Cats News -- ScienceDaily
Cat news. Read about household contaminants affecting cats, allergies to cats and more. Also find stories on lions, tigers and leopards.
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 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.
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.
12/06/2017 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.
12/04/2017 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.
11/20/2017 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.
10/19/2017 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 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 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.
09/15/2017 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.
08/07/2017 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.
08/02/2017 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.
08/01/2017 05:33 PM
Whole genome sequencing identifies cause of zoonotic epidemic
For the first time, researchers have used whole genome sequencing to identify the cause of a zoonotic infection that sparked a national epidemic. Researchers describe their use of whole genome sequencing to determine the cause of a respiratory disease that ripped through a population of native horses in Iceland several years ago.
07/31/2017 07:10 AM
What does trophy hunting contribute to wild lion conservation?
Trophy hunting of lions, the killing of selected individual animals for sport, is highly controversial, and there is much debate about what it contributes to conservation. A new article highlights significant 'unknowns' that thwart conservationists from making any robust conclusions.
06/19/2017 10:58 AM
Ancient DNA reveals role of Near East and Egypt in cat domestication
DNA found at archaeological sites reveals that the origins of our domestic cat are in the Near East and ancient Egypt. Cats were domesticated by the first farmers some 10,000 years ago. They later spread across Europe and other parts of the world via trade hub Egypt. The DNA analysis also revealed that most of these ancient cats had stripes: spotted cats were uncommon until the Middle Ages.
05/23/2017 06:37 AM
Wolves need space to roam to control expanding coyote populations
Wolves and other top predators need large ranges to be able to control smaller predators whose populations have expanded, according to a new study. The results were similar across three continents, showing that as top predators' ranges were cut back and fragmented, they were no longer able to control smaller predators.
05/23/2017 06:19 AM
New cancer drug can prevent reactions to common airborne allergens
A cancer drug for patients with certain types of leukemia and lymphoma can also prevent reactions to some of the most common airborne allergies, according to a recent study. The promising data from this pilot study could have greater implications for adults with food allergies.
05/11/2017 09:59 AM
Rare feline genetic disorders identified through whole genome sequencing
Veterinary neurologists found a genetic link between degenerative myelopathy (DM) in dogs and amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), or Lou Gehrig's disease in people. Now they have found that a biomarker test that helps diagnose ALS also can assist with determining a diagnosis for degenerative myelopathy.