Features

September 2008 Issue

Your Cat's Amazing Grace

Your feline friend's agility and sense of balance are among her most outstanding features. Here's how they work.

If you asked Mother Nature, "What is the most athletic animal in the world?" She would most likely answer "the cat." If in doubt, watch your feline in perfect, graceful flight up the kitchen table to the inside of a cupboard ó without touching a thing. Your catís agility and sense of balance is one of her most outstanding features. Hereís how it works ó and how it can go awry. Biologists say that cats havenít changed for the past ten million years. "The big cats, such as lions, tigers and jaguars, and the small cats are almost identical in their agility and flexibility," explains Mark Lotz, panther biologist with the Florida Fish & Wildlife Conservation Commission. "If you watch cats hunt ó large or small ó they all possess the same skills of pouncing, stalking low to the ground and launching off at top speed to chase their prey."

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