A family affair
We certainly see our furry children as members of the family but do they see us in the same way or are we just, as some suggest, cat servants doing the bidding of our furry masters?
Head bumps and well-timed licks imply that our cats love us but without the tell-tale waggy tail of their larger furry counterparts, it can be hard to know for sure. Well, good news, scientists have been investigating just that and it seems that our furry cat children do indeed see us as their parents.
A study published in Current Biology has suggested that cats develop distinct attachment styles similar to those seen in babies and dogs. In other words, our cats know that we're family.
The study was rather cute, but then it's hard not to be when the subjects were 70 kittens! The kittens spent two minutes with their caregivers before being left alone for two minutes and then reunited. Their behaviour was analysed and the cats were sorted into attachment groups of secure, ambivalent, avoidant, and disorganized (the styles also used for dogs and babies).
A surprising result
60% of the cats displayed a secure attachment style and were happier and more relaxed when their caregivers returned. 60% may not sound like an overwhelming percentage but it actually mirrors the results seen in human children.
There are many more studies carried out on furry friends of the canine variety and cats are often overlooked in such studies but it seems that science may finally be proving what us cat lovers have known all along, cats are flippin' great!