OK, maybe I’m not making things up. My friend’s cat really plans to kill me. He gives me a disgusted look every time I visit. Despite this situation, I like cats and continue to mourn Claude, a fluffy orange stray we took in when the children were little.
Researchers at the University of Helsinki have identified seven personality traits in cats, including aggression towards humans. I’ll get more into this study in a moment, listing the other traits, but first I’d like to share some information about the potential health benefits of owning a cat and / or other pet.
In a newsletter, the National Institutes of Health highlight their commitment to researching the health benefits of keeping pets, including how pets can benefit children with attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder. And they mention how previous research has shown that pets can help you reduce stress and improve heart health.
With regards to cats, one study shows that owning a cat can reduce your risk of dying from cardiovascular disease, especially if you’re a woman over 50. And another study shows that cats can lower your risk of asthma.
I could enumerate more studies as there are quite a few. But now let’s look at the seven newly identified personality traits in cats. The cat researchers wanted to identify the traits in order to identify behavior problems and improve the cat’s welfare. I believe some of these traits make people love their kittens and it is the connection with our animals that then gives us the health benefits.
Seven behavioral and personality traits of cats:
- Activity / playfulness
- Aggression towards people
- Socializing with people
- Socializing with cats
- Problems with the litter box
- Excessive maintenance
The study is published in Animals magazine.
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