Cat News
  • iconCommon pesticide inhibits brain development in frogs
    New research reveals that low doses of a commonly used pesticide potentially harm the Northern Leopard frog by inhibiting their brain development.
  • iconSniffing out error in detection dog data
    New research finds three alternative answers beyond errors in handler or dog training that can explain why dogs trained to identify scat for conservation purposes sometimes collect non-target scats.
  • iconChemicals linked to endocrine disorder in older pet cats
    New research suggests that there may be a link between higher levels of per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) in the environment and higher levels of hyperthyroidism in pet cats as they age.
  • iconParasite makes quick exit when researchers remove the handbrake
    Researchers have discovered a way to halt the invasion of the toxoplasmosis-causing parasite into cells, depriving the parasite of a key factor necessary for its growth. The findings are a key step in getting closer to a vaccine to protect pregnant women from the parasite Toxoplasma gondii, which carries a serious risk of miscarriage or birth defects.
  • iconInvasive snakes 'hitchhiking' on planes
    Scientists have discovered why brown tree snakes have become one of the most successful invasive species. The research team has been studying why a type of cat-eyed snake has been so effective at devastating native bird populations on the island of Guam.
  • iconIn the battle of cats vs. rats, the rats are winning
    New research finds that contrary to popular opinion, cats are not good predators of rats. The study -- the first to document interactions between feral cats and a wild rat colony -- shows that rats actively avoid cats, and only recorded two rat kills in 79 days. The findings add to growing evidence that any benefit of using cats to control city rats is outweighed by the threat they pose to birds and other urban wildlife.
  • iconHave asthma and a pet? Re-homing your cat or dog may not be necessary
    A study analyzed environmental exposures, like pet and secondhand smoke, to determine if they have a role in asthma control among children whose asthma is managed per NAEPP (EPR-3) guidelines. Researchers found that once asthma guidelines are followed, environmental exposures to pets or secondhand smoke were not significant factors in overall asthma improvement over time.
  • iconGlyphosate found in cat and dog food
    A new study finds that glyphosate, the active herbicidal ingredient in widely used weed killers like Roundup, was present at low levels in a variety of dog and cat foods the researchers purchased at stores. Before you go switching Fido or Fluffy's favorite brand, however, be aware that the amounts of the herbicide found correspond to levels currently considered safe for humans.
  • iconGenome-wide study confirms six tiger subspecies
    Fewer than 4,000 free-ranging tigers remain in the wild. Efforts to protect these remaining tigers have also been stymied by uncertainty about whether they represent six, five or only two subspecies. Now, researchers who've analyzed the complete genomes of 32 representative tiger specimens confirm that tigers indeed fall into six genetically distinct groups.
  • iconHow to feed a cat: Consensus statement to the veterinary community
    The American Association of Feline Practitioners (AAFP) today released the AAFP Consensus Statement, 'Feline Feeding Programs: Addressing Behavioral Needs to Improve Feline Health and Wellbeing' and accompanying client brochure to the veterinary community. The Consensus Statement, published in the Journal of Feline Medicine and Surgery, explores the medical, social, and emotional problems that can result from the manner in which most cats are currently fed.
  • iconSaber-toothed cats with oral injuries ate softer foods
    Saber-toothed cats, the large felid predators that once roamed Southern California, may have eaten softer foods after suffering oral injuries, according to a new study. Microscopic damage patterns on teeth from fossilized cats show the injured predators transitioned to seeking softer prey, like flesh instead of bone, which healthy cats may have provided for them, according to the study.
  • iconAustralian mammals at greatest risk from cats and foxes
    New research has revealed which Australian mammals are most vulnerable to cats and foxes, and many much-loved potoroos, bandicoots and bettongs, as well as native rodents, are at the top of the list.
  • iconHow catnip makes the chemical that causes cats to go crazy
    Researchers have shed light on how catnip -- also known as catmint -- produces the chemical that sends cats into a state of wanton abandon.
  • iconGenetics of California mountain lions: Research to inform future conservation
    Mountain lions in California exhibited strong population genetic structure, and some California populations had extremely low levels of genetic diversity, with some exhibiting estimates as low as the endangered Florida panther.
