November 2012 Issue

In The News: The mysterious purr eludes translation

Learning how to interpret their vocalizations can help you understand and meet their needs.

Conventional wisdom has long held that purring is a sign of contentment, a cat purring on a sunny windowsill by the owner’s side being a perfect example. However, researchers have found that cats also purr in other, often surprising situations — when giving birth and nursing, when under duress and even when dying.

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