163 Cat Facts That Will Blow Your Mind

Posted in: Cat Info - Last Updated: February 24, 2023 - Author: Laraib Shah
Posted in Cat Info 
Last Updated: February 24, 2023  
Author:  Laraib Shah
cat facts

There’s no getting away from the truth that cats are mystical and fascinating animals. ‘Hoomans’ have been obsessing over them for more than 6,500 years and guess what, we still are! Maybe that's why we're always looking for more facts about cats - fun cat facts, random cat facts, amazing cat facts, mind blowing cat facts!

A lot of that is because there are amazing stories about the things cats can do, the abilities they have or some of the amazing escapes they have managed to pull off.

When you start to dig deeper you can find incredible and fun facts about cats. As you reserach you find interesting facts or just weird facts about cats are all over the internet.

We took a look at a bunch of these fun facts about cats and have tirelessly compiled this list of seemingly cat facts that will blow your mind.  As you already know, cats really are remarkable creatures! 

Once you’ve read through the list you’ll find that I’ve added a little section at the bottom where I’ve put a few interesting facts about cats of my own that I have come to know and learn about our feline friends. Not necessarily the most scientific cat facts but those we all know to be true!

Cat Facts - Fun Facts About Cats

Let's dig into these mind blowing facst about cats:

1. Cats are the most popular pet in the USA. There are 88 million cats kept as pets! 

2. Cats have over 30 muscles that control their ears.

3. Cats sleep 70% of their lives, and in some pretty crazy positions.

4. A cat fact you've probably noticed in your feline, your kitty has the ability to rotate their ears 180 degrees.

5. A cat’s nose is as unique as a human fingerprint. One cat, Oz, even has a Map of Australia on Her Nose

6. Cats have 3 eyelids.

7. A cat called Stubbs has been mayor of Talkeetna, Alaska, for 15 years. He sadly died in 2017.

8. A cat ran for mayor of Mexico City in 2013.

9. Unlike humans, cats cannot detect sweetness – which explains why they are not drawn to it.

10. Ginger tabby cats sometimes have freckles around their mouths and on their eyelids!

11. A cat has the power to heal themselves by purring. A domestic cat’s purr has a frequency of between 25 and 150 Hertz. This happens to be the frequency at which muscles and bones best grow and repair themselves. 

12. Cats only use their meows to talk to humans, not each other. 

13. There are cats who have survived falls from over 32 stories (320 meters) onto concrete.

14. A group of cats is called a clowder.

15. The only time cats meow to communicate with other felines is when they are kittens signalling their mother.

16. Amazingly, studies indicate that cats are actually lactose intolerant and should avoid milk entirely.

17. The longest living cat on record according to the Guinness Book belongs to the late Creme Puff of Austin, Texas who lived to the ripe old age of 38 years and 3 days!

18. There are 44 recognized breeds of cats.

19. A cat’s cerebral cortex contains about twice as many neurons as that of dogs. 

20. Polydactyl cats (a cat with 1-2 extra toes on their paws) have this as a result of a genetic mutation. These cats are also referred to as “Hemingway cats” because writer Ernest Hemingway reportedly owned dozens of them at his home in Key West, Florida.

21. Sir Isaac Newton is credited with creating the concept for the cat flap! Spithead, one of his cats, kept opening the door and wrecking his experiment. Thus, the need for a cat flap. 

fun facts about cats

22. An average cat can jump 8 feet in a single bound. That is almost six times its body length!

23. A cat’s smell is their strongest sense.

24. Cats rely on smell to identify people and objects.

25. A cat’s sense of smell is 14x better than a human’s.

26. Cats only sweat through their paws and nowhere else on their body.

27. A cat only has the ability to move their jaw up and down, not side to side like a human can.

28. A female cat can be referred to as a molly or a queen.

29. A male cat is often labeled as a tom.

30. Your cat’s heart beats at a rate almost double that of a human. This varies from 110-140 beats per minute.

31. In Ancient Egypt, when a person’s house cat passed away, the owner would shave their eyebrows to show their grief.

32. Studies show that owning a cat is beneficial for your health.

33. Cats are non-confrontational. They will not fight to show dominance, but do fight to protect their territory. 

34. Cats will actually go to extremes to avoid one another in order to prevent  possible confrontation.

34. Unlike humans, cats are usually lefties. Studies indicate that their left paw is typically their dominant paw.

35. In tigers and tabbies, the middle of the tongue is covered in backward-pointing spines, used for breaking off and gripping meat.

