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Common Myths About Cats

August 1 2023

Our feline pals have managed to collect quite a plethora of myths and legends over the past centuries. While some are clearly old wives tales, others still cause confusion today. In fact, there are quite a few common misconceptions floating around about Fluffy. A Hendersonville, NC vet goes over some of them below.

Only Happy Kitties Purr

We all know that Fluffy turns her motor on when she’s feeling content and/or cuddly. However, that isn’t the only time cats purr. Our feline buddies also purr when they are sick or scared, likely as a way to soothe themselves. Purrs also help promote healing: cats vibrate at frequencies that have been shown to promote tissue growth.   

Black Cats Are Bad Luck

The belief that black cats are unlucky dates back to the medieval ages. Fluffy just hasn’t been able to shake those false rumors. It doesn’t help much that black cats continue to be a motif in Halloween décor, and are often lumped in with witches, ghosts, and other scary icons.

Cats Have Nine Lives

Our feline friends definitely only get one life. However, it’s not hard to see why this rumor is so widespread. Fluffy certainly does have a knack for close calls. This, of course, is closely related to her talent for getting into mischief in the first place. 

Cats are Dangerous for Pregnant Women

There is a bit of truth to this one. Cats can carry toxoplasmosis, which can be dangerous to unborn babies. However, taking some simple precautions, like wearing gloves and washing your hands thoroughly after changing cat litter—or having someone else take over– will greatly reduce the risk. There’s absolutely no need to rehome Fluffy! Ask your veterinarian for more information.

Kitties Love Milk

This may very well be the most widespread myth about Fluffy. All of those iconic images about kitties drinking milk certainly haven’t helped! The truth is, most of our furry pals are lactose-intolerant. As soon as kittens stop nursing, they stop producing lactase, which is the enzyme needed to digest milk. Some kitties can have small amounts of milk, but many get upset tummies after having even a small amount. Err on the side of caution, and get your furball some kitty milk instead of the real stuff.

Do you have questions about your cat’s health or behavior? Contact us, your Hendersonville, NC pet hospital, anytime.