We define intelligence as the ability to acquire new information and to be able to retain it and utilize that knowledge in order to solve problems. It is clear that the cat is a winner in the case of all animal companions. If you put an adult cat in a room where he has never been before, you will find it examining the room and every nook and cranny. The basic research that it does provides it with valuable information regarding any threats that exist towards its survival as well as about its surroundings. Curiosity is something that cats are known for and that is what has allowed it to live the reputed nine lives that it is said to have.
The ability of cats to investigate their new environments is known to all. Research has also proven that it has a superior ability to retain that information which is superior when compared to other domestic animals. If you are to test the canine versus feline intelligence, it has been seen that, canines recall memory does not last for more than five minutes while cats remember for more than sixteen hours. Thus, their power of recall is superior to that of orangutans and monkeys.
Testing A Cat’s Cognitive Abilities
If you are to test the intellectual ability of the cats, its ability to use the learned information to solve problems is another unique trait. For instance, if you show a cat how to pull boxes on wheels, they can combine the knowledge of this new skill with their insight in order to solve new problems. It is still not known how to test and understand the full expanse of the cognitive abilities of the cat due to which owners are often surprised to find amazing levels of their cognitive abilities.
How Cats Learn
Cats are known to learn from:
- Observations – they are known to imitate humans and try out new things by trial and error.
- There are stories where the cat is known to try and turn doorknobs to open doors.
- They can even ring doorbells as well as open cupboards, turn off lights and even use the toilet.
- It has been observed that the intelligence of an adult cat can be compared to the intelligence of a two or a three year old child.
- It is known how children can manipulate their parents even at such an age and that is the same case with cats as well.
Knowing Their Limitations
Even if the cat is most intelligent of all the domestic animals, one needs to be clear about the limitations of their intelligence as well. A cat cannot make plans for the future and neither can it ponder on past events. An owner cannot punish a cat for doing something that it did even a few minutes before. The cat will be unable to establish the connection between the action and the punishment if the two are not done immediately. Again, a cat cannot harbor spite and take revenge on their own.