Categories: Sounds

Pallas Cat Vocalisations

Pallas cat vocalisations (it should really be ‘Pallas’s Cat or ‘Manul’) remind us that this is not a cudly, domestic cat that has lost it’s wild cat heritage but very firmly a wild cat. Although domestic cats do sound like wild cats in respect of certain vocalisations, in general there is a huge gulf in the characteristics of the sounds produced by wild and domestic cats. I mention this because quite a lot of people look at the cute looking Pallas cat and want to know if they can become a pet. The answer is no (on practical and/or for legal reasons). These small wild cats have wild sounding vocalisations and they often have an aggressive tone.

Pallas’s Cat. Photo by Gary Brown

Below is a video from the Telegraph newspaper in which you can hear some Pallas cat vocalisations. There might be a 30 second advert at the beginning unfortunately but you can’t blame online newspapers for trying to make some money online. Below the video I briefly discuss Pallas cat sounds further.

There are very few discriptions of Manul vocalisations regrettably. A scientist called Pocock in his book of 1939 called ‘The Fauna of British India including Ceylon and Burma Vol 1’, writes about the cat’s spits which he described as a sharp ts, ts, ts projected through closed lips. The cat’s sexual call is a combination of a small dog’s bark and the hoot of an owl!

The Pallas cat has a unique lip quiver which is believed to be a threat display. The upper lip is raised on one side showing the canine tooth then the lip is rapidly lowered and raised for around 5 seconds.



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Michael Broad

Hi, I'm a 71-year-old retired solicitor (attorney in the US). Before qualifying I worked in many jobs including professional photography. I have a girlfriend, Michelle. I love nature, cats and all animals. I am concerned about their welfare.

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  • A beautiful, pudgy cat that I would have the urge to approach. But, his vocalizations make it clear to me that it wouldn't be in my best interest.
    He's quite fierce, even more so than my beloved bobcat or any true feral of mine.
    To be admired from a distance, for sure.

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