Cats can do Math

Cats can do maths

Christina Sng for Maths@Singapore

Many articles have been written about cats having the ability to do math and they are true. 

When you watch your cat at home staring at a table before taking a leap, you know calculations are ticking in her brain as her eyes regard the table. There’s trigonometry going on there.

As I was a teen, I watched my cat Boy jump onto my mother’s three-tiered display shelf, weave himself through her glass ornaments, and in all his years, knock over and break none of them even as his tail swished around.

That’s some impressive accuracy there and not without speedy mathematical calculations and physical agility. Imagine us trying to walk through a thick forest and not touch a single branch. It’s not easy.

Cats can count. It’s been well-documented that cats know when one of their kittens is missing.

They certainly understand the concept of more or less, how full their food and water bowls are, and how many cat

enemies wait outside the front door.

My cat Kit was abandoned by her previous human and definitely has known hunger. So she always leaves a few kibbles in her bowl.

She will herd me from my room to tell me she is starving only for me to find her bowl is still relatively full.

I ask her, “What do you want, Kit?”

“More kibbles,” she meows.

“Your food bowl is full!” 

“No, it’s not.”

We stand there till I top it up a bit, then she eats, and leaves more in her bowl before sauntering off to groom herself. That’s definitely an understanding of how more is enough for her.

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Thanks to Paul Hanaoka @plhnk for making this photo available freely on Unsplash 🎁

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