Webinar! The Social Lives of Cats

The social lives of cats: What science says about cat behavior and the human-cat bond

Although domestic cats and humans have lived with one another for thousands of years, relatively little scientific research has been conducted with cats- especially when compared to the body of research on the domestic dog. Many questions regarding cat behavior, especially their social behavior with humans, remain unanswered. Currently, pet cats outnumber dogs by almost 10 million in the US alone and millions of cats live in shelters or are free-roaming outdoors. Over 3.4 million cats enter already crowded shelters each year and of those surrendered by owners, approximately 27% are surrendered due to behavioral issues or incompatibility between cat and owner. Therefore, there are many applied benefits from future research in this area. This talk will cover our scientific understanding of various aspects of cat behavior and cognition and current research being conducted in this area. We will also discuss ways to utilize this knowledge to improve cat welfare and strengthen the human-cat bond.

KristynHeadshot2_ETrainingSpeaker: Kristyn Vitale Shreve
When:
Live Webinar August 9th, 2016, 8:00 PM EDT, Midnight UTC/GMT
Cost: $25.00
Click here to register for the lecture! 

Building the Bond Between Cats and People

New Media Mention: Kym Pokorny, Oregon’s Agricultural Progress, Summer 2016
Link to full story

hatcatsShreve is a National Science Foundation graduate fellow pursuing a Ph.D. in animal sciences at Oregon State University. As part of Monique Udell’s Human-Animal Interaction lab, Shreve’s research focuses on cat behavior, cognition, and human-cat interactions. She’s had her share of people wonder why—or even if—cats can be trained and socialized……

To read the rest of the article click here!

 

Kitten Training Classes? New Research Suggests Cat Stereotypes Are Just That

New Media Mention: Kyle Bunnell, The Corvallis Advocate June 22, 2016
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CA_June-23_cover2Kristyn Shreve, a graduate research fellow in OSU’s Human-Animal Interaction Lab, or HAI Lab, loves cats. She plays with them, talks to them, and, most importantly, studies them. It turns out we know rather little about cat cognition. Science has a lot left to tell us about the best way to communicate with our feline friends, including whether or not they even consider us friends at all. And this is where the research at the HAI Lab comes in. A study they are currently conducting aims to shed some light on the ways in which cats and humans socialize with one another. Not only that, but as part of the study, free kitten-training classes are given, providing a foundation for communication between owners and cats. This is research that has not been done before, and, looking at the numbers, is sorely needed…….

To read the rest of the article click here!

 

What We Understand about Cats and What They Understand about Us

New Media Mention: Felicity Muth, Scientific American March 30, 2016
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A big part of cats’ lives are spent around their human owners, yet scientists are just starting to understand what they think of us

 

stoshpetIn my last post I introduced the topic of cat cognition and what we broadly know about how these animals think. In this post I’m going to talk more specifically about what we understand about cats’ interactions with the animal they spend most time with: us….

To read the rest of the article click here! 

What’s Going On in Your Cat’s Head?

New Media Mention: Felicity Muth, Scientific American March 29, 2016
Link to full story 

Cats are often depicted as being less friendly, cooperative and caring than dogs, but what’s really going on in your cat’s head?

Spirit meet cameraUnsurprisingly, scientists use dogs in behavioural experiments a lot more often than cats. There are whole ‘canine cognition’ lab groups and conferences, which has led to a much greater understanding of our canine friends (see for example the blog ‘Dog Spies’). Cats are generally less cooperative and more nervous in social situations, meaning it’s difficult to use them in experiments. However, a recent paper in Animal Cognition by Shreve & Udell at Oregon State University reviewed what we do know about our (sometimes unfriendly) friends regarding how they think. I’m going to divide what we know about cat cognition into two main areas over two posts: firstly, what we know about cat cognition per se and secondly cat cognition that relates to their relationship with humans…..

To read the rest of the article click here!