  • iconOverweight dogs may live shorter lives
    New research reveals overweight dogs are more likely to have shorter lives than those at ideal body weights.
  • iconRoaming cats prey on their owners' minds
    Many cat owners worry about their pets wandering the streets, but perceive cats hunting mice and birds to be unavoidable instinct, researchers have found.
  • iconSkull scans tell tale of how world's first dogs caught their prey
    Analysis of the skulls of lions, wolves and hyenas has helped scientists uncover how prehistoric dogs hunted 40 million years ago.
  • iconIdled farmland presents habitat restoration opportunities in San Joaquin Desert
    Most of the native habitat in California's San Joaquin Desert has been converted to row crops and orchards, leaving 35 threatened or endangered species confined to isolated patches of habitat. A new study looked at the conservation potential of marginal farmland in the San Joaquin Desert and found that restoration of fallowed farmland could play a crucial role in habitat protection and restoration strategies for the blunt-nosed leopard lizard and other endangered species.
  • iconUrbanization may hold key to tiger survival
    A new study says the future of tigers in Asia is linked to the path of demographic transition -- for humans.
  • iconEmerging significance of gammaherpesvirus and morbillivirus infections in cats
    Emerging infectious diseases comprise a substantial fraction of important human infections, with potentially devastating global health and economic impacts. A 2008 paper in Nature described the emergence of no fewer than 335 infectious diseases in the global human population between 1940 and 2004. In the veterinary field, just as in the medical field, advanced molecular techniques and sophisticated computer-based algorithms for genetic sequence assembly and analysis have revolutionized infectious disease research.
  • iconCopy cats: When is a bobcat not a bobcat?
    Biologists, who have publicly solicited images of wild cats for their research, have answered that question. Their recently published study explains how hard it can be when it comes to wildlife classification -- even experts have difficulty agreeing on whether a cat in a picture is a bobcat or a lynx.
  • iconRoad proximity may boost songbird nest success in tropics
    In the world's temperate regions, proximity to roads usually reduces the reproductive success of birds, thanks to predators that gravitate toward habitat edges. However, the factors affecting bird nest success are much less studied in the tropics -- so does this pattern hold true? New research shows that interactions between roads, nesting birds, and their predators may unfold differently in Southeast Asia.
  • iconClimate change may destroy tiger's home
    A scientist says the last coastal stronghold of an iconic predator, the endangered Bengal tiger, could be destroyed by climate change and rising sea levels over the next 50 years.
  • iconNew AI toolkit is the 'scientist that never sleeps'
    Researchers have developed a new AI-driven platform that can analyze how pathogens infect our cells with the precision of a trained biologist.
  • iconHuman antiviral 'GS-441524' shows great promise against infectious disease in cats
    The emergence of exotic diseases such as Ebola and SARS (severe acute respiratory syndrome) in people has prompted intensive research into new drug treatments, and this is indirectly bringing benefit to cats.
  • iconBartonella and sudden-onset adolescent schizophrenia
    In a new case study, researchers describe an adolescent human patient diagnosed with rapid onset schizophrenia who was found instead to have a Bartonella henselae infection (associated with cat scratch fever).
  • iconMany pet owners keen to have vegan pets
    A growing number of pet owners is interested in feeding their pets plant-based diets.
  • iconPeople who feed birds impact conservation
    Researchers analyzed how people who feed birds notice and respond to natural events at their feeders by collaborating with Project FeederWatch, a program that engages more than 25,000 people to observe and collect data on their backyard birds.
  • iconThe bigger the evolutionary jump, the more lethal cross-species diseases could be
    Some diseases which are fatal in one species can cause only mild discomfort in another -- but it's hard for scientists to predict how lethal a disease will be if it leaps across species. However, a new article indicates that the evolutionary relationship between infected hosts can predict the impact of diseases.
