The cat is a very misunderstood animal. Here are the top 5 "facts" about cats that most people still believe to be true:
#5: Cats Can See In The Dark
A cat has vertical pupils that expand to let him see in near darkness. He has about thirty whiskers which help him find his way around at night, even in strange surroundings. But he is not endowed with special eyesight that can enable him to see in absolute darkness.
#4: Cats Are Surefooted, And Always Land On Their Feet
Some children, believing this piece of folklore, delight in dropping Puss from heights-like out of the window-just to prove it is true. But it is more often false. Puss ends up with broken legs, or neck, and it is too late to say “Don’t believe everything you hear!”
It’s true that cats are the most agile, surefooted, graceful animals in the world-most of the time. But they can also knock over lamps, send coffee cups flying, and fall off chairs. They can end up with broken bones in short falls, especially when they are kittens.
#3: Cats Are Cowards
Dogs are well known for their heroism, but not many people know that cats, too, have their hours of glory. For instance, Agatha, who saved her family from fire by jumping on their bed. Or a cunning Siamese named Su-Ling, whose ferocious growling and tiger pounce sent a prowler scrambling. Or the story of the courageous feline who scratched her sleeping mistress continuously to save her from fire, knowing the dear, deaf lady could not hear.
There are many stories of cats scaring away poisonous reptiles, scorpions, and other unpleasant folk. In Florida, a tiny kitten was credited with alerting her mistress to the danger of a deadly coral snake. Remember, heroism is not confined to only one species of animal.
#2: Cats Are Stupid
Physiologically, a cat’s brain bears a striking resemblance to that of man-more so than any other animal’s. How do we measure intelligence in an animal? One cannot and should not play one species off against another. Cats, for example, are bored with mazes. But watch them get out of any enclosed space!
They can open doors, lift latches, leap many times their own length over walls. Psychologists have noted that their ability to escape confinement is superior to that of any other animal. Besides superb skill and strategy in stalking prey, cats have a built in clock. They know when it’s time for you to come home, and when it is time for bed.
#1: Cats Are Not Affectionate
The person who thinks a cat is an unloving animal never held one on his lap. First the cat kneads gently to make the spot as soft and comfortable as possible, then settles down and purrs. Whether he purrs loudly of softly, it’s love. A cat’s affection is always subtle, like rubbing against your legs. Each cat varies in the amount of affection he wishes to put forth, and in the ways he wishes to show it. But it’s there-as long as you are receptive-and sometimes even if you’re not.