Cats News -- ScienceDaily

Cat news. Read about household contaminants affecting cats, allergies to cats and more. Also find stories on lions, tigers and leopards.

06/19/2018 11:25 AM
Lion conservation research can be bolstered by input from a wide-range of professionals
To tackle the sharp decline in lion numbers, conservation research should consider wild prey, livestock and the environment, not just human-lion interaction, a new review suggests.

06/05/2018 04:25 PM
Dogs prefer to eat fat, and cats surprisingly tend toward carbs
Dogs gravitate toward high-fat food, but cats pounce on carbohydrates with even greater enthusiasm, according to research into the dietary habits of America's two most popular pets.

06/05/2018 02:41 PM
Secret life of an enigmatic Antarctic apex predator
Scientists have, for the first time, tracked the lives of leopard seals as they migrate around Antarctica. The team followed these formidable predators as they move from the frozen Antarctic sea-ice to the more northerly sub-Antarctic islands where they prey on penguins, seals and krill.

05/21/2018 12:17 PM
Quantum effects observed in photosynthesis
Molecules that are involved in photosynthesis exhibit the same quantum effects as non-living matter, concludes an international team of scientists. This is the first time that quantum mechanical behavior was proven to exist in biological systems that are involved in photosynthesis. The interpretation of these quantum effects in photosynthesis may help in the development of nature-inspired light-harvesting devices.

05/18/2018 07:19 AM
New virus identified in cat
Researchers have found a previously undiscovered hepadnavirus in an immunocompromised cat, and subsequently in banked samples.

05/08/2018 04:08 PM
Leopard meals: Females go for diversity
Leopards, top predators of the African savannah, are known to feed on a variety of prey species. It has been largely unknown, however, whether they specialize in certain prey animals and which factors might influence prey preferences. Scientists investigated these questions by studying the diet of leopards on commercial farmland in central Namibia.

04/10/2018 09:35 AM
How cheetahs outsmart lions and hyenas
Cheetahs in the Serengeti National Park adopt different strategies while eating to deal with threats from top predators such as lions or hyenas. A new study shows that male cheetahs and single females eat their prey as quickly as possible. Mothers with cubs, on the other hand, watch out for possible threats while their young are eating in order to give them enough time to eat their fill.

04/10/2018 07:42 AM
Rats, cats, and people trade-off as main course for mosquitoes in Baltimore, Md.
Understanding how neighborhood dynamics regulate mosquito bites is key to managing diseases like West Nile virus and Zika virus. Today in Parasites & Vectors, researchers report that in Baltimore, Md., socioeconomic differences between neighborhoods influence bite risk, with rats being a primary blood meal source in lower income neighborhoods.

03/23/2018 09:48 AM
Jaguars and well-managed logging concessions can coexist, say conservationists
Logging activities in biodiverse forests can have a huge negative impact on wildlife, particularly large species such as big cats, but a new study proves that the Western Hemisphere's largest cat species -- the jaguar (Panthera onca) -- can do well in logging concessions that are properly managed.

03/22/2018 10:30 AM
Research suggests low density of snow leopards in Nepal`s Conservation Area
The snow leopard is a mammal species of the cat family found at high altitudes in Nepal and other countries around the Himalayan range. However, it has been included in the vulnerable category of IUCN Red list of threatened species in recent years for various reasons.

03/21/2018 04:42 PM
Animal nutrition: Excess phosphorus damages the kidney
A new study carried out by veterinarians shows that high phosphorus intake, comparable to the average level provided by prepared cat food, can be deleterious to kidney function in healthy cats.

03/21/2018 10:08 AM
The problem of jaguars and space in western Paraguay
A recent study shows how researchers used GPS technology and new analytical techniques to produce the first rigorous estimates of jaguar spatial needs and movements in the Gran Chaco and Pantanal ecosystems of Paraguay.

03/19/2018 02:57 PM
First evidence of live-traded dogs for Maya ceremonies
Earliest evidence that Mayas raised and traded dogs and other animals -- probably for ceremonies -- from Ceibal, Guatemala.

03/13/2018 11:06 AM
Hunger guides mountain lions' actions to enter residential areas
In a new study, researchers found that while big cats like mountain lions are generally fearful of and avoid humans, hunger can dampen that fear.

03/13/2018 09:35 AM
Mesenchymal stem cell therapy: Holding promise for feline inflammatory diseases
Stem cell therapy is acknowledged as having great potential for the treatment of a variety of diseases in both people and animals. The use of bone marrow-derived stem cells is well established in the treatment of human cancer patients, and veterinary applications for bone marrow- and adipose-derived stem cells are being evaluated.

