Cat Instinct and Behavior

Sometimes, when you share your life with a cat, it's easy to forget that it's not a another member of the family with four legs and a coat of fur. Nonetheless, as all species, cats tend to have their own complex system of behavior, which relates directly with it's wild origins and remains strong regardless of thousands of years of domestication.

Personal Care
For an animal that hates water, cats spend a lot of time grooming. Licking its fur with the tongue serves various functions: it removes loose hair and smoothens the coat which insulates the body more efficiently; it stimulates the glands at the base of the hair, which makes it waterproof; in warm weather, licking spreads saliva which cools the cat as it evaporates.

The Response to Catnip
If you have a garden, give your cat a little relaxation by planting some catnip in a sunny area. Nepeta cataria, known as catnip, is an attractive plant which produces blue flowers in the summer. The oils in the leaves have a chemical component which puts the cat in a state of joy. They smell the plant and then roll in it, freeing the aroma. You can also buy dry leaves or toys stuffed with it.

Purring
Why and how cats purr is a mystery, even for experts on the subject. It is believed they have additional membranes close to the vocal cords and purring is caused by them vibrating, although it has not yet been proved. Purring indicates pleasure, satisfaction and affection. Sometimes it is a not very subtle way of asking for food. Cats purr when given birth and when their kittens are lactating. The vibrations act as a guiding system for the kittens, who are born blind, deaf and without a sense of smell. Strangely, sick or hurt cats also purr, maybe for consolation. Cats also purr a lot when they are harvesting a flu.

Sleep
There are many illnesses which can affect a cat, but insomnia is definitely not one of them. Cats spend two thirds of the day sleeping, even though it is in short naps. In their wild state it is a way to conserve energy for the intense activities of hunting for food and protecting their territory. The spoiled house cat doesn't do much hunting, but still sleeps a lot.

Cat Houses Cat Territorial Instincts Cats Hunting Instinct The Cats Senses, Ears, Eyes, Nose and Teeth Cats Senses, Whiskers, Tail, Claws and Fur Cat Instinct and Behavior