36. When cats grimace, they are usually "taste-scenting." They have an extra organ that allows the cats to taste-sense the air.

37. Owning a cat can reduce the risk of a heart attack or stroke by a third.

38. Stewie, a gray tabby Maine Coon, holds the record for World's longest domestic cat. He measured 48.5 inches long (123 cm).

39. When a cat hunts, it keeps its head level. Dogs and humans bob their heads up and down.

40. The technical term for a cat hairball is a “bezoar.”

41. To get down from a tree, a cat must back down. This is because every claw on a cat’s paw points the same way.

42. The claws on the cat’s back-paws aren’t as sharp as the claws on the front. This is because the claws in the back don’t retract and, consequently, become worn.

43. Cats make around 100 different sounds. Dogs make only about 10.

44. There are more than 500 million domestic cats in the world.

45. The oldest known pet cat was recently found in a 9,500-year-old grave on the Mediterranean island of Cyprus. This grave predates early Egyptian art depicting cats by 4,000 years or more.

46. During the time of the Spanish Inquisition, Pope Innocent VIII condemned cats as evil and thousands of cats were destroyed. This had a rather bad knock-on effect as the widespread killing of cats led to a spike in the rat population, which accelerated the effects of the Black Death. oops!

47. During the Middle Ages, cats were associated with witchcraft.

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48. The first cat in space was a French cat named Felicette (a.k.a. “Astrocat”). In 1963, France blasted the cat into outer space. She survived the trip.

49. The group of words associated with cat (chat, katze, catt, cath,) stems from the Latin catus, meaning domestic cat.

50. Evidence suggests domesticated cats have been around since 3600 B.C. 2,000 years before Egypt's pharaohs.

51. As well as a cat's purr being a form of self-healing, it can also be a sign of nervousness and contentment.

52. The world's richest cat, Blackie, is worth $15 million after his human passed away and left her fortune to him.

53. Cats recognize individual voices

54. Alongside milk, it is untrue that raw fish is healthy for cats.

55. The oldest cat video dates back to 1894.

56. In the 1960s, the CIA tried to turn a cat into a spy. They implanted a microphone into her ear and a radio transmitter at the base of her skull. She survived the surgery but got hit by a taxi on her first mission. Poor thing.

57. A cat's brain is 90% similar to humans.

58. Cats and humans have nearly identical sections of the brain that control emotion. One of those cat facts you feel your furry friend is pointing out when they give you 'that' stare...

59. A cat's cerebral cortex (the part of the brain in charge of cognitive information processing) has 300 million neurons, compared with a dog's 160 million.

60. Cats have a longer-term memory than dogs.

61. Many parts of Europe and North America consider the black cat a sign of bad luck. However, in Britain and Australia, black cats are considered lucky.

62. The most popular pedigree cats are the Persian, Main Coon cat and the Siamese cat breeds.

63. The smallest pedigreed cat is a Singapura, which can weigh just 1.8 kg.

64. The largest pedigree cats are Maine Coon cats, which can weigh 11.3 kg.

65. Some cats have survived falls of over 65 feet (20 meters), due largely to their “righting reflex.” The eyes and balance organs in the inner ear tell it where it is in space so the cat can land on its feet. 

66. Even cats without a tail have this “righting reflex” ability.

67. Some Siamese cats appear cross-eyed because the nerves from the left side of the brain go to mostly the right eye and the nerves from the right side of the brain go mostly to the left eye. 

68. Tabbies got their name because their striped coats resemble the famous wavy patterns in the silk produced in the city of Attabiyah, Iraq.

69. Cats have "nine lives" thanks to a flexible spine and powerful leg and back muscles.

70. Cats hate the water because their fur does not insulate well when it’s wet. 

71. The Turkish Van, however, is one cat that likes swimming. It’s coat has a unique texture that makes it water resistant.

72. The Egyptian Mau is probably the oldest breed of cat. 

73. The first commercially cloned pet was a cat named "Little Nicky." He cost $50,000, making him one of the most expensive cats ever.

74. A cat usually has around 12 whiskers on each side of its face.

75. A cat’s eyesight is both better and worse than humans. Cats can see in much dimmer light and have a wider peripheral view. However, they don’t see color as well as humans do. 