03/07/2018 08:52 AM
How cats and dogs are consuming and processing parabens
Many households can claim at least one four-legged friend as part of the family. But pets that primarily stay indoors can have increased rates of diseases, such as diabetes, kidney diseases and hypothyroidism compared with those that stay exclusively outside. Some scientists propose that chemical substances in the home could contribute to these illnesses.

03/01/2018 10:54 AM
Cambodia's last leopards on brink of extinction
A new study has confirmed that the world's last breeding population of leopards in Cambodia is at immediate risk of extinction, having declined an astonishing 72% during a five-year period. The population represents the last remaining leopards in all of eastern Indochina - a region incorporating Cambodia, Laos and Vietnam.

02/05/2018 09:32 PM
Novel research approach sheds light on how midsize predators interact
A novel research approach has resulted in a key step toward better protecting the fisher, an important forest predator that findings show is the dominant small carnivore when present.

02/02/2018 10:26 AM
Cheetahs' inner ear is one of a kind, vital to high-speed hunting
The world's fastest land animal, the cheetah, is a successful hunter not only because it is quick, but also because it can hold an incredibly still gaze while pursuing prey. For the first time, researchers have investigated the cheetah's extraordinary sensory abilities by analyzing the speedy animal's inner ear, an organ that is essential for maintaining body balance and adapting head posture during movement in most vertebrates.

01/30/2018 01:02 PM
An outdoor cat can damage your sustainability cred
If you install solar panels on your roof and avoid dousing your lawn with chemicals and pesticides, your online peers may consider you to be environmentally friendly. But this street cred can all be erased if you let your cat roam around outdoors.

01/25/2018 09:13 AM
MMV malaria box phenotyped against plasmodium and toxoplasma
Scientists have completed phenotypic screening of a large collection of potent chemical inhibitors (known as MMV Malaria Box), against pathogenic parasites toxoplasma gondii and plasmodium falciparum, causative agents of human toxoplasmosis and malaria. This knowledge opens up new avenues to study unique stages of infectious cycle that are affected by inhibitor classes towards anti-parasitic drug development.

01/24/2018 01:15 PM
Predator control can have unintended consequences
Introduced predators pose threats to biodiversity and are implicated in the extinction of many native species.

01/24/2018 12:17 PM
Fat cat? Here's how much to feed to lose weight
Does your cat lay around all day, only getting up to eat and visit the litter box? Chances are, he's overweight. Maybe you've switched to the 'diet' cat food or tried feeding him less, but you might have noticed it's not easy to get that weight off. A new study explains what it takes to get kitty to slim down.

01/22/2018 09:40 AM
Female cats are more likely to be right-handed, researchers discover
Researchers have found that female cats are much more likely to use their right paw than males.

01/17/2018 09:26 AM
Canine distemper confirmed in Far Eastern leopard, world's most endangered big cat
The Far Eastern or Amur leopard (Panthera pardus orientalis) is already among the rarest of the world's big cats, but new research reveals that it faces yet another threat: infection with canine distemper virus (CDV).

01/16/2018 08:36 AM
Habitat fragmentation a bigger threat to Chile’s güiña wildcat than persecution by humans
Research by conservationists has found that habitat fragmentation, and the subdivision of large farms into smaller ones, are the biggest threats facing the güiña wildcat in Chile.

01/11/2018 09:40 PM
Experts raise concerns over raw meat diets for cats and dogs
Experts are warning dog and cat owners to be aware of the risks associated with feeding their pets raw meat-based diets, instead of the more conventional dry or canned pet foods.

01/03/2018 06:47 PM
Impact of lions living alongside giraffe populations
New research is calling for an urgent review into how populations of giraffes are managed in the wild when living alongside lions.

12/28/2017 09:09 AM
Veterinary surgeons perform first-known brain surgery to treat hydrocephalus in fur seal
A neurosurgical team has successfully performed what is believed to be a first-of-its-kind brain surgery on a Northern fur seal named Ziggy Star in an attempt to address her worsening neurologic condition. Ziggy, an adult female, is recovering well at her permanent home at Mystic Aquarium in Mystic, Conn.

12/11/2017 08:27 AM
Endangered listing urged for cheetahs
Researchers present evidence that low cheetah population estimates in southern Africa support a call to list the cheetah as "Endangered" on the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) Red List.

