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Cats (Felis), a genus of carnivorous mammals of the feline family. Sizes from small (forest and steppe cat) to medium and large (lynx and puma). According to the structure of the skull, fur color and geographic distribution, about 20 subgenera are distinguished. For example, the ocelot of South America belongs to the subgenus Leopardus, the Pallas' cat of Central and South Asia belongs to Otocolobus, and the Bengal cat belongs to Prionailurus. In the Mediterranean and Central Asia, the Libyan, or spotted, K. (F. libyca) is widespread, from which, apparently, all breeds and offspring of domestic cats originated.
Domestic cats differ mainly in coat length and color. Previously, it was believed that the domestication of cats took place in ancient Egypt, where the cat was a sacred animal and was embalmed. It is more likely, however, that the domestication of the cat occurred independently among the ancient peoples of the Caucasus and Western Asia, where the remains of such cats were found in the layers of settlements of the Bronze Age and even the Neolithic.
The group of long-haired breeds includes: Angora, Persian and Siberian; to the group of short-haired - Siamese and tailless, as well as short-haired cats of various colors, bred in many European countries. Domestic cats are very useful in homes and warehouses by killing rodents (mice and rats), but they harm gardens by eating beneficial birds.
In a broad sense, cats are all members of the feline family, both living and extinct; for example, saber-toothed cat (mahairod), large cave cat (cave lion), domestic Siamese cat, etc.
Myths about cats
Cats should drink milk every day. Some cats cannot digest the lactose in milk, so this product can cause diarrhea in them. It is advisable to give milk infrequently and in small quantities. Overall, milk is a healthy product that contains protein and calcium, but lacks iron and taurine. If the cats are fed special diets, they don't need milk.
Cats need fish. Raw fish contains the enzyme thiaminase, which breaks down vitamin B1. Feeding fish contributes to the development of kidney stones due to the fact that the fish contains substances that contribute to the formation of kidney stones.
Cats heal themselves by licking their wounds. Small wounds and scratches can be allowed to lick the cat for a short time, this disinfects them and promotes healing. If the wound is extensive or the licking is too persistent, then it can enlarge and even deepen it. The rough surface of the cat's tongue, like emery, peels off the upper layers of the skin, slowing down healing. Sometimes it is worth putting on a protective collar or blanket on the cat.
Cats see in the dark as during the day. In fact, cats see little better in the dark than humans. However, the fact is that cats are born hunters! What we call whiskers is vibrissae in cats, located not only on the pads of the whiskers, but also on the eyebrows, cheeks, and paws. And ears on the top of the head that can hear everyone! These are their locating devices, with the help of which they accurately identify the location of the object. Among other things, even during the day, cats' vision is not perfect. Another feature of feline vision is hyperopia. Cats do not see very well stationary objects located directly in front of them. By the way, sniffing food, they just want to know its temperature, not taste.
Cats always land painlessly on their paws. This is true, but only if it falls from a small height. An innate instinct helps a falling cat to land on its paws. First, she turns her head and front legs, then, steering her tail, - the back of the body. Thus, all four legs are directed towards the ground. However, falling from a great height very often leads to bone fractures, and the cat can even die to death.
Cats maintain balance with whiskers. Whiskers (vibrises) in cats are organs of touch, and they have nothing to do with balance.
If the cat does not walk on the street, then it cannot get sick. Pathogens of dangerous diseases can get into the apartment on the clothes and shoes of the owners, as well as through contaminated, poor-quality food for the cat. Therefore, if a disinfection chamber is not installed at the entrance to your home, vaccinations and regular deworming are equally necessary for all cats.
The cat and the dog are enemies. The stories about the eternal enmity between the cat and the dog are unfounded. They just speak different languages, often not understanding each other. Sometimes there are animals with a pronounced hunting instinct or overly aggressive, some people deliberately set their dogs on cats. However, animals living in the same family get along well with each other, and some outgoing, peaceful dogs are ready to be friends with all cats in the world.
Siamese cats are aggressive. In fact, no more than all other breeds. Only man, his cruel treatment and misunderstanding can make an animal aggressive. Siamese cats are just very jumpy and temperamental, they express their emotions brighter than others. Yes, and their voice is loud (but not the loudest of all, this is also a delusion, the sphinxes, for example, roar so that Siamese are resting).
There are no tricolor cats, only cats can be red-black-and-white or tortoiseshell. According to statistics, there is one three-color cat for every three thousand tricolor cats! True, they are usually sterile.
The cat becomes attached to the house. Cats are naturally more independent, no matter how you play with them. But if the cat does not walk on the street, then from moving to another apartment nothing will change for her. Now, if she walks outside, then it's another matter - yes, most likely she will run away from the new house to the old territory.
Before spaying, the cat must give birth at least once. This is one of the most common myths (including dogs). With late sterilization, the risk of developing diseases of the reproductive organs and the breast increases. It is advisable to spay a cat 5-6 months old, before the first estrus.
After neutering, cats become fat and lazy. Rather, they become more accommodating and calm, which some people mistake for laziness. In fact, any cat (both castrated and natural) sleeps at least 18 hours a day. And in winter, he does not sleep all day long, getting up just to eat. A cat, in order to feel like a normal cat in its prime, requires the constant presence of two cats "in the hunt." If you can't provide it - castrate.
Cats behave badly in spite of their owners. Behavior problems are usually associated with stress. Cats are very sensitive to changes in the owner's daily routine, to repairs and family fights. This causes them stress and depression. Behavioral problems can also be attributed to various diseases. If the cat begins to "do its own thing" outside the designated area, she may have kidney disease.