When Humans Ask, ‘Is Catnip Safe?’ You Realize How Little They Know - Cat Crack Catnip

When Humans Ask, ‘Is Catnip Safe?’ You Realize How Little They Know

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By Luna.

As a cat from Whisker City, who grew up a Projects stray, but now lives in an Uptown home, I’ve seen humans from far and near – and I’m always surprised to hear the things they don’t know about us. 

Is Catnip Safe For Cats?

That’s one of them. And that’s what inspired this piece. But from 10 down to 1, we’re going way beyond that shocker – we’re going to reveal ten extraordinary cat facts that most humans simply do not know. What’s at number 1 – can you guess? Have a free hit, strap yourself in, and prepare to be amazed, as here we go: the top ten things humans don’t know about cats, and what that reveals about them.

The Top Ten Things Humans Don’t Know About Cats - And What That Reveals About Them

10 - We Only Really Meow for Their Benefit.

Most humans don’t realize that, by and large, cats only meow when they are speaking to them. Humans don’t notice our other ways of communicating, what with the endless combinations of meows, purrs, hisses, trills, growls and chirps, each carrying a different meaning - not to mention our ability to communicate through body language and scent. Why? Because with them, it’s all talk, talk, talk. When a human does communicate through scent, it’s never a good thing.

9 - Some Consider Us Sacred.

Most humans are unaware that some humans revere us. For example, according to the works of Herodotus, in Ancient Egypt, when a cat died, members of their human family would shave off their eyebrows in mourning. Quite right, too. In contrast, no-one thinks humans are special apart from other humans. And dogs. And who do humans think are sacred? It’s an underwhelming mix of gods, cows, and celebrities.

8 - There Was Once a Cat That Was Over Four Feet Long.

48.5 inches, to be precise. He was called Stewie. That was his actual name. I’m surprised a human didn’t call him Longy or Sausage or Snake, though - their naming skills often leave a lot to be desired. He was a Maine Coone. And why don’t humans know this? Perhaps it’s because they measure themselves in height rather than length. The tallest human on record was 105 inches. Some humans regard it as undesirable to be short, despite the obvious advantages, such as less distance to travel when serving cat food into bowls. 

7 - Before Social Media, the World’s Richest Cat Was Worth $7 Million.

His name was Blackie. I’m willing to bet that he was black, and his name was given to him by a human. (See note above re: the naming of cats). Imagine how much catnip all that cash could buy?! It’s not fair, but fear not; there are free hits for everyone. You’re going to need one, because check this out: the richest cat today is called Nala Cat - a Siamese Tabby with over 4 million followers on Instagram – and she’s worth $100 million! Why don’t most humans know this either? Perhaps it’s because some of them are even richer? Today there’s one called ‘Jeff Bezos’. According to some sources though, the richest ever was a guy called Mansa Musa I of Mali, who ruled from 1312 to 1337 – his fortune was equivalent to 100’s of billions of dollars.

6 - We Are Neither Nocturnal Nor Diurnal – We Are Something Else.

Humans are so binary. They believe everything is black and white. (If they created a fictional cat, advertising cat food, the chances are, it would literally be black and white). They tend to believe animals are either nocturnal or ‘the other one’ (diurnal, or what they call ‘normal’). But no. Cats – like deer and rabbits - are crepuscular, meaning we are most active at dawn and dusk, and like to rest during the day and night. FYI animals can also be matutinal (active just after dawn, like lizards), vespertine (active just before dusk, like bats), or cathemeral (no preference, like chickens).

Get Ready for the Final Countdown - As We Bo From 5 Down to 1…

5 - We Don’t Just Purr Because We’re Happy.

It’s perhaps understandable that humans get this wrong. Grinning and laughing are the traditional signs of happiness amongst humans, and they only do those things when they are happy (or a bit mad). Most of them genuinely have no idea that purring can be an act of self-healing or reflect the fact that we are frightened or in pain.

4 - Each of Our Ears Contains 32 muscles.

Humans have no idea that we can twitch, swivel and angle those babies to hear whatever we want, wherever it is. They think it’s an incredible coincidence that we just ‘show up’ when they do, to demand food. In comparison, it’s so rare for a human to be able to move their ears. Those who can, do it as a ‘party trick’. Pathetic.

3 - We Share 95.6% of Our Genetic Makeup With Tigers.

This is why we should be respected and given extra portions. Humans watch on in awe as we stalk pray (such as dust bunnies) and then pounce, so they should also forgive us (fully) if we mark our territory with urine: after all, they wouldn’t have a dig at a tiger if they did the same. Humans, meanwhile, share 60% of their DNA with...bananas. In terms of brain power, cats have superior problem-solving and memory skills to dogs: we can remember events up to 16 hours ago.

2 - All That Licking We Do? It’s Not Just for Cleaning.

Most humans are unaware that our rigorous grooming routines also help regulate our body temperature. Why? Humans mostly use ‘clothes’ to control their temperature – they’re obsessed, and this can lead to poor decisions, like making dogs wear Christmas jumpers. Humans have been warned that they should never try to put a cat in a jumper – the humiliation involved is fine for a dog, but could harm a cat-human relationship for good (or for 16 hours anyway). 

1 - We Can Run Faster Than Usain Bolt.

A famous human called Usain Bolt is believed to have achieved a top speed of 27.8 miles per hour. Some humans really bang on about how fast he was, like it’s a big deal. But cats have been known to hit 30 miles per hour. Once again, we are better than humans. Humans wishing to see a cat at top speed could consider administering some zoomie-inducing catnip. In addition, we can jump five times our own height, so we are better than humans at that too. When we look at them, we don’t think ‘Fosbury flop’, we think ‘evolutionary flop’. Although we can’t pole vault.

Is Catnip Safe?

We end – as befits the circle of life – back where we started. Many humans want to know: what’s in catnip? What does catnip do to cats? Is catnip safe? And to us, that may seem remarkable. But let’s give them the benefit of the doubt:

  • Nepetalactone doesn’t trigger the same response in humans that it does in cats.
  • There isn’t even a human equivalent.
  • They don’t necessarily realize that cat nip is 100% natural and non-toxic.
  • They just see how much fun it gives us, and don’t want that fun to come at a price. Because they love you, that’s all. So forgive them. 

There are so many things humans don’t know about cats. All we can do is keep communicating with them – using meows – and hope they eventually get the message. 

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