Cats are the most popular pet in America – even more so than dogs. In 2012 there were more than 86 million cats owned as pets as opposed to 78 million dogs. If you’re one of those millions of cat lovers, you probably know quite a bit about cats. But cats are mysterious creatures, after all. Here are five facts about cats that you might not have known.
1. Cats are not taken to the vet as often as dogs are. In fact, almost twice as many cats than dogs never visit the veterinarian. Regular veterinary care is especially important for cats. Cats are experts at hiding disease so by the time symptoms begin to show, a disease might be in its advanced stages.
2. Cats shouldn’t be given milk. Kittens are perfectly able to digest their mother’s milk, of course, but cow’s milk isn’t particularly good for cats, and adult cats are often actually lactose intolerant. Even though we may have seen plenty of pictures of cats drinking a saucer of milk, they should stick to their regular food and water. Find out what else to do to avoid cat stomach upsets.
3. Not all cats react to catnip. Catnip is an herb in the mint family and while some cats will go bonkers at the scent, cats have to inherit the tendency to react to it. ⅓ of cats won’t react at all. Overexposure to the herb may also result in decreased effects.
5. Most cats are mixed breed kitties. While 95% of cats kept as pets in the US are American Domestics, or mixed breeds, there are over 70 different pedigreed breeds of domestic cats. Find out where all of these different cat breeds came from, and what their distinct traits are.