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Legends, Myths and Facts... about Cats:

Legends........

~ It was said that a Princess of the Royal House of Siam used her cat's tail as a ring-stand while she was bathing. The kink in the tail prevented the rings from falling off and being lost.

~ Another legend accounts for both the cross-eyed feature as well as the development of the kink: Once, when all the men of Siam left their homes to defend their kingdom, just two cats - one male Siamese, 'Tien', and one female Siamese, 'Chula' - remained in order to guard Buddha's golden goblet in the sacred temple. The male cat became pretty restless and, after mating the female Siamese, left her in order to find another priest to look after the temple. The female, apparently, was so overwhelmed by the responsibility of guarding the Buddha's treasure that she never once glanced away from the goblet, wrapping her long tail around its stem to prevent theft in case she should fall asleep. As time passed waiting for Tien to return with a new master, she could no longer forstall the birth of her kittens, who all arrived with the physical characteristics that she herself had acquired during her period as watcher and guardian - a kinked tail and crossed eyes. Just occasionally, even today, kittens are born with these features - so the legends are kept alive.

Facts.........

~ Ailurophilia is the "love of cats."

In 1952, a Texas Tabby named Dusty set the record by having more than 420 kittens before having her last litter at age 18.

The largest known litter (with all surviving) was that of a Persian in South Africa named Bluebell. Bluebell gave birth to 14 kittens in one litter!

Cats have 290 bones in their bodies,and 517 muscles.

A cat has five more vertebrae in her spinal column than her human does.

Sir Isaac Newton, discoverer of the principles of gravity, also invented the cat door.

A cat will amost never "meow" at another cat. This sound is reserved for humans.

The oldest cat on record was Puss, from England, who died in 1939 just one day after her 36th birthday.(We wish we could have them all that long!)

The weirdest cat on record was a female called Mincho who went up a tree in Argentina and didn't come down again until she died six years later. While treed, she managed to have three litters with equally ambitious dads.

A group of kittens is called a "kindle."

According to the Guiness Book of World Records, the heaviest cat on record was Himmy, an Australian cat, who weighed 46 pounds, 15.25 ounces in 1986. Himmy's waist was 33 inches! The previous record-holder had been Spice, a ginger-and-white tom cat from Connecticut, who weighed 43 pounds when he died in 1977.

The tiniest cat on record was Tinker Toy from Illinois. A male Himalayan-Persian, he weighed 1 pound, 8 ounces fully grown and was 7.25" long and 2.75" tall

The richest cat in the Guinness Book of World Records is a pair of cats who inherited $415,000 in the early '60s.

The richest single cat is a white alley cat who inherited $250,000.(Now that will buy a lot of catnip!)

The Giraffe, Camel and Cat are the only animals that walk by moving both their left feet, then both their right feet, when walking.This method of walking ensures speed, agility and silence.

Cats don't see "detail" very well. To them,their person may appear hazy when standing in front of them.

Cats need 1/6th the amount of light that humans do to see.Their night vision is amazing!

Abraham Lincoln loved cats.He had four of them while he lived in the White House.

Napoleon was terrified of cats!

A cat cannot see directly under its nose.This is why the cat cannot seem to find tidbits on the floor

Sir Isaac Newton is not only credited with the laws of gravity but is also credited with inventing the cat flap.

If your cat is near you, and her tail is quivering, this is the greatest expression of love your cat can give you.If her tail starts thrashing, her mood has changed --- Time to distance yourself from her.

Cats wag their tails when it is in a stage of conflict.The cat wants to do two things at once, but each impulse blocks the other. For example: If your cat is in the doorway wanting to go outside, and you open the door to find it raining, the cat's tail will wag because of internal conflict. The cat wants to go outside, but doesn't want to go into the rain. Once the cat makes a decision and either returns to the house or leaves into the rain, the tail will immediately stop wagging.

The nose pad of a cat is ridged in a pattern that is unique, just like the fingerprint of a human.

Cats do not think that they are little people. They think that we are big cats. This influences their behavior in many ways

Myths......

Cats have an almost supernatural mystique. Perhaps it is their independent nature that prompts the belief that cats have special powers, or maybe it's their intense, unblinking stare that sometimes spooks people. Who knows? At any rate, cats are the subject of many superstitions that have grown up over the years. Here are a few notable examples:

If a black cat crosses your path, evil will soon befall you. (In England, however, the evil can be cancelled if you spit right away.)

If a cat leaves home while a person is sick and cannot be coaxed back, the person will die.

If a cat puts its paw behind its ear when it scratches (which it almost always does), rain is on the way.

Kittens born in the month of May will bring snakes into the house.

If you wake up in the morning and see cats playing, the rest of the day will be wasted.

In the days of the great sailing ships, sailors always took a cat on board the boat. On very calm days when no wind filled the sails, they would lock the cat in a cupboard. This would bring a breeze.

To meet a cat at midnight is to meet Satan, himself.

Never leave a cat alone with an infant. The cat will suck the breath right out of the child.

Tortoiseshell cats are considered lucky in Great Britain.

If cats run around wildly, then expect a wind to blow up.

If a cat sneezes near the bride-to-be on the morning of the wedding, she will have a happy life.

Stroking the tail of a black cat will cure a sty in the eye.

Cats found lurking in coal mines are considered to be bad luck.

It is believed that a white cat sitting on your doorstep just before your wedding is a sign of lasting happiness. White cats are a symbol of good luck in America, while black cats are a sign of bad luck.

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