Why do cats like to sit on boxes, according to science

Whether they are large tigers or house cats, cats love to crawl into boxes, cages, or other four-sided objects (Reuters)

It is no secret that Cats love to sit anywhere that looks like a square. Social networks are filled with pictures of cats entering cardboard boxes, baskets, suitcases, drawers and plastic containers. In 2017, the hashtag #CatSquare showed on social media that many of the feline collapsed into square plans on the floor made of duct tape.

Cats, like people, can be fooled by optical illusions, is found A new study published in Applied animal behavior science. The study, based on experiments conducted by home pet owners, found that cats tend to sit inside two-dimensional shapes that only look like squares as much as they sit inside a real square. The results can give us very little information about feline cognition.

Co-author of the study, Gabriella Smith, Animal cognition researcher in Hunter College of New York, He had his first idea of ​​testing a cat’s cognitive perception after listening to a lecture about a dog’s susceptibility to visual illusions and Wonder if the house cat can “visually fall in love”.

Smith And his team is a designer Citizen Science Experience Pet owners were instructed to create the illusion of shapes using paper and tape by creating corners without sides. This exercise is known as Canisa square illusion, This gives a visualization of the edges without the shape.

A new study published in the Journal of Applied Animal Behavior (REUTERS) finds that cats, like humans, can be fooled by optical illusions.
A new study published in the Journal of Applied Animal Behavior (REUTERS) finds that cats, like humans, can be fooled by optical illusions.

The “fake” square was made using four 90-degree circles cut into them, somewhat like Pac-Man. Each right angle was used to create the illusion of the corners of the square. Once you make the paper shapes, The researchers instructed citizen scientists to place the figures on the ground in various arrangements. These arrangements included a regular-edged square, the idyllic Canisa square, and the quirky Canisa square.

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To avoid any effect that cat owners may have on their cats, Their owners have been instructed to avoid interacting with their cats and to wear sunglassesL Avoid eye contact, report Science alert. The cats were filmed entering the room, and the researchers observed whether the cat was sitting or standing in a road for at least three seconds.

sum, Conception was evaluated for 500 cats, But only 30 of the cat owners completed the six-day experiment. From a sample size of 30 cats, Nine cats have chosen to sit in one way. Those nine cats sat in the regular square eight times, the perfect canisa square seven times, and the mangled Canisa square only once.

“ The main conclusion is that Cats are prone to Kanizsa delusion in a human-like way, and are more likely to be attracted to two-dimensional shapes due to outlines (sides), rather than simply regenerating on the ground. “ He explains Smith.

Why do cats like to sit where it fits?  Still more research is needed (Getty)
Why do cats like to sit where it fits? Still more research is needed (Getty)

Although the sample size is small, Smith Find out The cats chose Canisa almost as much as they chose the square. Your business goes along with Previous studies On both sides of the cat’s response to optical illusions. Also study It was the first time cats had been tested for optical illusions in a familiar environment. This allowed them to behave normally at home. On the other hand Environments such as lab settings are more likely to stress cats.

The study results could help researchers understand how cats perceive fantasies, which scientists can compare to other animals. But, Why do cats like to sit where it fits? More research is needed. Some researchers doubt this It can provide a sense of security similar to that of a cat when hiding in an enclosed space.

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Aileen Morales

"Beer nerd. Food fanatic. Alcohol scholar. Tv practitioner. Writer. Troublemaker. Falls down a lot."

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