cat scholar

A Crazy List of Cat Facts and Trivia

Last Updated on January 31, 2023 by admin

We compiled the most epic list of cat facts and trivia to ever exist on the internet. If you know a fact or piece of trivia that isn’t on this list please comment below with the source.



History and Folklore

  1. The earliest ancestor of the modern cat emerged 20-25 million years ago and is known to paleontologists as the Proailurus (“first cat” in Greek)
  2. The earliest known pet cat was buried on Cyprus island 9500 years ago along with a human
  3. In the Middle Ages a great number of cats were exterminated by followers of the Catholic Church during the plagues because they were thought to be evil and associated with witchcraft. Without the cats to hunt rodents and pests the plagues only got worse
  4. In Europe, on St. John’s day cats would be stuffed in bags and tossed into bonfires
  5. On holy days people would celebrate by tossing cats from church towers
  6. In 1963 a cat named Felicette became the first cat sent to space. The poor cat was surgically implanted with permanent electrodes that sent electric shocks to her brain as it was launched in space to collect data. The cat survived the space mission only to be slaughtered two months later just so they could examine her brain
  7. When Noah prayed to God to protect food on the ark a lion sneezed out a cat as an answer to his prayers according to Hebrew legend
  8. In ancient Egypt when a pet cat died people would shave their eyebrows off and continue mourning until their eyebrow grew back. Cats were embalmed, placed in a coffin, and buried in cat cemetery
  9. Killing a cat was a capital crime in ancient Egypt unless it was for mummification
  10. Smuggling cats out of ancient Egypt was also punishable by death
  11. Mummified cats were used as sacred offerings in ancient Egypt
  12. In the 1880s 200,000 mummified animals were found in Central Egypt. Most of them were cats. After the discovery kids would rob the site and sell mummified cats to tourists. A good portion was sold to England to be used as fertilizer
  13. Cats traveled around the world with merchants and warships including the Romans and Vikings to help with pest control on the ships
  14. The first cat show was held in 1871 at Crystal Palace in London. These shows were patronized by Queen Victoria and became quite popular

Breeds and Other Felines

  1. The black-footed cat is the smallest wild cat species (only 14–20 in or 35–52 cm long) in Africa and also one of the best hunters in the cat world (they are also crazy cute)
  2. The Turkish Van breed of cats actually love water because their fur is more water resistant
  3. Persian cats are the most popular cat pedigree with Maine Coons are second
  4. Maine Coons are the largest house cats that can weigh up to 18 lb (8.2 kg). These cats were originally bred in the state of Maine and is currently the official state cat
  5. The smallest cat breed is a Singapura cat which weigh between 4-6 lbs (1.8-2.7 kg)
  6. Siberian Tigers are currently the largest wildcat alive. The largest can weigh 675 lb (306 kg)
  7. Siamese cats are genetically predisposed to having crossed eyes (strabismus)
  8. The word for tabby cats comes from Attabiyah a place in Baghdad (modern Iraq) where such striped cloths were made
  9. The Egyptian Mau are one of the oldest breeds and considered one of the progenitor breeds of modern cats. The word “mau” meant sun or cat in the ancient Egyptian language


  1. Cats were used to deliver snail mail in Belgium for a short-lived experiment in the 1870s
  2. A cat was once mayor of a small Alaskan town
  3. Cats can’t climb down a tree head first because their claws curl inwards so they have to back down
  4. Having a cat reduces your risk of having a stroke
  5. The world’s most traveled cat flew 600,000 miles (965,000 km) after getting lost behind airplane paneling
  6. Cats keep their head level when chasing prey
  7. Cats can drink salt water to survive unlike humans due to their biology even though it’s not recommended
  8. Scientists determined that cats recognize their own name (but might ignore you anyway)
  9. Around 4 million cats are eaten every year in China
  10. The proper term for a group of cats is clowder
  11. The first commercially cloned cat was born in 2004. The clone cost $50,000 to produce
  12. The first cloned cat was named “Carbon Copy” but didn’t look like the original. It was adopted locally celebrated its 18th birthday and even had kittens (another first as a cloned cat)
  13. Like human twins, cloned cats might not have the same personality as the original despite being genetically identical
  14. Sir Isaac Newton, the great scientist, is credited for inventing the cat flap. He was forced to use his considerable brain power to figure out how to keep his cat from messing up his experiments by opening the door
  15. The most expensive coffee is Kopi Luwak from Indonesia known as “cat poop coffee”. Beans can cost $100 per kilogram if farmed and $1300 per kilo if harvested in the wild. But technically the animals doing the work are palm civets known as toddy cats but these aren’t really cats
  16. The oldest cat to give birth was a 30 year old cat named Kitty
  17. A cat named Oscar that lived in a nursing home had an uncanny ability to predict the death of residents. Staff would alert family members when the cat started showing extra affection to a patient
  18. Calico cats are almost always female
  19. Ginger cats are almost always male
  20. Cats don’t get cavities but can suffer from gum disease, oral cancer, and inflammation
  21. Cats can’t get all essential nutrients from plants and must eat meat-based food to survive
  22. Cats are actually more popular than dogs as pets in the United States