76. Scientists believe grass appears red to cats.

77. Cats have a lower social IQ than dogs but can solve more difficult cognitive problems - when they feel like it that is.

78. Cats have 1,000 times more data storage than an iPad.

79. It was illegal to slay cats in ancient Egypt, in large part because they controlled the rat population.

80. In the 15th century, Pope Innocent VIII began ordering the killing of cats, pronouncing them demonic.

81. Original kitty litter was made out of sand but it was replaced by more absorbent clay in the 1940s.

82. Abraham Lincoln kept four cats in the White House.When asked if her husband had any hobbies, Mary Todd Lincoln is said to have replied "cats."

83. One legend claims that cats were created when a lion on Noah's Ark sneezed and two kittens came out.

84. A house cat is faster than Usain Bolt. The best of the athletic speedy cat facts you can use in the pet round of your pub quiz!

85. When cats leave their poop uncovered, it is a sign of aggression to let you know they don't fear you.

86. Cats can change their meow to manipulate a human. They often imitate a human baby when they need food. 

87. Cats use their whiskers to detect if they can fit through a space.

88. The first cat in space was French. She was named Felicette, or "Astrocat." She survived the trip.

89. Cats have free-floating clavicle bones, attaching their shoulders to their forelimbs, which allows them to squeeze through very small spaces.

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90. Hearing is the strongest of cat's senses: They can hear sounds as high as 64 kHz — compared with humans, who can hear only as high as 20 kHz.

91. Cats can move their ears 180 degrees.

92. Cats can also move their ears separately.

93. A cat has detected his human's breast cancer.

facts about cats nose

94. A cat's nose has a unique pattern, just like a human fingerprint.

95. Cats have scent glands along their tail, forehead, lips, chin, and the underside of their front paws.

96. A cat rubs against people to mark its territory.

97. Cats lick themselves to get your scent off.

98. The smallest wildcat today is the Black-footed cat. The females are less than 50 cm long and can weigh as little as 1.2 kg.

99. On average, cats spend two-thirds of every day sleeping. That means a six-year-old cat has been awake for only two years of its life.

100. In the original Italian version of Cinderella, the fairy godmother figure was a cat.

101. The little tufts of hair in a cat’s ear that help keep and insulate the ears are called “ear furnishings.”

102. The ability of a cat to find its way home is called “psi-traveling.” Experts think cats either use the angle of the sunlight to navigate or that cats have magnetized cells in their brains that act as a compass.

103. A cat’s jaw can’t move sideways, so a cat can’t chew large chunks of food.

104. A cat’s back is flexible because it has up to 53 loosely fitting vertebrae. Humans only have 34.

105. All cats have claws, and all, except the cheetah, sheath them when at rest.

106. A cat lover is called an Ailurophilia (Greek: cat+lover).

107. In Japan, cats are thought to have the power to turn into super spirits when they die. 

108. Cats were mythic symbols of divinity in ancient Egypt.

109. Black cats are bad luck in the United States, but they are good luck in the United Kingdom and Australia.

110. Only 11.5% of people consider themselves "cat people."

111. Cat people are also 11% more likely to be introverted.

112. Cat owners who are male tend to be luckier in love, as they are perceived as more sensitive.

113. Cat owners are 17% more likely to have a graduate degree.

114. A cat's carbon footprint is similar to that of a VW Bug, whereas a dog's can be more like a Hummer.

115. By leaving a dead animal in your house, your cat is acting out its natural role as hunter, mother and teacher. You, her loving ‘hooman’, represent her family. 

116. The largest litter of kittens produced 19 kittens.

117. Eighty-eight percent of cats in the U.S. are spayed or neutered.

118. Only 24% of cats who enter animal shelters are adopted.

119. Most cats had short hair until about 100 years ago. It then became fashionable to own cats and experiments with breeding began.

120. One reason that kittens sleep so much is because a growth hormone is released only during sleep.

121. Cats have about 130,000 hairs per square inch.

122. The heaviest cat on record is Himmy, a Tabby from Queensland, Australia. He weighed nearly 47 pounds (21 kg). He died at the age of 10.

123. How long do cats live? Well, a cat typically can live up to 20 years, which is equivalent to about 96 human years.

124. Approximately 1/3 of cat owners think their pets are able to read their minds.

125. A commemorative tower was built in Scotland for a cat named Towser. Towser caught nearly 30,000 mice in her lifetime.

