What Makes Cats Special: Cat Senses
Cats possess highly developed senses that evolved to make them excellent predators. Cats are exciting to watch whether they’re on the prowl, playing or stalking a potential snack. The following are the most important cat senses.
Cats can detect higher frequencies of sound than many other mammals, including dogs. Their hearing is so developed that cats can determine the direction of noise or sound with no more than a five-degree error. This sense of hearing enables them to be very effective predators.
A cat’s visual acuity is about ten times that of humans. The structure of the retina includes “movement detectors” to help cats locate potential prey. Cats also have excellent night vision and are able to track their prey in darkness.
The cat’s sense of smell is its primary resource for identifying things in its environment. Cats are capable of sensing 200 million odors and they live in a sensory world completely apart from ours. A cat’s sense of smell is very important and may even result in some puzzling and disturbing behavior.
Each whisker is an intricate receptor designed to allow a cat to sense the smallest changes in the environment such as tiny movements, air currents, or changes in air pressure, temperature or wind direction. Whiskers help a cat to navigate at night and to determine whether he can fit through narrow spaces. Cats can even change the position of their whiskers when hunting in order to collect information about their prey.
Cats enjoy being touched by other cats and by humans. From early infancy, the mother cat grooms her kittens to demonstrate her affection. You should also provide your cat with lots of gentle handling on a daily basis when she’s young if you want her to develop into the kind of cat that likes to be held and cuddled.