You probably know your feline friend fairly well, but do you understand how its mind works? The answer is most likely no, and you aren't alone in that. Scientists have gotten far in researching the inner workings of dogs' minds, but they run into numerous challenges when attempting to assess cats. It turns out, felines are just divas (which, of course, we love them for!).
"I can assure you that it's easier to work with fish than cats," Christian Agrillo, a comparative psychologist at the University of Padova in Italy who commonly researches fish, told Slate. "It's incredible."
Agrillo may focus more on fish, but he has tried to study cats' minds. For example, he set up an experiment to see whether cats could discern quantity. He shone three dots over a desirable object (such as food) and two over a non-desirable object (like an empty plate). Unfortunately, many of the cats simply walked off, uninterested. However, Agrillo did manage some results, finding that cats care more about size than quantity (they went after large dots).
The results may stem from the fact that cats are largely independent. When they hunt, they want a big catch to feed themselves well. Other successful studies indicate that cats can tell what you're feeling, they just don't really care. However, it is this independent attitude that prompts many to adopt a feline friend.
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