Your Cat May Like You More Than You Think

Life With Cats is reader-supported. We may earn a small commission through products purchased using links on this page.

We all know cats love food, and like many animals, are very motivated by it.  Any cat owner who wakes up to insistent meowing every morning at 6 A.M. could tell you that.

But according to a recent study published in the journal Behavioral Processes, cats actually prefer interacting with you over chowing down.

The study took a mix of 50 shelter and house cats and deprived them of human interaction, food, toys, and scents for a few hours.  Afterwards, they were reintroduced to each thing and surprisingly, social interaction with humans was what they wanted most.


“Let that sink in: more than food. I don’t like anybody more than food,”  Motherboard’s Jordan Pearson said.

For the study, researchers from Oregon State University set out to determine what motivates domestic cats, given the “common belief that cats are not especially sociable or trainable.”

Newsweek reports that human interaction was preferred by 50 percent of the cats tested, “while only 37 percent chose food as their favorite stimuli.” The study found the results were the same for both pet cats and shelter cats.

These results may be a shock to some cat owners (and not to others) but might give them all a reason to spend a little extra time petting their furry friend in the future.


For the full article visit

Leave a Comment