We all know that our feline friends are fascinating creatures, but you may be surprised by some of these facts about cats…
1. A group of adult cats is called a ‘clowder’, and a group of kittens is referred to as a litter or a ‘kindle’. The word kindle originated from the Old English word ‘kindling’ which was a term used for birthing.
2. A person who loves cats is known as an ailurophile, from the Greek word for cat ‘ailouros’. If you don’t like cats or are scared of them, you are an ailurophobe.
3. Everyone knows cats are pretty fast on their feet when they want to be, but did you know they can move at approximately 30 miles (45 kilometres) per hour? And their athletic ability doesn’t end there. Cats can also jump up to five times their own height in just one bounce.
4. Cats are well known for their sensitive hearing. Cats hear better than dogs. Cats can pick up sounds up to 64 kHz, a full octave higher than dogs. And you know those extra soft, cute bits of fur behind a cats’ ear? Well, they are called ‘ear furnishings.’
5. Cats aren’t colour blind. It has long been thought that cats were colour blind but this isn’t strictly true. Whilst they don’t see colours in the same way that a person would, they can make out some colours. Cats are particularly good at seeing blue, green, red and yellow, but they are less good are making out shades of red.
6. According to the Guinness Book of Records, the oldest cat is Pinky who was born in 1989 and lives in the United States. Cola, a short haired black cat in the UK could soon take the title of world’s oldest cat though, according to an article in the Metro. Cola is a sprightly 28-year-old and lives with her owner in Orpington, Kent.
7. Missi, a Maine Coon cat who lives in Finland, can boast of having the longest whiskers. They measure nineteen centimetres (seven and a half inches) in length.
8. Colonel Meow, a cat from Seattle, Washington has the longest fur. While this might make him a record breaker, it also means that it takes both of his owners to brush his coat – and he needs to be brushed up to three times a week.
9. Carmen de Aldana from Guatemala has the biggest collection of cat-related items. She began collecting with a set of ceramic kittens and years later has accumulated more than twenty thousand items.
10. In 1963, Felicette was the first cat was blasted into outer space. The French astrocat had electrodes attached to her brain so that signals could be sent back down to Earth. Felicette survived her space adventure, but it is not certain what happened to her after that.
What other interesting facts about cats have you come across?