Final Up to date on: June 14, 2023 by Crystal Uys
Our feline buddies can generally have interaction in fairly odd behaviors. One of the crucial well-known uncommon cat behaviors is their tendency to take a seat in squares. In actual fact, in 2017, the whole web spent a major period of time watching all types of cats resolve to take a seat in taped squares on the ground (#CatSquare).1
However why do cats like sitting in squares a lot? Is there an precise motive, or is it simply a kind of cat issues? Whereas extra analysis must be completed into the phenomenon of sq. sitting, plainly a lot of it has to do with a way of safety, whereas generally (as within the case of taped squares) it has to do with what’s often called the Kanizsa phantasm.
The Kanizsa Phantasm
Again in 2021, researchers from the College of Psychology and Public Well being in Australia and the Metropolis College of New York (CUNY) determined to check cognition in cats—particularly, whether or not felines had been capable of see optical illusions that had been within the form of the sq..2 Nonetheless, due to the pandemic, they ended up doing a citizen science investigation the place that they had cat homeowners take a look at their cats at residence. These cat homeowners had been required to put out three shapes on the ground—a sq. of tape, a Kanizsa phantasm, and a management form that didn’t seem as a sq..3
The outcomes of this research (amusingly titled “ If I matches I sits: A citizen science investigation into illusory contour susceptibility in home cats”) discovered that almost all of cats caught to the taped sq. and the Kanizsa phantasm when it got here to sitting. Hardly ever did cats enterprise into the management form that was not sq.. What does this imply?
It implies that felines are capable of understand illusory contours (or fill within the concept of a form when visuals merely counsel the perimeters of a form). So, cats can inform a sq. form, and within the case of 2D squares (versus 3D ones, reminiscent of packing containers), they’re doubtless interested in sitting in them due to the form’s sides. However why would they wish to sit in these squares due to the edges?
Causes Cats Could Get pleasure from Sitting in Squares
As cat dad and mom, we’ve all seen our kitties hanging out in quite a lot of square-shaped objects. In actual fact, I’ve tons of pictures of my cats smushed into the smallest of sq. packing containers and baskets. However why do our cats take pleasure in these areas a lot?
There are a few doable causes felines head in the direction of squares, however the primary principle of why they like sq. sitting has to do with consolation and security. Our cats take pleasure in enclosed areas (or ones with sides) as a result of it provides them a way of safety, significantly when stressed. When cats are tucked away into these squares, they will view the world round them from a vantage level that doesn’t contain them being out within the open, making them “safer”. So, even when the area with sides is just a taped sq. on the ground, it’s doubtless your cat feels only a bit safer whereas sitting in it.
Nonetheless, our feline companions may also head to a sq., reminiscent of a field or perhaps a piece of cardboard on the ground, to remain heat and comfy. Cardboard can act as respectable insulation for kitties, and cats like to be heat, so one can see why they’d take pleasure in sure squares that present coziness. The identical goes for square-shaped cat beds and smooth, fuzzy rugs!
Do All Kitties Like Sitting in Squares?
All cats are totally different, so some could not have any inclination in the direction of sitting in sq. objects or taped squares. You would possibly tape off a sq. in your house, solely to seek out that your cat is completely disinterested or takes a fast look, then strikes on. It doesn’t imply there’s something unsuitable together with your cat; it’s only a matter of non-public choice for them!
Most kitties are huge followers of sitting in squares. The main principle for why they take pleasure in this revolves round sq. shapes, giving them a way of security as a result of having sides. The research, “If I matches, I sits: A citizen science investigation into illusory contour susceptibility in home cats,” discovered that felines can understand sq. shapes and the phantasm of sq. shapes and can ignore different accessible shapes. This makes the speculation of the edges of a sq. being comforting extra believable. But it surely may also be that many sq. shapes can present heat and coziness to a cat.
Don’t be alarmed in case your cat received’t sit in a taped sq. (or different forms of squares), although! All cats are totally different, so yours would possibly merely not be a fan of sitting on this form.
Featured Picture Credit score: Lightspruch, Shutterstock
In regards to the creator
Cat mother to Ivy – a feisty little rescue kitten that’s her one and solely youngster. For now! All through her life, she has been launched to the particular love that may be discovered within the bond with a cat. Having owned a number of felines, she is greater than sure that their love is unmatched, unconditional and in contrast to every other. With a ardour to teach the general public about every thing, there may be to find out about felines, their conduct, and their distinctive personalities, Crystal is devoted to creating positive that each one cats and their homeowners know the significance of acutely aware dwelling – and loving!