use his back legs as a Kitten….
There is a white cat breed – the Khao Manee
I noticed that it is sometimes said there are no white cat breeds, but there is one — a rare breed from Thailand called the Khao Manee.
It is thought …
The population growth of people is faster than for cats
I’m sick of hearing people saying that cats /animals should stop over breeding but its OK for people to breed at the current rate. There are about 70m …
Leaving a Cat at Home Alone
Hi, I’d like to hear the views of visitor on leaving cats at home alone. The way I see it, we can leave cats alone at home but the question is for how …
All About Cats: 50 Cat Facts
Well, here are some awesome cat facts! Enjoy!!
1) The love of cats is known as Ailurophilia.
2) A cat takes 20 to 40 breaths a minute.
3) A cat’…
I Lost My Cat
Hi I just want to tell you that we can’t find our cat.My dad was driving his car and ran over something on the cat and the cat ran away.
ANY ADVICE …
Walking My Cat In The Snow
Walking on the leash is not just for dogs. Cats can learn it too and this way indoor cats can enjoy some of the sensations of the outdoors without risking …
Cats in Poetry
Cats in Poetry goes back a long, long way. It tells us a bit about how people related to the domestic cat centuries before there were purebred cats. Purebred …
Cat population as a percentage of human population
On my internet travels this morning, I bumped into a chart that set out the population of domestic cats in various countries for the years 1998 and 1996….
Finding a Lost Cat
I’ll be honest, I have never been involved in finding a lost cat, except once when my cat was run over one fateful day about 17 years ago. The whole day …
How Fast Do Cats Breed?
19th August 2010: The question, “How fast do cats breed?” is a bit of a news story. I refer to Christie Keith’s excellent story, [Damn lies and cat …
Should I enter my cat in a cat show?
I was out in the garden yesterday and saw Daniel. Daniel lives with his human companion, Pierrot. They are my neighbors. Nothing exceptional there you …
Blind Cat Rescue and Sanctuary
“The greatness of a nation can be judged in how it’s animals are treated.” Ghandi.
I was recently invited to join a group on Facebook called Blind Cats …
Walking an Old Cat on the Leash
It’s been a year and a half since we adopted Snow White, our 10+ year old moggie. As we live on the 2nd floor, her outdoor activities have been restricted …
My Cat Explosion
one day my little cat got outside and didnt come back for three months when she came back she was huge!! all she did was eat and sleep and three weeks …
The Cat in the Barrel
Now is the season of Fastelavn in Denmark and traditionally a very sad time for the black cats.
In Roman Catholic countries the days leading up to Ash …
Cats as Familiars Part 3: Advice for Beginners
There are three types of familiars recognized in the magick world. Physical, astral and spiritual. My research on cats as familiars will be solely on cats….
Cats and Familiars Part 2: Wiccans and Witches
This article and the one that follows on Satanic cults and cats are very in depth concerning Wiccans and Witches and the differences between the three….
Cats as Familiars Part 1:From Blessed to Persecuted
It is common knowledge that the house cat can be traced back to the Egyptians who considered the cat a sacred animal. Not many know there was also a cat …
The Homing Instinct of Cats
The homing instinct of cats and dogs are well known but how does it work? Here are some examples of cats finding their way home over long distances:
The Cat is the Veterinarian’s Client
Veterinarians forget that the cat is the veterinarian’s client. Whenever, the word client is referred to by vets it is meant to mean the person who “owns”…
The Conventional View The Unconventional View Overlap The Conventional View Ailurophobia is the chronic and irrational fear …
Artists Like Cats Soldiers Like Dogs
This page explains the quote, Artists Like Cats Soldiers Like Dogs made by Desmond Morris. It is a quote that is well quoted on the internet. Although …
Here are a list of reasons for a howling cat and the various sources of that information. My cats have never yowled at night but my girl cat has on occasions …
At Feeding My Cat Bites Me
My name is christian Ortiz. I am 16 years old and live in the Bronx, New York. I have a domestic cat named Lucky. When ever [my Mom feeds him with food …
Turn the Cat in the Pan
Turn the cat in the pan is an old phrase that is interesting but it has little to do with cats unfortunately! Still, I am going to write about it nonetheless….
