Are Cats Loyal? The Surprising Answer!

Cats are known to be independent and aloof. They usually don’t do what humans or other animals want them to do. They usually walk at their own pace, depending on their mood and attitude. However, cats aren’t just hardened animals that don’t appreciate affection or love. In fact, almost all cats show affection to their owners on a daily basis. But are cats loyal to their human counterparts? Dogs are well known for their loyalty, but the same is not said of cats. However, that doesn’t mean that cats don’t have the ability to be loyal to their human family members. We’ll explaine everything here.

Studies indicate that cats can be as loyal as dogs

Research is being done to help prove that cats aren’t as detached as many people think. Researchers based at Oregon State University investigated whether cats could be as loyal as dogs are to humans. What they discovered is that a cat can bond and become attached to its human companions when it feels safe.

The study found that cats use human family members as a sense of security. So when they are around their humans, they become engaged and interactive. The study also found that kittens and adult cats act similarly to babies and dogs when their humans leave them alone. Cats may not show their loyalty the way dogs do, but there’s a reason for that.

Dogs have a pack mentality. They look to a leader to know what to do and how to behave. The leader of any pack of dogs living in a household must be a human. Once leadership is established, a dog will be loyal and follow the example of its “pack leader”. This is not the case with cats. Felines are independent and do not have a pack mentality. They don’t see humans as “leaders”, but rather as peers.

This means that humans must earn the loyalty of cats by showing loyalty to them. It is a reciprocal relationship. If a cat isn’t treated with kindness and respect, they probably won’t show any kindness or respect in return. If a cat is largely ignored, it will likely ignore everyone in the house.

Man cuddling his adult cat
Image reproduced with the kind permission of Shutterstock

The loyalty of cats is not the same as that of dogs

It should be noted that cats do not show loyalty in the same way dogs do. While a dog will avoid someone who is mean to its owner, a cat doesn’t seem to have the social skills to recognize that wrongdoing has taken place. Live Science sheds light on a study this shows that cats are too socially inept to be loyal in a situation where their human companion is in danger or has been looked down upon in some way.

Cats may not show loyalty when it comes to defending their owners, but they do so in many other ways. For example, they might be the first to greet you at the coffee machine when you wake up in the morning. They may never let you hang out on the couch without snuggling into your lap. They can “talk” to you while you prepare dinner in the kitchen each evening. They may even sleep loyally at the foot of your bed each night.

How to Encourage Your Cat’s Loyalty

You cannot retain your cat. However, you can encourage loyalty over time. First of all, always be gentle with your cat and treat it with dignity and respect. Try to remember that they are on their own with their own thoughts, especially if they are not doing what you want them to do. You don’t have to go out of your way to give your cat everything that’s available on the market, but you should make sure there’s enough litter and toys available in the house for comfort, exercise and mental stimulation.

Make sure your cat knows you are loyal to them in all facets of their life. The more secure they feel in your presence, the more loyalty they will develop towards you. Don’t pressure your cat to be affectionate or interactive. Allow them to bond with you at their own pace. Being pushy is likely to push your cat away rather than make him feel closer to you.

In conclusion

It seems that cats can be just as loyal as dogs when it comes to their human family members. However, their signs of loyalty tend to be different from those of a dog. Don’t expect your cat to turn into a guard cat, but you can expect them to show their love and loyalty through small daily behaviors.

Featured photo courtesy: Shutterstock

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