Art and the philosophy of life

Archive for the ‘Research’ Category

Cats and PBS

Cat, Relax, Chill Out, Camacho

Yes, I use this picture all the time because I just love it.   Anyway, I started to watch a program on cats, last night (PBS).  I don’t know how much money scientists spend on research that we could live without, but I think it’s a lot.  They tested people to see why there is such a connection between humans and cats.  I don’t know why it matters, but it wasn’t up to me.

They could have just asked everyone but then they wouldn’t have been able to look at their brains in expensive machines, right?  So, first they looked at the brain (I don’t know if they tried it on men, they only showed a woman and did NOT say if men were involved which is a very IMPORTANT part of the equations, as far as I’m concerned).

Moving on.  They had a woman wired and sitting in a machine, in a sealed room.   Then the scientist played the sound of a baby crying.  Then he played an adult crying, then he played a cat meowing.  The baby and the cat lit up her brain in the same way.  Both sounds, whether we want them to or not, go straight to our emotional response centers.  Again, did they do it with men?  Did men HAVE an emotional response?  Without that information, the data is incomplete.  Men also love cats, but do cats, or even babies, light them up?

Other people on the program, as far as I watched it, (I stopped when big cats were taking down other animals),  said cat’s pretty much hang around us for food, shelter and all the rest.  They don’t really do it because they love us.  But we cat lovers know that those people are insane and don’t have a clue.  They probably don’t even have cats.  Even the cat lovers on the show knew the people who said that were wrong.  Sure, cats use us as furniture, beds and servants, but they can still love us.  People are the same way and sometimes they love us too.

Then they put a person in a room with her cat and she made a bad face.  The cat looked at her, walked over to her and then went to climb something.  Then she made a happy face and the cat walked over to her, after he was finished climbing, and looked at her.  OMG this is real research?  NO, it is not.  It’s wasting time pretending to be research.  They said with strangers the cat couldn’t have cared less about the face, no matter what the stranger did.  This is like one of those games where you’re supposed to find how many things are wrong with a picture.  This is, find the mistakes with the research.

The test was done in a new ENVIRONMENT that smelled and looked completely different to the cat, so that alone negates the findings of what the cat actually wanted to LOOK AT, just like it would with us, IF WE were placed in a new environment, no matter who was sitting there making ugly faces.

EVERYONE acts differently in a new environment.  There were all kinds of things to look at and climb and the room was nothing the cat had ever seen before. It was so silly, I couldn’t believe it wasn’t a joke.  What were they thinking?  All they proved, was that if you put a cat and the cat’s person in a new room with stairs and platforms to climb and things to explore, the cat will look around and then, when he’s finished looking around, if he feels like it, he’ll walk over to his person and look at her. He didn’t climb in her lap, he just looked at her, the same way he looked at the other things around him.  I think he sat down. That’s the entire result.  It doesn’t mean the cat can read faces or ever cares, not when there are things that catch his interest.  New things. He knew what she looked like, after all he lived with her. And seriously her mean face looked ridiculous.

All of us cat lovers know that our cats comfort us when we’re sick or upset.  They read something, faces, emotions, feelings, whatever but EVERYONE wants to look around a new place with toys.

Okay, so cats talk to us.  They DO NOT meow to other cats.  I’ve heard this before.  Somehow they are wired to know that if they meow at us, we will do what they want.  Just like a baby’s cry.  We respond to meeps, mews and meows.  I’m okay with that.  I would take a meow over a crying baby any day of the week.

Another thing, our domestic cats, have longer guts because wild cats are 100% meat eaters and can’t digest carbs.  But as our cats became domesticated, they started eating food scraps from humans and they had to evolve to digest other things.  Our cats are bigger because they are well fed.  Wild cats are sometimes smaller than the could be because they expend energy hunting, so they don’t really have enough to eat.  But cats should really eat meat.

Because of the muscular make up of a cat’s face, cats can’t make facial expressions, the way dogs, and we can.  They don’t have the muscles in their eyebrows to move them.  One woman, a vet, has been taking pictures of the sick cats and the cats in pain, who are brought to their clinic.  She said she measured minute differences (so small, we can’t actually SEE them) on her computer, which she considers an expression of pain and discomfort, etc.  I don’t know what to say about that.  They don’t have the muscles to change their expressions, but their eyes might be a bit more closed at the corners and their  faces a tiny bit more narrow around the mouth, but you can only see that with measurements on a computer, so we can’t know if they are in pain by looking at them. How does knowing that help us?  I couldn’t even see it on her computer.

I loved the looks on the faces of the cat people.  They are so in love with their cats.  The cats pat the face of their human and the sun shines out of the human’s face.  True love is a beautiful thing.  LOL  We love our cats.  It will never matter why, or what part of our brain lights up, or whether they love us for food or anything else.  It’s a perfect relationship and cats make us happy.   That’s really all any of us ever needs to know.

Meow is a beautiful sound.


Picture:  Pixabay


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