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Sci-Tech

Cats don't need their owners, researchers say

Technically Incorrect: A group of UK researchers insists that cats are just fine on their own. They don't get a sense of security from specific humans.

Technically Incorrect offers a slightly twisted take on the tech that's taken over our lives.


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He loves you. Not. Forget Your Sadness/YouTube screenshot by Chris Matyszczyk/CNET

I had always assumed that cats thought humans a touch stupid.

Oh, they wander toward us when they want something. Essentially, though, they're even more self-regarding than Donald Trump.

This was reinforced by anthrozoologist John Bradshaw, who insists that cats just think we're big stupid cats. Which has ring of accuracy about it.

Now, however, I've stumbled into some research from the University of Lincoln in the UK. It's entitled: "Domestic Cats (Felis silvestris catus) Do Not Show Signs of Secure Attachment to Their Owners."

The researchers adapted the Ainsworth Strange Situation Test (SST). This served to offer evidence of secure attachments between children and dogs.

However, when the researchers tried to apply it to cats, the felines muttered: "Where's my food?"

Or, put in words that are actually in the research report: "There was no other evidence consistent with the interpretation of the bond between a cat and its owner meeting the requirements of a secure attachment."

Essentially, the research on 20 cat-owner dyads involved putting the cats with strangers. The cats were rather cool with that.

Again in the words of the research report: "These results are consistent with the view that adult cats are typically quite autonomous, even in their social relationships, and not necessarily dependent on others to provide a sense of security and safety."

You fool, you. You've made cat pictures the most shared things on the whole Internet. You've got so many LOLCATS that it isn't funny. And the cat is sitting there thinking: "Man, it's great to be alone."

Can anyone be truly surprised by these results? Cats are stunningly self-centered. They come by when they want something. The rest of the time they're wandering around looking for amusement.

In this they're not unlike modern man. Attachment in our world has become increasingly burdensome. We take what we can where we can from whom we can. The rest is drudgery.

We have, indeed, become our cats. There must be some research to support that, no?

(Via The Telegraph)