Facts on Animal Testing
There are facts on animal testing but they are dominated by opinion. Opinion is more important when it comes to animal testing than fact. I believe …
Three Legged Cat
I have just taken in a three legged cat. He is big, heavy and black. He shouldn’t be quite as heavy as it curtails his walking and jumping (down) skills….
Class B Cat Dealers
I think we have a duty to go behind the veneer of the cat world, the fancy world of show cats and the cosy world of well cared for domestic cats and look …
Polydactyl cats have more than the usual number of toes. The normal number is five on each of the paws of the front limbs and four on each of the paws …
I’d like to discuss one function of the cat’s tail that I am yet to see mentioned on any webpage or in any book. The tail has many functions. It is well …
Into the Mind of a Cat
I’d like to try and get into the mind of a cat. To go beyond understanding my cat and to try and understand what she feels, senses and thinks. And I don’…
How tabby cats got their “M” marking
As you’ll know most tabby cats carry a distinctive “M” marking in their foreheads. In Lorraine Chittock’s book ‘Cairo Cats – Egypt’s Enduring Legacy’…
Cats Are Not In The Food Chain
A person said on the radio that as cats are not in the food chain they are of no use to people and can be killed. A number of others agreed. What he meant …
Cats Deserve Love
This story is all about my new kitten, “White”. He’s about 3 months old already now. He has a sibling named, “Snow”. When White was about a month old he …
Water Fountains For Cats
Fresh water is vital for cats and water fountains for cats are, on the face of it, an excellent way of supplying it (but see update in comments). Before …
Organic Cat Food
I don’t buy organic cat food. Why not? When I thought hard about this my first thoughts were that I wasn’t sure it really was organic cat food – who …
I adopted our beautiful American Shorthair tabby cat from our local animal shelter one month ago. The first tree weeks were great. He was playing with …
Cat Poo Coffee
Cat Poo Coffee – see the cat, see the coffee, smell the aroma…umhh…..ahhh……argh. Late in the day, I’ve just spotted cat poo coffee , the most …
The Way My Cat Walks
Hi, I just noticed the way my cat walks and I had never thought about it before. She always walks on her toes. I know this is normal for cats but when …
Cat Under Stress
Something that can put a cat under stress and which can be totally avoided is multi or combo veterinarian treatment.
Cats are vaccinated. Cats are neutered….
Free Vet Advice
This is a personal appraisal of, and a commentary about, free vet advice .
This is the kind of advice we’d love to get free. Some lawyers give free …
Smells That Cats Hate
It is not that difficult to list the smells that cats hate. I am guessing that people who search for this phrase are doing so to repel their cat from entering …
The Cat Drugs of Catnip and Matatabi
This is a look at the cat drugs of catnip and matatabi from a slightly scientific point of view. Catnip is well known and the Japanese matatabi hardly …
Funny Cats Photos
Funny Cats Photos is a search term. People are looking for the classic photos of funny cats. And there was a time, perhaps it still exists, when funny …
Non Shedding Cat Breeds
Non shedding cat breeds don’t exist full stop, period. It is natural for a cat to shed its fur. But some cat breeds shed less than others because of …
My Cat Sleeps Too Long
Does my cat sleep too long? She seems to sleep all the time. She only wakes up for food and a bit of a walk. Then she goes back to sleep again. I am …
Cat Safe Garden
When I saw this video (I bumped into it by accident) I was prompted into writing about a cat safe garden. The concept is excellent, I think. There is …
Build Your Own Cat Tree?
Is it sensible and/or financially viable to build your own cat tree ? I ask because contrary to the views of people who run build-you-own-stuff websites,…
Do Cats Refuse Dog Food?
Can cats tell the difference between cat food and dog food and do cats refuse dog food ?
On the face of it cat and dog food looks and smells similar….
