According to a new study in Japan, cats can learn and identify each other’s names from their companions. After studying 48 cats who lived with at least two other pets, scientists at Kyoto University made the discovery.
The study used cognitive decoding to determine the cognitive abilities of cats. All cats were shown a photo of a cat they shared with, and the cats’ responses were monitored every time a name or completely unrelated was called.
The scientists conducted the tests for the cats one at a time individually. The scientists found that if a cat stared at a photograph for long enough, it indicated that the cat knew its real name.
This Is The First Evidence Of Cats Being Able To Recognize Human Utterances
The domestic cats were more likely to stare at photos whose names did not match those of the animals they were looking at. Researchers believe this indicated an “expectancy violation” effect.
According to the study, one cat “completed only one trial before running out of the room and climbing out.”
The conclusion shows that cats’ responses depend by the number of household members. “Cats who have more family members tend to be more attentive to the monitor in an incongruent situation.”
They found out that cats who had lived with their families for a longer time received more attention when their name-face relationship was not compatible.
According to the study results, cats might be able to learn names by watching human interactions. This study with domestic cats showed that they could recognize the names of fellow pets in the same household and even the names of humans in the family.
This is the only proof of cats’ ability to link humans and their names. Scientists are not sure what the cat’s motivations are behind their ability to remember names.
One possible explanation is competition. According to the study, a cat may get food when her owner calls her name, but not when she calls another cat.
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