If someone was talking at you – using your name and everything, there’s no doubt they are talking directly to you – and instead of replying, you turned around and showed them your actual arsehole, that would probably be considered rude. Showing people where you shit from is not usually taken very well, at least not in my experience, anyway.
This is what cats do – they flash their butt-hoops at you on the regs, and as such, they’re considered a bit rude. Stupid dogs run at you and climb all over you and lick you so they’re considered friendly. Cats get the bad reputation, dogs get the good one, and I think this is unfair. I’ve backed cats 100%, but no matter how much I extol the virtues of those fluffy little critters, they’re the ones that get all the cusstard.
BUT NOT ANYMORE, cat-haters. A bunch of scientists (who may or may not also be cats) have done some research into cats, in an attempt to prove once and for all whether they are friendly or not. Turns out they are.
The scientists from Oregon State University catnapped 50 cats from both people’s houses and shelters and then stuck ‘em in a room without food, toys or humans for a couple of hours. They then gave the cats four different stimuli: food, human interaction, scent and toys, and recorded their behavior. The results made me happy: most cats preferred human social interaction.
37% preferred food, which is fine – food is pretty good and I think I prefer it to cats – but the majority were keen on hanging out with us apes, which is lovely.
The researchers said: "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."
So cats do actually like you. They are showing you their bums out of affection, which has always been my excuse. Now maybe finally I’ll be allowed back to the next local speed dating event.