Your cats can imagine you and know where you are without seeing you
Cats have always been mysterious creatures, but now they will not only be mysterious because of their personality but also because of an innate and incredibly futuristic capacity they have. We say futuristic because it is what we imagine when we think of a mind that develops beyond what we know, which has not yet happened or not to this level.
However, in cats it does happen and that is why we are now going to explain it in detail.
The Japanese study that unveiled this ability
At Kyoto University in Japan, they wanted to investigate whether it is true that cats are detached animals and tend to be unloving. Many studies are already known to disprove this, but in this case something else has been discovered.
And it is that cats have an ability that calms them and helps them to mentally visualize us in other parts of the house. Let’s explain it in more detail.
How is it that they can imagine their owners?
Dr. Saho Takagi, has stated that cats are able to make a mental map of the location of the owners based on their voice. This means that you can imagine them without seeing them, which makes it clear that they have a deeper brain than expected from any other animal.
You can store a representation in their owners’ minds and then they apply it to other locations. We could say that these are high-level cognitive processes such as forward planning.
What exactly does the owner’s representation look like?
What they did in order to find out more about this was to lock 50 cats in rooms they knew. All individually. Then, they placed one wireless speaker and placed another one outside the room, just in the opposite area.
This was basic because they could broadcast the voices of the owners in different areas to see how the cats analyzed this data. They broadcast the voices inside the rooms without the owners being inside the room which made the cats feel confused as they could not see them.
And what was the surprise?
The main confusion was that if they heard the owners in the room, but they were not there, they must have teleported to another part of the house.
Simply put, cats are capable of being confused if they hear their owner’s voice and don’t see them. They start to move their ears and head, looking for them, which means that they have a visual image of their owners in their head and use it to search efficiently.
This shows that they have an obvious socio-spatial cognition. This is a very innovative concept that allows us to begin to investigate how deep a cat’s mind is.
They also map the location of the owner through their voice.
Did the same thing happen with other sounds?
The same did not occur with meowing sounds or electronic sounds. This must be related to the fact that cats do not use meowing to communicate and prefer to use scent to identify them.