Are cats smart? I have to admit I know one who seems dumb as a rock. But most of us are very smart, although not in the same ways you are. We couldn’t do a complicated math problem, but I’ll bet you couldn’t figure out how to catch a mouse!
Are cats smart Thomasina? Mine does the dumbest things! — Curious Cat Mom
Hi Curious Cat Mom!
I’ll bet some of the things your cat does that seem dumb to you make perfect sense to him. Most cats are smart — very smart. But we use our intelligence in different ways than you do because we need to accomplish different things.
Although your cat can probably count exactly how many treats you just gave him, we have no need to understand advanced math. And you have no need to know how to catch a mouse because you probably wouldn’t eat one, no matter how hungry you were.
Did you know this? Cats get bored. Very bored. That’s especially true of cats who live strictly indoors. I’ve put together some suggestions for making life more fun and interesting for bored cats.
Do cats get bored, Thomasina? All my cat does is eat and sleep.
— Worried Cat Mom
Hi Worried Cat Mom!
Thanks for your question! Sadly, many people don’t even think about cats getting bored. But boredom can be a real problem for cats, especially cats who live strictly indoors.
Think about what your life would be like if all you had to do was look at the same four walls day after day, year after year. I’ll bet you’re already falling asleep!
While we do sleep a lot — between 13-16 hours a day — there’s a reason for those frequent cat naps. Our bodies are designed to run, climb and hunt, and we need to conserve energy for all those intense activities. But sleeping all the time isn’t conserving energy. When cats get bored, they can’t think of anything else to do but sleep.
Can humans do things cats hate, Thomasina? The other night, I gave mine a big hug and got scratched! Why would he do that? I thought he loved me!
I’m so sorry about the scratch. Unfortunately, humans can do things cats hate. And for some of us, hugging is one of them. If you gave me a hug, I’d scratch, too. Many of us aren’t big on huge human arms squishing us until our ribs ache.
I’m sure your cat loves you a lot. But there are some things humans do that annoy us so much. Picking us up is one of them. We feel safer when our feet are planted firmly on the ground, not suspended in midair. Hugging can actually hurt and make getting picked up even worse.
14 Things Cats Hate