Think your cat misses you when you're away? You're wrong

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Think your cat misses you when you're away? You're wrong
Yup, the truth does hurt - your cat doesn't really need you and she doesn't care when you're away, says a new study conducted at England’s University of Lincoln and published in the PLOS One journal.

The study said that cats have far less attachment to their owners than dogs, and do not need their human companions to feel safe and protected.

Here's what the scientists in England said:

The procedure comprised of two conditions: modified (A) and reversed modified (B) version of the Ainsworth SST both consisting of nine 3 minute episodes in which the cat is either alone or with the owner and/or a stranger in order to assess how it responds to a series of procedures designed to alter the level and form of social support available to it, or trigger seeking out of an attachment figure (see Table 1 for details of the procedures and “Data collection and analysis plan” below for details of the specific predictions made in different circumstances if a cat is securely attached to its owner).

Meaning, in easy speak terms:

1. The researchers placed several cats in different rooms and watched how they reacted with their owners, with strangers and alone.

2. They tested a parameter they called, "separation anxiety" -- the three characteristics of attachment:
  • the amount of contact a cat would like to have to whoever was inside the room
  • the level of its passive behavior
  • and signs of distress when her owner is not there.

After the experiment, the scientists were shocked that the amount of "separation anxiety" was... absolutely zero!

In an article from Telegraph, study author Daniel Mills said, “Although our cats were more vocal when the owner rather than the stranger left them with the other individual, we didn’t see any additional evidence to suggest that the bond between a cat and its owner is one of secure attachment,”

“Domestic cats are much more autonomous when it comes to coping with unusual situations,” he added.

So, why does your cat meow when she sees you? The researchers said these meows are not signs of longings, but rather a “learned response” and or a sign of frustration. 


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