Cats Psychology – Time to Understand – Part 3

Cats Psychology – Time to Understand – Part 3

In the next few months, I want to discuss the psychological understanding we have about cats and the way they behave. Most of you cat lovers may know some or all of the things I will discuss, however, I thought it would be an excellent idea to go over different aspects of cat’s behaviour and the reasons behind it.

Today I am going to discuss how sensitive cats are to us and our cues. Cats are domestic these days, and so you would think that they would have, by now, picked up on our cues, however, this is not the case with all cats.

Based on Miklósi et al.’s research study, it has been proven that cats actually follow human gestures in order to find food. The study similarly concludes that cats are not problem solvers and are unable to solve a task. They also do not turn to humans for help.

Another really interesting psychological fact about cats is that studies were conducted to see if they, like humans, turn to their owner when they are unsure about a situation. Meaning, if they feel scared or need reassurance, would a cat hide or run to their owner for protection? This term in psychology is called “Social referencing.” The results were fascinating. A higher percentage of cats did, in fact, run to their owner.

That’s it for today guys. If you liked this article, then stay tuned for more. Don’t forget to like and share.

Jeyran Main is a professional book editor, marketing adviser, and book reviewer. Her website Review Tales demonstrates her thoughts, reflections and book reviews.

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8 thoughts on “Cats Psychology – Time to Understand – Part 3

  1. toutparmoi says:

    I’m surprised by studies that find that cats are not problem solvers. I’ve seen cats solve problems. A quick example is my mother’s cat, who was a good ratter.

    She carried a dead rat into the house, and my mother chased her out. She then spent some time at the back door with her rat, meowing to be let in again. This didn’t happen, so she took the rat away.

    Later, she appeared at the back door without the rat, so was let in it. Even later she wandered innocently to another room of the house, and meowed for its door to be opened. Then she went in, and picked up her rat.

    She’d taken the rat in through that room’s open window, left it there, and returned to the back door.

    The problem she’d solved was, “No-one will open a door for me when I’m carrying my rat. Therefore I have to find another way into the house.

    “But now I’m in, this room’s door is closed, too. No use meowing here – they’ll guess what I’m up to. So now I have to show them I have no rat, and then all doors will be opened for me.”

  2. colonialist says:

    I also don’t buy that non-problem-solver conclusion. I have had cats work out quite complex door mechanisms and exercises in logical reasoning, such as finding other methods of extracting something that is stuck, or moving something to act as a springboard.

  3. sofania says:

    Yeah. I’ve had cats most of my life and I’ve seen plenty of problem solving behavior. Maybe the cats in the study just didn’t solve problems set up for them in a study/lab environment because said problems weren’t something they wanted or needed to do. Maybe they were demonstrating their independence by refusing to participate. 🙂

  4. stellrstar says:

    I take the indoor cats in my house outside on leads. They seem to like for me to follow them to wherever they wish. When I see them begin to be overstimulated by a loud noise or a family member who just came outside, I stroke them and tell them that it is “Okay.” They seem to be comforted, and often, they calmly hold their ground instead of running to and up the door to get back inside.

  5. simon7banks says:

    A higher proportion of cats run to their owner…than what? Than don’t do that? Than humans run to their owner?

    Interesting behaviour by my new, young cat which has adopted me: sitting on my computer chair with her catnip mouse.

  6. simon7banks says:

    I’s be very sceptical about that study as reported. Cats are quite intelligent animals. What do they use their intelligence for, then? There was a discredited behaviourist study which put a cat in a box with controls inside, one of which opened the box, and concluded the cat just made random actions one of which eventually worked. OK, but what had the cat got to go on, in a totally unfamiliar environment?

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