Do Cats Prefer People or Food? Surprising Study Will Have You Purring

Do Cats Prefer People or Food? Surprising Study Will Have You Purring

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Even though cat lovers will vouch for their feline friends until the day they die, cats often receive a bad rap for being perceived as less affectionate than dogs – but this new study examining their behavior proves otherwise.

An endearing report published in Behavioural Processes showed that the majority of cats preferred social interaction with humans over food – or any other stimulation, for that matter.

Researchers placed a mixture of 50 different shelter cats and household cats in a room without entertainment or stimuli; no food, no toys, and no people. After letting the cats sit for a few hours, they were presented with all three options at the same time.

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Though there was some degree of individual variability, the overwhelming majority of felines preferred to interact with the humans over food. Only 37% of the cats preferred the nourishment.

“While it has been suggested that cat sociality exists on a continuum, perhaps skewed toward independency, we have found that 50% of cats tested preferred interaction with the social stimulus even though they had a direct choice between social interaction with a human and their other most preferred stimuli from the three other stimulus categories,” the study concluded.

If you’re still skeptical over the reliability or relationship of cats to humans, just check out our cat stories – they will be sure to change your mind.

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(Photo by A. Davey, CC)

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