A cat's sense of hearing is linked to its working knowledge of Physics. Scientists established felines have the ability to "see" hidden objects with an acute sense of sound.
Researchers at Japan's Kyoto University determined that cats' sense of hearing is intuition grounded on Physics. Their ability to predict the presence of objects is also linked to an instinctive response to sound. This inherited trait is likely developed in the wild.
Cat Intuition Is Based On Science
Thirty cats were tested to see if they can anticipate the presence of objects in a box, based on the sound it makes when shaken. The experiment also wanted to find patterns in the cats' expectations once the box is flipped.
The experimenter shook a container in front of the cats. In the trials, a rattling sound may or may not accompany the shaking. The sound (or lack of it) does not indicate if the container is empty or not, though. The box was flipped after being shaken; an object may or may not drop out of it.
The test was set up to simulate situations consistent and contrary to the laws of Physics. Each trial may reveal a rattling box with contents, a quiet box without contents, a rattling box that's empty when flipped, or a quiet box that drops an object.
Cat Logic Confirmed
The cats looked longer at the rattling containers, suggesting they have the ability to infer the presence of objects based on hearing. Phys Org noted the cats also stared at the box when the effects were incongruent with the cause, such as a quiet box that drops an object when flipped.
Saho Takagi is one of the researchers involved in the experiment. "Cats use a causal-logical understanding of noise or sounds to predict the appearance of invisible objects," she said.
UPI reports this ability is also determined by cats' hunting practices. In the wild, they often hunt at night, when visibility is limited. Felines have to rely on sound to estimate their preys' location and movements.
The same researchers are currently trying to determine if a cat's sense of hearing also enables it to guess an object's shape and size.