12/08/2017 08:59 AM
Toxoplasmosis: How a cat parasite exploits immune cells to reach the brain
Scientists have previously shown that a parasite from cats can infect people's brain and affect our behaviour. Now, researchers at Stockholm University have discovered how the parasite takes control of our cells.

12/06/2017 06:37 PM
New species of extinct marsupial lion discovered in Australia
A team of Australian scientists has discovered a new species of marsupial lion which has been extinct for at least 19 million years. The findings are based on fossilized remains of the animal's skull, teeth, and humerus (upper arm bone) found in the Riversleigh World Heritage Area of remote northwestern Queensland.

12/05/2017 04:02 PM
Tigers cling to survival in Sumatra's increasingly fragmented forests
A research expedition tracked endangered tigers through the Sumatran jungles for a year and found tigers are clinging to survival in low density populations. The study found that well-protected forests are disappearing and are increasingly fragmented: Of the habitat tigers rely on in Sumatra, 17 percent was deforested between 2000 to 2012 alone. Their findings have renewed fears about the possible extinction of the elusive predators.

12/05/2017 01:25 PM
Cooling climate drove evolution of Tasmanian Devil and its relatives
A big drop in global temperatures 12-14 million years ago may explain the evolutionary success of Australia's unique marsupial carnivores, a new study has found.

12/04/2017 10:29 AM
Medium-sized carnivores most at risk from environmental change
In a surprise ecological finding, researchers discover medium-sized carnivores spend the most time looking for food, making them vulnerable to change.

12/04/2017 08:18 AM
Intestinal worms may solve allergy puzzle
While young people with parasite worms currently have a four times higher risk for developing allergies and asthma than others, their parents are generally unaffected. Researchers were surprised when they found that intestinal worms, so-called Helminths (Toxocara Canis) from animals, actually have an influence on allergy- and asthma risk in humans.

11/29/2017 12:13 PM
Sorry, Grumpy Cat: Study finds dogs are brainier than cats
The first study to actually count the number of cortical neurons in the brains of a number of carnivores, including cats and dogs, has found that dogs possess significantly more of them than cats.

11/28/2017 06:00 PM
Dogs get the Hollywood treatment to make animal animations more realistic
Researchers are creating a library of movement data from different dog breeds, to make animal animations in films and video games more realistic.

11/20/2017 07:54 AM
Tiger bones? Lion bones? An almost extinct cycad? On-the-spot DNA checks at ports of entry
Wildlife species are going extinct faster than humankind can reliably keep track of. Meanwhile, wildlife crime evolves quickly, with new tricks fueling a lucrative illegal global trade. As a result, customs and other port-of-entry officials confronted with unidentifiable bits of animals and plants need to make rapid decisions based on reliable information. LifeScanner LAB-IN-A-BOX, a portable DNA barcoding lab can serve as a new tool for rapid on-site species identification, adding to law enforcement's arsenal.

11/10/2017 07:43 AM
Scientists investigate how different houses and lifestyles affect which bugs live with us
Humans have lived under the same roof with bugs since we first began building shelters 20,000 years ago. Now, scientists are studying how physical factors of our homes -- from the floor plan and the number of windows to even how tidy we are -- may play a role in the diversity of the multi-legged communities populating the indoor environment.

11/01/2017 08:26 AM
Feral animals pose major threat to Outback, climate change study finds
A study of changing rainfall and wildfire patterns over 22 years in Australia's Simpson Desert has found - in addition to a likely climate-induced decrease in cover of the dominant plant spinifex - introduced cats and foxes pose a major threat to seed-eating rodents.

10/27/2017 09:18 AM
Cell Biology: Cellular power outage
Protein aggregation is a hallmark of many neurodegenerative diseases. Even in normal cells, such deposits can accumulate in mitochondria, blocking energy production, but a newly described quality control system can mitigate the problem.

10/23/2017 10:29 AM
Sumatran tigers on path to recovery in 'in danger' UNESCO World Heritage site
New research looks at the effectiveness of the park's protection zone and finds that the density of Sumatran tigers has increased despite the continued threat of living in an 'In Danger' World Heritage Site.

10/19/2017 12:30 PM
Ancient DNA offers new view on saber-toothed cats' past
Researchers who've analyzed the complete mitochondrial genomes from ancient samples representing two species of saber-toothed cats have a new take on the animals' history over the last 50,000 years. The data suggest that the saber-toothed cats shared a common ancestor with all living cat-like species about 20 million years ago. The two saber-toothed cat species under study diverged from each other about 18 million years ago.

