Cats are considered particularly clean animals, as they regularly and extensively clean themselves. Dogs seem to be different - they usually only lick themselves when they're injured or they itch. The cat washing is not only the hygiene.
The simple answer to the question of why cats clean themselves is because they can. The cat's tongue is covered with fine barbs, like a cloth with integrated brush. In addition, the velvet paws are very articulated and pliable than dogs, so they arrive more easily to almost any desired body site. In addition, the domestication of Stubentiger is not as long ago as in dogs, so that the descendants of the Falzkatze have preserved a certain independence from man.
Kittens learn to cleanse their mother
When kittens are born, they can not brush themselves yet. The mother cat licks them clean and stimulates the digestion of the kittens by massaging their bellies with their tongue. At about four weeks, the kittens begin to mimic their mommy and clean themselves and master the catwash at about six weeks like the grown-ups.
The fur noses often follow a certain sequence, for example, first wash the face with their paws, then the ears are your turn. Then the front legs are cleaned, the shoulders and flanks, the genital area, the hind legs and the tail. The sequence of this ritual may vary from cat to cat and sometimes only in parts, depending on what the maid has priority.
Not just cleanliness: When cats clean themselves
Cats do not just brush their hair to get rid of dirt, loose hair and parasites. By licking, they stimulate the sebaceous glands, which are located at the hair roots. This is fat but instead, which impregnates the coat, so waterproof. So the animals are protected in wet weather from soaking and cooling - which does not mean, however, that they like to get wet, even if the water rolls off them. The saliva on the coat also serves to regulate the temperature in summer; when it evaporates, coldness occurs and the cat is less likely to get a heat stroke.
However, this method only helps if it is not too hot and your velvet paw gets enough to drink. Cats can not sweat like humans because they have few sweat glands, only a few on the paws and chin. Although dogs have few sweat glands, they do have the natural habit of cooling off by panting - a cat usually only hens when it's ill, and should go to the vet.
Cat wash calms nervous velvet paws
When they clean themselves, it's also a wellness treatment for the fur noses. The cat wash relaxes and soothes the tummy tigers and relieves stress. Moreover, the Mie distributes her own scent on her coat, which is familiar to her and therefore gives her a feeling of security. Sometimes you can watch a cat suddenly brushing from one second to the next - this is a so-called skip action.
This usually happens when the velvet paw is in a conflict situation, for example, because it encounters a foreign conspecifics and can not avoid this. Then she does not know if she should attack or flee, and cleans herself instead. So, on the one hand, it calms down, on the other hand, it allows you to spend time until the conflict situation has dissolved into pleasure. Last but not least, the mutual cleaning in cats also serves the social bond.
Why dogs do not clean themselves: Possible reasons
But why are dogs so different from cats when it comes to their own body hygiene? One reason is for sure that they are not as flexible as velvet paws and therefore they do not come everywhere with their tongue. In addition, the dog tongue is structured differently than the cat tongue and "brushes" the dog fur not so good. Furthermore, dogs are more closely tied to humans due to their long history of domestication and their breeding and therefore less dependent on taking care of their coat all by themselves.
Hunting habits are different
In addition, there is the different hunting behavior of dog and cat. The velvet paws lurk on their prey, stalking them slowly and then start a surprise attack by suddenly jumping on their prey and hold them with his paws. Camouflage is important to them so that the prey animals do not notice the cat prematurely, so they must not smell too intense, apart from their fine odor. Cats are not just predators, they are also prey animals, and too much smell could tell their natural enemies where they are.
Dogs do not hunt alone, but often in packs - unlike the tomb tigers - together they are strong. In addition, they are originally good and fast endurance runners. They do not lurk their prey and stalk inconspicuously, but rush after her until they have caught up with her or the prey is so exhausted that the four-legged friend can easily catch it. So dogs are not dependent on being as odorless as possible. In addition, the four-legged smells, which act on our human noses very severe to unpleasant, do not perceive as a stench. They communicate a lot about smells and can read whole stories from them. This means that dogs just like to smell a bit more intense.