  • iconTiger geckos in Vietnam could be the next species sold into extinction
    While information about the conservation status of the tiger gecko species is largely missing, these Asian lizards are already particularly vulnerable to extinction. A study provides an overview of their domestic and international trade with a focus on species native to Vietnam. By providing further knowledge about the species abundance and threats for the Vietnamese Cat Ba tiger gecko, the research team urges for strict conservation measures.
  • iconPoll: Pets help older adults cope with health issues, get active and connect with others
    Pets help older adults cope with mental and physical health issues, according to a new national poll. But pets can also bring concerns, and some people may even put their animals' needs ahead of their own health, the poll finds. Three-quarters of pet owners aged 50 to 80 say their animals reduce their stress and give them a sense of purpose. But 18 percent also said having one puts a strain on their budget.
  • iconHello, kitty: Cats recognize their own names, according to new Japanese research
    Pet cats can recognize their own names if their names are used regularly by their owners, according to new results. Projects to understand simple social behaviors like name recognition in cats may give clues to how we humans became social. Both humans and cats have evolved through the process of self-domestication, where the population rewards certain traits that then become increasingly common in future generations.
  • iconFossils found in museum drawer in Kenya belong to gigantic carnivore
    Paleontologists have discovered a new species of meat-eating mammal larger than any big cat stalking the world today. Larger than a polar bear, with a skull as large as that of a rhinoceros and enormous piercing canine teeth, this massive carnivore would have been an intimidating part of the eastern African ecosystems occupied by early apes and monkeys.
  • iconDrug can reverse hyperactivity induced by parasitic infection
    When rodents get infected by Toxoplasma gondii, the single-celled brain parasite that causes toxoplasmosis, they become hyperactive risk-takers. Researchers show for the first time that it's possible to reverse that behavioral change.
  • iconHomemade cat food diets could be risky
    A new study finds most homemade cat food recipes are unlikely to provide cats all their essential nutrients.
  • iconLions vs. porcupines
    Lions can bring down wildebeests and giraffes, but when they try to hunt porcupines, the spiky rodents often come out on top. When lions attack porcupines (it's usually young male lions that make that mistake), the porcupine's spines can seriously injure the lion. These injuries can make it impossible for the lions to hunt normally, leading them to hunt livestock or even humans. This study is a deep dive into lion-porcupine interactions over the centuries.
  • iconGrumpy Cat, Internet Celebrity With a Piercing Look of Contempt, Is Dead at 7
    The frowning feline whose permanent scowl spoke for all of us in our darkest moments died in the arms of her “mommy” on Tuesday, her family said.
  • iconHow Grumpy Cat Charmed Fans With Her Famous Scowl
    Grumpy Cat, an internet celebrity because of her upset facial expression, died from complications that arose from a urinary tract infection. She was 7.
  • iconSaving Charlie: A Rush to Rescue Stranded Cats and Dogs from Oklahoma Floods
    Firefighters and animal rescuers made their way into a flooded town in eastern Oklahoma, seeking the pets that fleeing residents had left behind.
  • iconThai dinosaur is a cousin of T. rex
    Scientists have identified two new dinosaur species. They analyzed fossil finds that were already discovered 30 years ago in Thailand. Both species are distant relatives of T. rex, but with a somewhat more primitive structure. They were efficient predators.
  • iconIn hot pursuit of dinosaurs: Tracking extinct species on ancient Earth via biogeography
    Identifying the movements of extinct species from millions of years ago can provide insights into ancient migration routes, interaction between species, and the movement of continents.
  • iconCat Declawing Ban Is Passed by N.Y. Lawmakers
    The measure is for people who “think their furniture is more important than their cat,” a supporter said. Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo would have to sign it.
  • iconPotential new disease threats for wild snow leopards
    The first study to investigate disease threats to wild snow leopards has detected that exposure to infections may pose a threat to this highly vulnerable species, as well as local people and their livestock. Biologists detected antibodies in the blood of wild cats to important pathogens that can also infect humans and other species.
  • iconDiabetes can be detected in gut of cats
    Diabetes patients show reduced gut bacterial diversity, and now researchers have learned that the same is true of cats. The researchers behind the new study hope to be able to use cats as a model for future studies of the disease.
