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THE PET CONNECTION
By Gina Spadafori
Pet Columnist
http://javascript:OpenNewWindow('http://www.VeterinaryPartner.com/Content.plx?P=PRINT&A=3441') http://javascript:PopUp('http://www.VeterinaryPartner.com/Content.plx?P=EAF&A=3441');10 Questions to Test your Feline Expertise


Cats seem so mysterious, but sometimes their mysteries aren't so hard to figure out. How well do you know cats? Check out these 10 fast questions, with the answers at the end. No fair letting your cat help!
1. When used to describe a cat's behavior, "bunting" is when a cat:
a) Uses urine to mark a doorway
b) Chatters at the sight of a bird
c) Bumps and rubs his head to leave a scent mark
d) Bats around his prey

2. Which of these is not a reason why cats claw things?
a) To keep claws sharp and help remove worn claw sheathes
b) To leave scent on an object
c) To provide muscles with a good stretch
d) To be spiteful

3. A cat who's getting agitated to the point of lashing out while being petted will often have a tail that's:
a) Twitching and flipping at the tip
b) Wagging gently from the base
c) Perfectly still
d) Carried straight up

4. Cats purr when they're:
a) Content
b) Frightened
c) Injured
d) All of the above

5. Most cats have how many whiskers?
a) 18
b) 24
c) 32
d) 56

6. Which of the following places are not good for petting, in the opinion of most cats?
a) Tummy
b) Underside of chin
c) Base of tail
d) Side of face

7. The average cat weighs:
a) Between 12 and 15 pounds
b) Between 8 and 10 pounds
c) More than 15 pounds
d) Between 6 and 8 pounds

8. Cats start their grooming routine by:
a) Licking their tail tips
b) Licking their flanks
c) Licking their lips
d) Licking their paws

9. "High-rise" syndrome refers to:
a) A cat's preference for perching on tall objects
b) The ability of cats to live happily in upper-floor apartments
c) The survival rate of cats who fall from high places
d) A cat's enjoyment of a good view

10. The normal body temperature of a cat is:
a) 97 degrees
b) Between 100 and 102.5 degrees
c) 99 degrees
d) 104 degrees

ANSWERS
1. c -- Every cat lover is familiar with "bunting," which is what a cat does when he bumps and rubs on something, such as your leg or hand.

2. d -- Contrary to common belief, cats don't destroy your sofa for spite, but because clawing is natural feline behavior.

3. a -- You may avoid a nasty bite by watching your cat's tail. When the tip starts to flip, end the petting session.

4. d -- Although most purring is a sign of contentment, cats have also been known to purr in stressful or painful situations.

5. b -- In most cats, the 24 whiskers are neatly divided into four rows on each side of the face. Each whisker -- technically called a "vibrissa" -- is imbedded deeper than normal hairs to enhance its sensory input.

6. a -- Many cats become agitated if petted on the tummy, and they may claw or bite. Save tummy rubs for your dog!

7. b -- While most average-weight cats will come in between 8 pounds and 10 pounds, some cat breeds will normally be much heavier. A healthy cat should have a little padding over the ribs -- but not too much.

8. c -- A cat will generally groom himself in the same sequence, starting by licking his lips, then his paws, then rubbing the paws over his head. The tail is generally last to get cleaned.

9. c -- Cats can right themselves in midair and brace for impact if they have time, which is why cats have a better chance of surviving a fall from a few floors up than from a balcony closer to the ground. Above a certain height, however, no cat can survive the fall.

10. b -- Temperatures below 99 degrees or above 103 degrees are reason to worry -- and to call your veterinarian.

How'd you do? If you got them all right, you really know your cats. - By Gina Spadafori
 

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I did pretty well. I only missed questions 5 and 7. I only got 7 wrong because my cats all weigh more than that.

I still wonder why cats try to walk on the walls and why they eat paper? Too bad those questions were not on the list.
 

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Grrr. I got only half right. The important half thankfully.
I missed:
3: i watch ears for warning rather than tail though Seven just grabs with teeth without squeezing, that's my signal that enough is enough.
5: Never counted.
8: I saw Seven groom all the mentioned places but he never does a full session. He seems to randomly go for every bodypart, at any point stop and later resume with another. Totally random.
9: Never heard of "High-rise" syndrome.
10: To check Seven's temperature i'd have to use a rectal thermometer. I don't even own one. If anything seems off, (including energy levels) he gets a trip to the vet. So i never bothered to learn the normal temperature. All i know is that the nose is suposed to be wet hehe.


One comment though.
Cats can right themselves in midair and brace for impact if they have time, which is why cats have a better chance of surviving a fall from a few floors up than from a balcony closer to the ground.
Whaat?? In my experience cats can right themselves if the height is greater than your waist. A first floor (above ground floor) balcony seems more than enough to allow the cat to get it's paws facing the earth.
 

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ANSWERS
3. a -- You may avoid a nasty bite by watching your cat's tail. When the tip starts to flip, end the petting session.
Not true of all cats, Gizmo always twitches and flicks his tail whilst being petted, He also purrs really loudly and pushes his head into my hand so I doubt his tail twitching is a sign he's had enough. (Ears pinned back on the other hand definitely is)

6. a -- Many cats become agitated if petted on the tummy, and they may claw or bite. Save tummy rubs for your dog!
He loves it, Even rolls on his back specifically for it.
 

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I missed 8 - I've never noticed my girls licking their lips before grooming.

And 9 - I thought that only applied to cats named Weezie.
 

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I missed several too. So, we as a bunch of cat know it alls still have lots to learn, huh?! I guess we will all need to just keep this up for several more years. Good thing I have a lifetime membership, huh?? 27 years, 11 months 2 weeks and counting down!!!
 

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i missed #8 and #9. for #8, i've never noticed my cats licking their lips before starting to lick their paws. for #9, i knew the correct answer would be either a or c but chose a because it's not as scary for me to consider.
 

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Then my job here is done. :grin:
 

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Gonna drag this even further off topic. I saw this ad...
Missing half siamese cat named Weezy.has been gone since last Wednesday! Ky two pugs and I miss him like crazy! If anyone knows anything let me know please! He is from pierce st.ne and Broadway ne. Area.inside kitty,nine months.
And I thought to myself "how did they lose half a cat?" I never even considered the name at the time.
 

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I missed the whiskers one!
I don't ever remember reading anywhere about how many whiskers a cat has and I guess I've never been bored enough to think "Well, what can I do now? Oh wait! I can count my cats whiskers!!" :D
 

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I missed one....never counted their whiskers before, and my guess of 32 was wrong. I tried counting Alkees' whiskers, but went cross-eyed trying to count white whiskers on a white cat kept losing count. One side of Zuba's mouth had 17 whiskers, and the other about half that.....I guess Devons don't follow the norm.
 

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I only got 1/2 right, that goes to show how much I know about cats. I would never bother to count the whiskers,lol...IMO, its not important. Even if ET has 2 or 3 or 4 whiskers missing, I wouldn't know, its not gonna do any harm, am I right?

When grooming is concerned, I have always noticed, ET can start grooming from anywhere, sometimes he starts cleaning his eye first, sometimes licking his chest first, sometimes his sides, his belly. Its only after his meals that he starts with licking his lips.
 

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Both of my cats love to be rubbed on their bellies. They role over onto their backs and purr like crazy when I rub their tummies. One of them even drools with pleasure!
 
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