Loving Cats a Little Extra to Wrap Up the Year
This time of year is home to many holidays, but once again cats claim the attention they deserve by taking up the whole of December for Cat Lovers Month! It's no secret that cats will tell you exactly what they want and need from you, but let's explore some of our feline friends' amazing qualities and appreciate all the things they do for us. Your Cat Improves Your Mental Health People are finally taking mental health seriously and gaining an understanding of just how important your mental state is to your overall well being. Lucky for the cat owners of the world, spending some time with your purring pal can improve your state of mind and help keep you sane. Petting your cat for as little as 10 minutes has the power to reduce the stress hormone cortisol throughout the day. A great stress reliever is sitting right on your lap! The companionship of a cat also prevents loneliness and provides social support. Coming home to your pet every day makes you feel less alone and gives you the responsibility of taking care of another living thing. Taking care of pets helps us grow our empathy and kindness and gives us the chance to step into a role that's very important for our psychology - caregiving. Caregiving provides us with a sense of satisfaction and usefulness, and caring for a cat requires less maintenance than the alternatives! If you want to boost your mental health and make a loving friend, it might be time to look into local adoptions and rescue programs. Physical Health and the Power of the Purr Want to lower your blood pressure response to mental stress? Look no further than the top of the cat tower. The social support that you receive from your cat makes dealing with mental stress easier and keeps your blood pressure down. You'll not only feel less stressed, but your physical responses to stress won't be as extreme, which keeps you healthier. It has also been found that people who have owned cats were 40% less likely to die of a heart attack. This is probably due to the stress-reducing power of cats, as lowering blood pressure and reducing other symptoms of stress at any point in life can help prevent heart problems down the line. Your couch buddy can extend your life and improve your health, if that's not a praise-worthy power, what is? Almost all cats purr between the frequencies of 25 and 140 Hz, the same frequencies that have been shown to promote bone growth, wound healing, and more. For our feline friends, this probably isn't a happy coincidence, but a useful trait that was developed over time. Cats are known for healing relatively quickly from broken bones, and they generally have low cases of joint problems and bone cancer. This superpower is thought to benefit humans in the same way, so the next time your cat sounds like a revving engine, take some extra time to cuddle them and take advantage of their magic purr. How Your Cat Shows Love We love our cats for all the things they do for us, but how can you tell your cat loves you? A big part of love is trust. You can tell that your cat trusts you and feels relaxed around you by observing simple things like where they sleep, if they purr when laying on your lap, and of course, the famous slow blink, which means they are at ease and happy around you. Keeping in mind the genetic history of cats, we can understand some of their more interesting displays of affection. When your cat brings you small items, or even their own prey, they're offering you their catch. They want to take care of you and offer you a valuable gift - time to praise your kitty for providing for you! How would you survive without them? Another display of affection that has a hidden meaning is their habit of bonking their head on you and rubbing their face on your body. While this might also provide a quick face scratch, the main purpose is to leave their scent and claim you as their territory - other cats be warned. To speak your cat's language, give them a slow blink from across the room, reciprocate the face rubs, and help them with their hunting instincts by playing with them. You might look a little ridiculous to the other humans around, but who cares about that? Celebrate your loafing, loud, and loving kitties this month by getting them some extra toys and treats at your local pet store! During Cat Lovers Month, let's put some extra effort into appreciating these amazing creatures and all they do for us.