  • iconThe benefits of being different
    Six different color morphs of the elusive Asiatic golden cat have been discovered in Northeast India -- with the findings being hailed as 'an evolutionary puzzle' -- as the world's greatest number of different colored wild cat species in one area are reported.
  • iconBiological evolution inspires machine learning
    Evolution allows life to explore almost limitless diversity and complexity. Scientists hope to recreate such open-endedness in the laboratory or in computer simulations, but even sophisticated computational techniques like machine learning and artificial intelligence can't provide the open-ended tinkering associated with evolution. Here, common barriers to open-endedness in computation and biology were compared, to see how the two realms might inform each other, and ultimately enable machine learning to design and create open-ended evolvable systems.
  • iconWhen Your Dog (or Cat) Gets That Look
    Readers comment on the almost-human facial expressions of dogs and cats.
  • iconDangerous brain parasite 'orders in' for dinner
    Researchers have discovered how toxoplasma gondii, a single-celled parasite, maintains a steady supply of nutrients while replicating inside of its host cell: it calls for delivery.
  • iconDoes Fluffy Really Want to Be an Adventure Cat?
    With a leash and a harness, any feline can safely explore the great outdoors. But owners need to be mindful of signs of stress.
  • iconParasitology: On filaments and fountains
    Microbiologists have shown that Toxoplasma gondii, the parasite that is responsible for toxoplasmosis, utilizes at least two modes of locomotion during its infection cycle.
  • iconWhat Do Teenagers Need? Ask the Family Dog
    Pets provide comforts that seem tailor-made for the stresses of normal adolescent development.
  • icon‘The Cat Rescuers’ Review: A Portrait of New York’s Street Cats and Their Loyal Humans
    New York is teeming with stray cats. Meet the people trying to do something about it.
  • iconPet tags link widely used flame retardant to hyperthyroidism in cats
    Feline hyperthyroidism is the most common endocrine-related disease of older cats, and its prevalence has skyrocketed since the first case was diagnosed in 1979. At the same time, new household flame retardants were introduced, and recently, scientists have suspected a link. Now, researchers have associated hyperthyroidism with another class of flame retardants, using silicone pet tags similar to the popular wristbands that many people wear for charitable causes.
  • iconHouse mouse shapes Toxoplasma gondii distribution
    The humble house mouse has dramatically shaped parasitic Toxoplasma gondii populations in West Africa and around the world, according to new research. As different strains affect their hosts differently, the research provides insights into which populations are infecting humans and animals and suggests mechanisms for their intercontinental spread.
  • iconResearchers track how cats' weights change over time
    Researchers have accessed data on more than 19 million cats and have learned that most cats continue to put on weight as they age.
  • iconPredators' fear of humans ripples through wildlife communities, emboldening rodents
    Giving credence to the saying, 'While the cat's away, the mice will play,' a new study indicates that pumas and medium-sized carnivores lie low when they sense the presence of humans, which frees up the landscape for rodents to forage more brazenly.
  • iconTourist photographs are a cheap and effective way to survey wildlife
    Tourists on safari can provide wildlife monitoring data comparable to traditional surveying methods, suggests new research. The researchers analyzed 25,000 photographs from 26 tour groups to survey the population densities of five top predators (lions, leopards, cheetahs, spotted hyenas, and wild dogs) in northern Botswana, making it one of the first studies to use tourist photographic data for this purpose.
  • iconNew York State Bans Cat Declawing
    Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo signed the anti-declawing bill into law on Monday. New York is the first state in the country to ban the practice.
  • iconUnearthed Steinbeck Short Story Isn’t at All Like ‘Grapes of Wrath’
    The quintessentially American author wrote pieces for a Paris newspaper in the 1950s. Now, one of those — about a nervous chef and a magnificent cat — is being published in English for the first time.
  • iconIntense look at La Brea Tar Pits explains why we have coyotes, not saber-toothed cats
    The most detailed study to date of ancient predators trapped in the La Brea Tar Pits is helping Americans understand why today we're dealing with coyotes dumping over garbage cans and not saber-toothed cats ripping our arms off.