Can cats understand their names?  Four questions and answers about communicating with your cat

Can cats understand their names? Four questions and answers about communicating with your cat

How does communication between cats differ from communication between cats and humans?

“Domestic cats are descended from desert cats that lived a solitary life. But during domestication they formed groups and learned social behavior. However, cats prefer to avoid direct confrontation and therefore communicate with each other mainly through their scent. Cats’ faces are filled with scent glands, especially on the cheeks. “It releases pheromones that only cats can smell. When a cat gives you a cup, it’s passing on its scent to you. That’s a friendly signal, but we don’t smell it.”

“So cats mainly use body language to communicate with us. For example, most people know that raising a tail is a friendly signal, but ears are also important. Cats use sounds too, but we see that cats have learned to make sounds to people. Cats do this a lot Less often between them.

Can cats understand their names?

Japanese research From 2019 audio recordings of random words and their names were played to cats. They were expressed by it What is with youBut also by strangers. They saw that the cats responded differently to their own names, but sometimes also to the names of other cats. But a small number of cats participated in the study by tail or tail Headphones Except, for example, the researchers didn’t notice anything difference. The cats only responded when I added up all the ways they responded.

“Research suggests that cats can understand their names, but it is important to use one name. We tend to give our cats pet names, but the cat learns their name through repetition. You should also constantly combine the name with body language such as extending your hand, so the cat knows That you talk to her in a baby’s voice can also help, because research Cats seem to notice you talking to them because we don’t use that sound with others.

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“More research is needed into the cognitive ability of cats. We know that cats can learn words, but we don’t know how much yet.

Should you train your cat to understand her name?

No research has been done yet on the differences in intelligibility between cat names, But it’s better to always use the same name. Cats automatically learn their name through positive associations, for example when you call them because they are being fed. When you call a cat because it has jumped on something, it also learns its name. This is called classical conditioning: the cat sees its name as a cue for other things. It is possible and beneficial to train cats, but their motivation and attention spans stretch It often is Smaller than in dogs. It is best to train the cat without punishing it, as this only creates fear.

Videos of cats using buttons to “talk” to their owners are circulating on YouTube. When either presses the button, the button says a word that the other can understand. How does this work?

“First the cat learns to associate the sound of the button with something positive, which is classical conditioning. This is followed by operant conditioning: the cat has to press the same button to get the reward. This way you stimulate your cat’s brain and this is enriching for it. But I think it is more important that it learns to read Your cat’s body language This way she can say what she wants in her own way, because human language is more artificial. If you still want to train your cat, it is better to teach her how to enter the transport box.

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“We don’t realize enough that cats are training us too. For example, they stand next to the food cupboard and you want to offer them food. We must learn to look at what the cats are showing us and respond accordingly, This is possible Even without a human source like Push buttons.’

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