Touching a Cat
Once I saw a cat it didn’t have an owner. So I saw my friend pick it up and held it and then she brought it home. The next morning I called her but her …
Dog Temperament Testing Not rated yet
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Spotted Cats Not rated yet
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Understanding Cat Coat Types Not rated yet
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Japanese Bobtail Cats Not rated yet
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Creative Cat Names Not rated yet
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Environmentally Friendly Cat Litter Not rated yet
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Sense of Smell of a Cat Not rated yet
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People and Cats Not rated yet
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My Dog Chases Cats Not rated yet
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Fear Of Cats Not rated yet
Fear of cats is due to an underlying admiration of the effectiveness of the cat as a hunter and survivor. This admiration has resulted in the cat being …vvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvv
Cat facts must deal with issues of cat behavior. Sometimes cats are left alone too long causing anxiety. Living in a household can be stressful for humans and other animals. Some cats display what we consider to be bad behavior but is it? Is it just behavior we don’t like? Cats can be messy….are messy. Sometimes it is our fault and some litter training may be required. Although some cat like water which results in some interesting cat peeing behavior. I’m talking about Bengal cats primarily here. Bengals are more trainable than some cats. One way to get around the litter problems is to toilet train. I mean your cat is trained to use your toilet! In fact, cats can be trained generally. You’ll need technique and patience though. If your cat likes water, great, but most don’t and bathing a cat can be a hassle.
Cats are instinctive, reactionary (so are some people). Usually (if in good health) their behavior is aggressive due to untoward activity. It can include biting. Sometimes their behavior is not aggressive but “displacement” behavior. This diverts the cat’s mind from troublesome thoughts. Cat licking behaviorcan include displacement grooming. Most times when a cat licks her upper lip and nose this is simply cat licking displacement activity. We do the same when we bite our finger nails or scratch out heads.
Another form of behavior that can hurt catS and your possessions is cat chewing problems. Bengal cats and wildcat/domestic cat hybrids can sometimes be a little bit too eager to chew, shred and swallow objects such as paper. They can demonstrate what we would consider to be weird behavior. Bengal cats can also make Bengal cat smelly poo….!
As I said cats can be messy. They can also make a mess of the furniture. They scratch furniture for a good reason. There are ways around this “problem” (
for people) but these won’t suit everyone. Unfortunately about 20 – 30 million cats are declawed in the States at any one time – shocking statistic. Declawing hurts cats. Declawing can cause psychological damage and is totally unnecessary. Do people want to live with a cat or an animal that approximates to a cat? Claws are integral to a cat. There are better ways to cat claw control.
A lot of people especially in the USA keep their cats indoors full-time. Should we keep cats indoors or let them out? When we do keep cats indoors they will invariably spend a lot of time at the window looking out. We owe an obligation to entertain and one thing we can do (if we have the energy) is make some cat toys.
Being indoors and less active cats have to utilize their bottomless capacity to have cat naps. The indoor life also begs the question whether there are cats that could be described as house cat breeds. There are certainly cat breeds more suited to an indoor life. Although it most often goes unrecognized some plants are poisonous to cats and it is useful as a precautionary measure to know which ones. A lot of cats are apartment cats. There is always the possibility of escape or falling. It is amazing how many cats falling survive heights that would kill humans, without doubt. A testament to one more of their copious range of skills. If your cat is allowed out he’ll ask you to let him out often to check territory. A door is not in the cat’s vocabulary. This makes cat flaps extremely useful.
One way around the problem of eliminating danger to cats who wander outside is to leash train your cat (see also: Walking an old cat on a leash) This is not that easy and some cats are easier to train than others. The wildcat hybrids are easier such as the Chausie. Helmi Flick lived with a Chausie. Some think that cat collars help to protect their cat. They can but they can harm too. Most cat breeders don’t agree with them.
Cats are adaptable but territorial. One way a cat cat get injured if left to stray outside is in a fight especially if he is a Tom cat. Fighting cats follow a strict code of practice. Often it results in damaged cat ears.
When cats play or catch prey they tend to throw the object or animal in the air. This is part of the domestic cat hunting process and can also replicate the scenario if your cat was fishing. Domestic cats are domesticated but the wildcat is not far away.
Please note: All the links in this section on cat facts open a new window
Use the navbar (top) to see all the breeds or the Site Map. The cat breeds are at the core of cat facts. When you read articles on the Internet you see reference to “intelligent” cat breeds. This implies some cats are more intelligent than others. It is debatable whether there is an intelligent cat breed. It is also debatable whether there are best cat breeds
There is quite a lot of talk on the Internet about non shedding cat breeds
(a page is dedicated to this -these are some additional notes)
Cat health is the most important of all cat facts. My heart is very tender towards cats who live in the poorer countries. They have incredibly hard lives sometimes. Life is hard for humans never mind cats. Cats though are good survivors but their lives will be relatively short in these countries. A poisoned cat or a blind cat
One of the niggling possibilities that is always present is cat parasites such as ticks. Dog and cat parasites are ever present. A common fungal condition is cat ringworm, which as you probably know is not actually a worm. This condition can be transferred to humans for example when your cat transfers his scent when he rubs against you. In a world which is by necessity now becoming more in tune with nature and the environment a natural cure for cats ear infection may be useful.
