Cats are actually smarter than we can think and they have memories. But how much memory do you think your cat has?
Just because they are capricious does not mean that they cannot understand what is being said to them. Or that they can’t remember what is good and bad. Cats can retain memories of sights, sounds, smells, and situations that occurred years ago.
Cats can understand different words, sounds, and intonations. You can easily teach a cat its name.
Cats have memory , but just like with humans, cat memory is affected by age and some cat breeds are naturally smarter and easier to train than others.
Related to this, you may be interested in reading: 6 things you should know about your cat’s brain .
How a cat’s brain works
Cats are mammals like us and their brains work on the same basis as ours.
It has frontal, temporal, occipital and parietal lobes just like a human brain. Your brain is also made up of white and gray matter. The same five senses send information to your brain.
The most widely accepted theory about how the cat remembers things is called the neural combination theory . The cat has connections between neurons in its brain. Each neuron stores a part of a memory, and when the correct combination of neurons is activated, the cat will remember.
Cats have long-term memory
Cats in general are outstanding hunters. They have highly developed senses, such as smell, hearing, and sight. Even though they have been domesticated for centuries, they still carry the innate instincts that they have inherited from their wild ancestors.
Felines use these instincts, as well as all of their senses, to analyze, understand, and remember various details about any given situation.
How long is a cat’s memory?
Cats memory generally lasts 16 hours, research has found that a cat’s memory is comparable to that of a 2-3 year old and that they can perform complex problem solving tasks such as puzzles, mazes, etc. Learn by observation; for example, she can open doors by watching him do it and learns to hunt and grooming by watching her mother.
Although cats may not have great short-term memory, their long-term memory is truly exceptional. Cats that have had a close relationship with their human companions show strong affection and emotional bonds with those people and can remember them for a long time.
This explains why, even after being separated from their owners for a long time, when they get together, cats can still recognize the person from their past.
How is the memory of kittens
Young kittens, especially newborns, haven’t developed their full brain potential, but that doesn’t mean they aren’t creating memories. They are memorizing everything from the warmth of their mothers’ bellies to the playful fighting techniques of their siblings. These memories also help them develop survival instincts.
For kittens of all races , the first 8 weeks of a cat are the most essential to build the basis of their memories. If a wild kitten doesn’t interact with humans during this period, he may never trust them. This is also the period when a domesticated cat learns to trust and depend on its human companion.
Curiosity, playfulness, and a desire to explore help kitties create a rich base of memories early in life. These memories, along with the innate instincts, will be of great importance throughout the cat’s life.
Memory of elderly and geriatric cats
As cats get older, their memory worsens . Older cats find it difficult to remember things they knew from when they were younger, similar to older people.
Older cats lose brain cells . This causes the loss of memories and also affects the ability to analyze new things and memorize them. Some studies have shown that advancing age affects a cat’s short-term memory more than its long-term memory. In other words, it is easier for older cats to remember something from the past than to learn something new.
Older cats can suffer from feline cognitive dysfunction, a disease similar to Alzheimer’s in humans. It is caused by the deterioration of the brain, leading to a reduction in cognitive functioning .
A cat with this problem has difficulty moving, because it is easily disoriented. This disease can also affect adult feline memory and general behavior to the point of causing the cat to lose its cleaning habits, its sleeping routine and its willingness to socialize.
Stimulation to increase your cat’s memory
Luckily, there are many things you can do to help your cat maintain a good memory and mental health throughout her life.
1. Dietary supplements
You can boost your kitten’s brain performance by switching to high-quality, nutritious cat food that is rich in omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids, taurine, selenium, and vitamins C and E. These ingredients help prevent the aging of the cats. brain cells, and have strong antioxidant properties.
These supplements come with instructions on the correct dosages, are moderately affordable, and you don’t need a special prescription to buy them. Despite this last advantage, it is always safer to consult with a veterinarian before administering any supplement to your cat.
2. Natural stimulants
Instead of using dietary supplements, you can also go for natural ways to stimulate your cat’s brain and memory.
Training your cat to learn new things is a great way to exercise his brain. It can be something as simple as the command to “sit” or something as challenging as walking on a leash . Either way, getting the cat to learn and remember something new will boost its cognitive performance .
Try not to make your pet overweight . This causes health problems, and the cat becomes lazy. And we all know that a lazy cat will prefer a nap over straining to use its brain.
Lastly, fight your cat’s boredom. Sensory stimulating toys, daily play sessions, and social interaction are effective natural ways to prevent brain cell aging. Create fun new things for your cat to explore.
Do cats remember their brothers?
As you could not forget the face of your brother or sister. You may think the same is true of your cat. However, once separated, the kittens will no longer recognize their siblings. If you intend to reunite littermates separated for a long time, you will usually cause a fight.
This is because cats rely primarily on scent for recognition, not their eyes. If a cat smells an unfamiliar scent on another cat, regardless of whether they are related as a family, that cat with an unknown scent will be considered a stranger.
When the kittens are removed from the nest, they pick up the scents of their new surroundings. When two brothers who were once inseparable meet again, they will have become strangers.
Do Cats Remember People?
There is a great debate about how much cats miss their owners leaving . One study showed that some cats show signs of separation anxiety when left alone, but the ways in which they show it may not be apparent to us.
These cats were more likely to urinate out of their litter boxes or be destructive, but they don’t do it to annoy us, this behavior is a sign of loneliness and distress.
Another study showed that cats do not become attached to their owners in this way, and they respond to strangers in the home in the same way they respond to owners.
In conclusion, it is difficult to say conclusively how long cats remember their humans or how attached they are to us. However, it is noteworthy that cats have lived alongside humans for thousands of years, they have learned something to understand us and the ways in which we communicate.
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