Biology and Physical Characteristics

  1. Even scientists aren’t 100% sure how a cat makes their distinctive purring sound but purrs seem to have health benefits for humans
  2. Cats have around 32 muscles in each ear and can control their outer ear to determine sound direction and is an important part of their body language
  3. Cat brains have 300 million neurons versus 160 million for dogs
  4. Cats can make over 100 sounds while a dog makes 10
  5. Cats can cry like human babies which is endearing and sometimes creepy at the same time
  6. Unlike humans their clavicles are free floating and not attached which makes them more flexible and able to squeeze into tight spots (though they sometimes get stuck)
  7. Cats have better hearing than dogs. They can pick up two octaves higher than humans
  8. Cats have a third eyelid that rarely shows unless the cat is sick
  9. Normal cats hate water because getting wet messes with their ability to insulate and therefore regulate body temperature
  10. Cats sleep most of the day for an average of 15 hours and even as much as 20 across many sleep and wake cycles. That means for every year, they are asleep for 228 days!
  11. Cats have a top speed of 31 miles per hour (49 km)
  12. Cats don’t sweat water like humans except through the pads on their feet and nose. The sweat glands on their body excrete an oily substance. Cats lick themselves to help cool down
  13. Cat brains are 90% similar to humans
  14. Cats don’t have a “sweet tooth”
  15. The medical term for hairballs inside a cat’s body is trichobezoars
  16. Their body temperature is 99-102.5 degrees Fahrenheit (37.2-39.2 Celsius)
  17. Cats can tolerate heat up to 102.5 degrees Fahrenheit (39.2 degrees Celsius)
  18. Cats can tolerate cold down to 45 degrees Fahrenheit (7.2 degrees Celsius)
  19. Recommended room temperature for cats is 75-80 degrees Fahrenheit (23-26.7 degrees Celsius) but heating pads or spot heaters work for winter
  20. Their respiratory rate is 20-30 breaths per minute
  21. Their heart rate is 160-180 beats per minute
  22. Their blood pressure between 120-130 mmHg
  23. Cats have survived falls from as high as 32 feet (9.75 meters) without using up one of their nine lives but they usually require emergency medical treatment
  24. Veterinarians even have a name for injuries resulting from cats falling from heights of 23–30 feet (7-9 meters): High-rise syndrome
  25. Cats have an amazing ability to land on their feet called the righting response sometimes making it safer for the cat to fall from a greater height (since they can land on their feet if the response kicks in)
  26. Cats can jump around 4-5 feet (122-170 centimeters) which comes around to roughly 5 times its height. This is the only truly safe height for a cat to land from but only if they land on their feet
  27. Cats have around 24 whiskers on their cheeks (12 on each side) but if you count all the whiskers above the eyes and even on their front paws the total comes out to 48-56 whiskers per cat
  28. Cats can see better in the dark than humans and have wider peripheral vision but don’t see color as well as us
  29. A cat’s ear hairs keeps dust out of the ears and helps direct sound
  30. Cats also have homing instincts like dogs but there is no established scientific explanation why
  31. Cat jaws can’t move sideways
  32. Adult cats have 30 teeth
  33. Kittens are born without teeth but grow 26 baby teeth that get replaced by their adult teeth
  34. Female cats tend to be right-handed while males are mostly left-handed (or pawed)
  35. Claws on the back paws of a cat don’t retract so they are usually shorter
  36. Cats can have as much as 130,000 hairs per square inch
  37. Cats can make over 100 distinct sounds
  38. The record for world’s oldest cat is 38 years and 3 days
  39. Cats can give birth to anywhere from 1 to 9 kittens. The largest recorded litter of cats is 19 (15 survived)
  40. Cats have 230-350 bones in their body, humans have 206
  41. Cat nose prints are unique like human finger prints
  42. Foods you should never give cats include: onions, garlic, chives, grapes, raisins, chocolate, green tomatoes, raw potatoes, alcohol, coffee beans or anything with caffeine, dairy products made for human consumption (including cow milk, despite what cartoons taught you), and most human foods in general (especially processed foods)
  43. There are many house plants that are toxic to cats
  44. A single pair of cats will not multiply to produce 420,000 descendants within 7 years. A more realistic number would be around 100-400 in 5 years under decent conditions
  45. Stray cats live around 5 years on average if they belong to community of cats but many live longer
  46. Cats that wander outside live shorter lives than completely indoor cats by 2-3 years
  47. The mortality rate for feral kittens is around 75%
  48. Cats can sense earthquakes way before humans. One geologist predicted two California earthquakes by counting lost cat ads


  1. There are an estimated 600 million domesticated cats around the world (220 million pets and 480 million strays)
  2. There are 73 different cat breeds according to the International Cat Association
  3. Every year at least 400,000 people get bitten by cats in the United States and 66,000 hospital emergency visits as a result of cat bites


  1. Cats might rub against you not just to show affection but to mark you as territory with their scent
  2. Cats only meow at humans mostly. For other cats they use mating calls, purrs, hisses, or yowls
  3. Cats spend anywhere from 33% to 50% of their waking hours grooming


  1. The word “puss” and the diminutive form with a “-y” come from Germanic languages as early as the 1520s. It’s thought to come from the famous “pspsps” to call cats or the hissing sounds they make. It didn’t take long for the words to be used as slang for women and their genitals. Supposedly because cats are also soft, warm, and fuzzy (sorry)
  2. The word cat comes from the Latin catus meaning domestic cat while the Latin word feles, as in feline, means wild cat