126. In the 1750s, Europeans introduced cats into the Americas to control pests.

127. Organised cat shows became a worldwide craze in the 19th century.

128. The first cartoon cat was Felix the Cat in 1919. 

129. In 1940, Tom and Jerry starred in the first theatrical cartoon “Puss Gets the Boot.” 

130. In 1981 Andrew Lloyd Weber created the musical Cats, based on T.S. Eliot’s Old Possum’s Book of Practical Cats. 

131. The normal body temperature of a cat is between 100.5° and 102.5°F. 

132. A cat is sick if their temperature goes below 100° or above 103 °F.

fun cat facts bones

133. A cat has 230 bones in its body. A human has 206. 

134. A cat has no collarbone, so it can fit through any opening the size of its head. The squishiest of cat facts!

135. If they have ample water, cats can tolerate temperatures up to 133 °F.

136. Though milk is not toxic, it can cause an upset stomach and gas in cats. One of the cat facts you might already know if you've been in a room with a 'gassy' cat!

137. Tylenol and aspirin are extremely toxic to cats, as are many common houseplants. 

138. Feeding cats dog food or canned tuna that’s for human consumption can cause malnutrition.

139. A 2007 Gallup poll revealed that both men and women were equally likely to own a cat. 

140. A cat’s heart beats nearly twice as fast as a human heart, at 110 to 140 beats a minute.

141. In just seven years, a single pair of cats and their offspring could produce a staggering total of 420,000 kittens.

142. Cats spend nearly 1/3 of their waking hours cleaning themselves.

143. Grown cats have 30 teeth. Kittens have about 26 temporary teeth, which they lose when they are about 6 months old.

144. Cat paws act as temperature regulators, shock absorbers, hunting and grooming tools, sensors, and more

145. A cat called Dusty has the record for the most kittens. She had more than 420 kittens in her lifetime.

146. Cats are extremely sensitive to vibrations. Cats are said to detect earthquake tremors 10 or 15 minutes before humans can.

147. In contrast to dogs, cats have not undergone major changes during the domestication process.

148. There are up to 60 million feral cats in the United States alone.

149. The oldest cat to give birth was Kitty who, at the age of 30, gave birth to two kittens. During her life, she gave birth to 218 kittens.

150. The most traveled cat is Hamlet, who escaped from his carrier while on a flight. He hid for seven weeks on the airplane. By the time he was found, he had traveled nearly 373,000 miles. 

151. Cats have supersonic hearing.

152. In Holland’s embassy in Moscow, Russia, the staff noticed that the two Siamese cats kept meowing and clawing at the walls of the building. When their owners investigated they discovered microphones hidden by Russian spies. The cats heard the microphones when they switched on.

153. Rome has more homeless cats per square mile than any other city in the world.

Fun Facts About Cats!

This next section of fun cat facts are not scientifically proven cat facts, but they're close enough for us!)

154. A cat will always sit on your laptop when you are working and late for a deadline.

155. Cats will beg for a belly rub and then viciously swipe you with their mitten claws as if the ‘hooman’ has done something wrong!

156. Cats will always skip beautifully clean tap water and drink from a puddle or, even worse, the toilet! 

157. Their favourite pastime is to frantically run around the house at 4am.

158. A coughed up furball will always find your bare feet no matter how many precautions are taken.

159. All expensive cat gifts will be ignored and gift boxes will be sat in. The simple things.

160. Cats will always ask relentlessly to go outside...to then change their mind at the very last minute.

161. Cats will innocently tap anything resting on a surface so it crashes to the ground. All done whilst looking you straight in the eye.

162. Cats always demand more food even though their bowls are half full.

163. A cat’s favourite place is the bathroom. Especially when their human is sitting on the toilet having a moment.

Cat Facts - Conclusion

That’s our current list of incredible and fun cat facts.

If you think we’ve missed anything important or have anything to add, please leave a comment below and we’ll take a look at your fun facts about cats as well.

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About the author

Laraib Shah is a freelance writer and a proud cat mom who shares her home with an exceptionally perfect cat named Simba. As an experienced cat mom, she is the trusted authority on cat care and cat breeds for the team. Apart from cats, Laraib loves cooking, travelling plus cookies, ice cream, and coffee!