Today is Ginger Cat Appreciation Day! As a small animal veterinarian, any day to recognize these cute, adorable, yet often times overlooked fur babies, is a reason to celebrate. And who does not LOVE cats? Especially gingers cats. The classic one of course being Garfield, who has become an icon in our country. Garfield embodies all the funny, quirky, adorable, fun loving characteristics that we all love about cats. So today I would like to celebrate Ginger Cat Appreciation Day a discuss all the reasons why I love cats.
Fun Facts About Cats to remember on National Ginger Cat Appreciation Day:
- Cats are the most popular pet in the United States. There are 88 million pet cats and 74 million dogs, yet cats go to the veterinarian far less often than dogs.
- By nature, cats are nocturnal (they sleep during the day and are up at night). Cats actually sleep 70% of their lives. Human domestication of cats has taught them to sleep more at night.
- Cats have an extra organ that, with some breathing control, allows the cats to taste-sense the air.
- A cat’s purr may not always indicate happiness and relaxation. It can be a sign of nervousness as well.
- Cats are often lactose intolerant, so contrary to common belief, cats do not tolerate milk!
- Dogs make around 10 sounds, whereas cats make more than 100.
- A cat’s brain is 90% similar to a human brain — more similar than to a dog brain.
- A cat’s cerebral cortex (the part of the brain in charge of cognitive information processing) has 300 million neurons, compared with a dog’s 160 million.
- Cats have a longer-term memory than dogs.
- A cat can jump up to six times its length.
- Cats can change their meow to manipulate a human. For instance, they often imitate a human baby when they need food.
- Meows are not innate cat language, they developed them to communicate with humans.
- Cats can move their ears 180 degrees and can also move each ear separately.
- Hearing is a cat’s strongest sense. They can hear sounds as high as 64 kHz — compared with humans, who can hear as high as 20 kHz.
- Cats use their whiskers to detect if they can fit through a space.
- Cats hide illnesses extremely well. It is generally not until the end stage of a disease that you will start to notice changes in your cat’s behavior.
- Only 24% of cats who enter animal shelters are adopted.
Cool Unique Facts About Ginger Cats (Also Known As The Orange Tabby Cat):
- Just like humans, there are different shades of ginger between cats. They can have an orange, red, or yellow-colored fur. Pheomelamine is the pigment responsible for the ginger color in cats. The amount of this pigment reflects how intense the ginger color of the cat is.
- Ginger cats are more likely to be male than female
- Ginger cats have the “reputation” of being more active and playful.
- The ginger coat comes in 4 types, classic (swirled), mackerel (striped), spotted, and ticked (agouti).
- All ginger cats are tabbies, but all tabbies are not orange.
Alright, I could go on and on but are you starting to see why I love cats so much? They really are unique and amazing little creatures. In addition to their independence and loyalty to their owners, they make great pets and are generally easier to care for than dogs (key word being “generally”, do not hold it against me if you have a high maintenance cat)! But please remember to not mistake independence as a reason not bring your pet to the vet. As stated above, cats hide illnesses as a survival technique and generally do not show something is wrong until they are at the end stage of disease. I encourage you to go out and celebrate National Ginger Cat Appreciation day and adopt a cute little orange tabby at your local shelter:) The love, laughter, and happiness these adorable little guys bring to your family is truly amazing