Although dogs are still the most popular family pet, cats are giving them a run for their money. Statistics show that cat ownership is increasingly significantly, and within twenty years cats will be the number one pet in the United States. If you are interested in owning a cat and want to know more about them, please read on. We will give you some information about cats, their personality, and what you can expect from them.
Cats were first domesticated about 5,000 years ago in ancient Egypt where they were worshiped as gods. Some people joke that cats have never forgotten this, as an explanation for their seemingly aloof nature. But cats are far more affectionate than many people realize, they merely show it in a different way than dogs.
Dogs are descendant from a pack animal and are not happy unless they have a leader. Cats are descendant from a solitary animal which relies upon its own cunning for survival. These traits continue in each animal. This difference is important to remember when trying to decipher their behavior as a pet. Dogs need a leader, but cats are independent.
Because most cats are separated from their mother prior to the age of twelve weeks, the cat will essentially adopt the owner as a surrogate mother for the duration of its life (typically 15 to 20 years). This is why cats have a habit of “kneading” their owner with their front paws. This behavior is used by young kittens to stimulate milk flow and they associate the behavior with comfort and security. The same goes for purring. Young kittens purr only when they are near their mother.
Because they still retain elements of their hunter instinct, cats will show affection to their owner by occasionally bringing them a gift of a recent kill, such as a rodent or bird. Cats which are kept indoors will still perform this behavior, but will substitute it with a small toy. They also show affection by licking and rubbing against their owner and physical items in the home. This transfers their scent onto the person or item, and is the cat’s way of claiming ownership so that it can feel secure in its environment. Studies have shown that owning a cat provides medical advantages. The act of petting a cat reduces stress hormones, lowers blood pressure and releases endorphins.
The various breeds of cat have different traits. For example, Siamese cats are very vocal, Persian cats are relatively quiet and British Shorthair cats are more comfortable in cramped quarters. You can investigate the various breeds to find which is most compatible with your home and lifestyle.
Owning a cat can be a great joy. Now that you have more information about their behavior you can make a more informed choice. When you go looking for a cat, the best place to turn is your local animal shelter. You will be able to find many cats of all breeds and ages looking for a safe and comfortable home.