10/12/2017 08:36 AM
Pumas found to exhibit behaviors like social animals
Pumas, long known as solitary carnivores, are more social than previously thought, according to a new study. The findings provide the first evidence of complex social strategies in any solitary carnivore -- and may have implications for multiple species, including other wild cats around the world.

10/11/2017 11:17 AM
Bycatch responsible for decline of endangered New Zealand sea lion
Getting caught in fishing nets is a major cause of death for the increasingly endangered New Zealand sea lion, according to new research.

10/11/2017 10:38 AM
Advance achieved in dry preservation of mammalian sperm cells
In an important advance in the preservation of animal reproductive material, researchers have achieved the first successful drying and rehydration of domestic cat sperm using a rapid microwave dehydration method. More challenging to dehydrate than rodent sperm because of the presence of a centrosome, the rehydrated cat sperm were viable and capable of producing blastocysts. Dehydration preservation allows relatively easy, low-tech storage, which could be important in resource-challenged conditions.

09/28/2017 10:17 AM
Saber-toothed kittens may have been born with thicker bones than other contemporary cats
Saber-toothed kittens may have been born with thicker bones compared to other contemporary cats, but they have a similar pattern of bone development, according to a new study.

09/28/2017 08:31 AM
How do zebrafish develop their stripes?
A mathematician has thrown new light on the longstanding mystery of how zebrafish develop the distinctive striped patterns on their skin.

09/18/2017 08:22 PM
Parasitic eye infection poses significant threat to UK dogs, warn experts
A parasitic worm that is becoming increasingly common in Europe poses a significant threat to UK dogs, warn experts in a new report.

09/18/2017 08:22 PM
Owners of seriously ill pets at risk of stress, anxiety and depressive symptoms
Owners of seriously or terminally ill pets are more likely to suffer with stress and symptoms of depression and anxiety, as well as poorer quality of life, compared with owners of healthy animals, finds a study.

09/15/2017 02:52 PM
Delayed weaning reduces behavioural problems in cats
Early weaning increases aggression and stereotypic behavior in cats. Based on the study, the recommended weaning age of 12 weeks should be raised by at least two weeks. Delaying weaning is an easy and cost-efficient way of improving the quality of life of cats.

09/13/2017 08:44 AM
Lion conservation requires effective international cooperation
In response to the alarming population declines of one of the most charismatic representatives of the megafauna, the lion, a team of international wildlife lawyers and lion experts joined efforts to assess the current and potential future role of international treaties regarding the carnivore's conservation.

09/07/2017 12:27 PM
How tails help geckos and other vertebrates make great strides
A wagging tail is often associated with dogs' emotions, but the side-to-side motion may also help them take longer strides and move faster, according to a study. The research was done on leopard geckos, which are ideal animals for the study of tail function because they naturally lose their tails as a defense mechanism against predators in a process called autotomy.

09/06/2017 08:35 AM
Research dog helps scientists save endangered carnivores
Scat-sniffing research dogs are helping scientists map out a plan to save reclusive jaguars, pumas, bush dogs and other endangered carnivores in the increasingly fragmented forests of northeastern Argentina, according to a new study.

08/30/2017 08:35 AM
How invasive species threaten bats
A new review is the first to describe the scope of threats to bats by invasive species.

08/17/2017 07:31 AM
‘Euro Devil’: Fossil of carnivorous marsupial relative discovered in E Europe
Scientists have discovered fossil remains of a new carnivorous mammal in Turkey, one of the biggest marsupial relatives ever discovered in the northern hemisphere.

08/07/2017 10:05 AM
Largest-ever study of pets and kids' health finds no link
A large body of research has reported an association between the pet ownership and better health among children. But a new study that is the largest-ever to explore the issue contradicts the common thinking. Researchers did find that children from pet-owning families tended to have better general health, but those differences disappeared when factors such as family income and family housing were considered.

08/04/2017 08:04 AM
Wildlife royalties: A future for conservation?
Should people who profit from the cultural representation of wildlife pay towards conservation? That is the question asked in a new research study.

08/02/2017 12:28 PM
The truth about cats' and dogs' environmental impact
US cats and dogs cause 25-30 percent of the environmental impact of meat consumption in this country. The nation's 163 million cats and dogs eat as much food as all the people in France. People should keep their pets -- and keep feeding them meat -- but there may be steps pet owners can take to reduce their environmental impact, says a researcher.