Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Pussy Foot

Ever wonder why the cat's paw is so sensitive to your touch?

It has been discovered that the cat's paw contains very sensitive nerve endings that scientists think can sense very tiny vibrations, probably a very good device to have for catching mice and other little critters.

Sometimes, when I'm playing with one of our cats, I'll try to tickle the toes into submission. A very difficult thing to do sometimes as the cat will withdraw its paw or even take a swipe at my hand with claws extended. But when you can convince your feline overlord to submit to a deep penetrating tickle with your finger in between its extended toes, it's pure bliss for the cat and its a moment of enjoyment for us human servants too as we share in this rare feline submission.

Therefore, the sensitive nerves in the cats paws can become a bone of contention between you and your pet if you persist in tickling its toes, but when you gain the trust of your little one enough to give it a good tickle with extended toes you are into good territory.

Some cats will just never allow you to make a big deal of their paws that way and other cats seem to enjoy it to no end, so test the waters and move slowly. See what your cat likes and dislikes and both of you will be very happy.

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

White Cats

Ever wonder about the colour of cats. There are so many different colours in our feline friends and its all because of their genes.

The white coat is almost always caused by a dominant gene. You should think of this as sort of a blanket masking the cats actual colour. There are no pigment cells in the hair shaft. This dominant gene prevents pigment from being produced. Extreme care is needed when breeding white cats, because a small proportion of white cats are deaf. The inner ear of the cat contains hairs that vibrate when sound waves enter the ear. If the pigment is missing from these hairs, they are not stiff enough to be set in motion.The results in the signal not getting to the auditory nerve.

Fortunately, most white cats still have pigment in the hairs of the inner ear. It is not advisable to breed from two white cats because the risk of deaf offspring is considerable and therefore no one should breed a deaf white cat for this reason.

Friday, July 6, 2012

Some Strange Facts

Mark Twain kept 11 cats at his farm in Connecticut. He wrote, "I simply can't resist a cat, particularly a purring one. They are the cleanest, cunningest, and most intelligent things I know, outside of the girl I love, of course."

A cat named Hamlet escaped from his carrier while on flight from Toronto. He was discovered 7 weeks later behind a panel. It is estimated that he travelled 600,000 km.

The gene that results in the orange tortoise-shell coat pattern of a calico cat is linked to the gene that determines the cat's gender.  A cat with this coat pattern is usually female, but on the rare occasion it is a male; he's usually sterile.

Cats can compress or elongate their spine, enabling them to sleep in tight places or leap across large spaces.

excerps taken from: Strange But True Cats, Copyright 2006, Sweetwater Press