Cats Purrfect at Getting Needs Met, Study Shows

'Cry embedded in a purr' exploits human psyche, researchers say

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"One wonders how widespread these behaviors are -- is it specific to food, or do cats use the [vocalizations] for a variety of other things? They may well have a whole variety of signals and behaviors they use to try and get our attention," he said.

And why do humans put up with such blatant manipulation? According to McComb, a cat's insistence on getting its needs met, now, might be one of the things that draws humans to them.

"Cats are really quite effective in getting humans to do what they want," she said, "and we certainly tolerate it because it goes along with all those independent elements of cats, where they just go along and do their own thing."

More information

To find out more about the nature and care of the domestic cat, head to Ohio State University.

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