Thursday, November 15, 2018

Whiskers

Your cat's whiskers are far more important than you might think. 

The most sensitive hairs on a body are called tactile hairs. On cats they are commonly referred to as whiskers. They are found on their upper lip, their chin and where their eye brows would be. Take a look behind your cat’s front paws. There are also whiskers there! 

Usually cats have about 12 whiskers in four rows on either side of their muzzle. The top row of whiskers move independently of the middle row. They are all connected to nerve fibers deep inside your cat's skin. These very special hairs on their faces are extremely sensitive and can detect changes in air current and vibrations that help your cat to locate prey as well as a safe escape route, like furniture or the closest tree. The whiskers on their ankles helps them with captured prey in their clutches. Cats are farsighted and often can't see what's right under their noses and the whiskers help. 

Your cat's whiskers also communicate three distinct moods. Whiskers flat against the cheeks means shy. Fully fanned and a bit forward indicate a tense or excited cat and whiskers in a neutral position, as if when sleeping, means a calm kitty.

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