An important aspect of cat health is vaccinations. It was once thought that yearly vaccinations should be automatically administered. They are necessary if you place your cat in cattery while you are on holiday (applies to the UK). But cat vaccination recommendations are changing it seems. Perhaps some cats are vaccinated too often. Cat facts need to include a discussion on the risk/reward element of vaccinations.
I discusss the fact that some people think that a cat’s dry nose is a sign of illness. I outline the possible reasons behind hair loss in cats, which is a disturbing symptom. The cat facts on the hair loss page are useful, I think.
Cat food is closely linked to cat health. The more you study cat food the more you realize a high standard of care is required and that a lot of commercially produced food is less than good. First if will not do to let your cat eat dog food
A page has since been dedicated to this subject: Cat Appearance.Cat facts recognizes the importance of appearance. Cat appearance is the most important aspect of cats for many people. Each cat breed has its own special distinguishing appearance. This is governed by the cat association breed standards. Within the standards there is sometimes room for a variety of coat types. In mixed breed cats anything goes as to coat type; the most common of which is the tabby coat. The tabby pattern
There are some cats that under their standards need to be a certain color such as the grey cats
Tortoisehell is another interesting and popular coat type, which can extend from the black tortoiseshell
The white spotting gene can be responsible for totally white cats
Cat coats often result from a subtle combination of genetic effects. An example is a mix of tortoiseshell and tabby (torbie), dilution and white mixed. You can see one or two cats like this on this page
If you’re interested in a rare cat even by rare cat standards an example would be the American Wirehair, which has another very distinct coat type. There are other cats with curly cat coats
Pointed cat coats
The Japanese like bicolor bobtailed cats. Bicolor is solid and white, meaning a single color of hair follicle in groups mixed with white hair. The Turkish Van is a classic solid and white
Cat facts cannot ignore the underbelly. This section covers two linked areas, cat meat
There are also a number of breeders who do the profession a disservice, which only serves to heighten the perception of some people that cat breeders are in part responsible for the unsustainable high domestic cat population. I don’t think that they are. The vast majority of cat breeders are very concerned people. Organizations such as the SPCA and RSPCA (UK) are under attack from cat breeders
for acting irresponsibly
The Associations have an obligation to be more vocal in respect of cat cruelty and some of the cruelest behavior takes place by some people in the Far East in China and Korea (but is not confined to these countries
The constant battle between the cat fancy and PETA
Cat Food precedes cat health. These are important cat facts. There is a growing awareness I believe (albeit slow) that commercial cat food is just not always that good quite frankly. For example, for some cats we have all experienced the “jelly syndrome”. Meat in jelly once eaten becomes meat and no jelly. Cats love the jelly
Cat Food ingredients can be a bit of a mystery. They include “ash”. I thought ash was the stuff in the fire after burning. Not the case thankfully
There may be a connection between dry cat food and obesity and diabetes. We need to as near as possible replicate what a cat eats in the wild. This could be raw cat food and supplements, which is on the face of it the best diet. Dry cat food possibly causes more problems that those mentioned above. It may cause urinary tract health problems and be a factor in the development of feline diabetes. Is there a cat food which is good for the urinary tract
If you combine indoor living (encouraging inactivity) and high carbohydrate dry cat food you can get obese cats which is a growing concern. Up to 70% of American domestic cats are obese we are told. This leads people to seek an inactive cat food diet
Major page on cat food: Best Cat Food contains some of these links and new links.
The people who created wildcat hybrids such as Jean Mill (the Bengal cat) and Paul…
I believe that with respect to cat ownership there should be a nanny state in…
I think there is global warming. The signs are there. Heatstroke is not something you…
Domestic cats are included as their hunting behavior when allowed to be expressed is exactly…