googled #5

Welcome to Friday my friend!! Wahoo!! It seems that everyone I talk to is swamped with work, so I hope you get a chance to take a breather and relax over the next 48 hours. No rest for the weary over here, I am making some big moves this weekend - literally! Francine and I are packed and pumped.

In ancient times cats were worshipped as gods; they have not forgotten this.
— Terry Pratchett

As you might have noticed, Francine likes to sneak in for a few photo-ops here and there. She is currently my pet. While she doesn't provide too much in the way of entertainment, she is quiet, clean, and obedient. Oh! And since she was a Halloween decoration I bought from the grocery store, I don't have to pay extra rent, food, or vet bills. Nope. Her total cost came to just shy of $9. So, there's always that. #winning

The downside is, Francine is pretty boring. I move her around from time to time - you know, to change up her scenery - but she doesn't compare to my snu from home, Frankie. He currently lives with MOTS back in Nebraska, and I am desperately trying to plan his move out East. Did I mention he weighs 27 pounds?! True story. 

Don't be fooled by his large size, that cat is still just as agile as ever. He doesn't miss a beat, and the German Shepherd has no chance of catching him anytime soon. The two don't exactly get along, and MOTS always has a story about their shenanigans. As she filled me in last night, I got to wondering...how do cats always land on their feet?

googled: how cats land on their feet

They are just sassy. (It's true!) But there is also a scientific reason: the cat's inner ear has a finely tuned vestibular system. This apparatus exists in most animals - including us - and plays an integral role in balance. As part of the inner ear, the vestibular system houses fluid filled canals with millions of tiny hairs. Movement causes the hairs to shift, and the brain interprets the signals to indicate direction and speed of the body. Because the cat's vestibular organ is highly developed, it has the ability to quickly reorient its body and regain balance after a fall. 

Additionally, the cat's flexibility is extremely important in finding their feet. They have 30 vertebrae - compared to our measly 24 - and the extra six allow their spines to twist during a fall. Once the cat determines which direction is up, it orients its head into the correct position and the remainder of its body follows. Lastly, cats relax their body and spread out, like a parachute, to help their joints absorb the impact from a fall. Surprisingly, vets often see more injuries from shorter falls than from those of higher distances. The more time the cat spends in the air, the more time its body can properly prepare for impact.  

It's unfortunate we don't have the same skills. Imagine how many kids could be saved a trip to the ER with a broken bone?! Oh, well. Those casts are a right of passage I suppose. Not that I would know, I escaped my childhood without ever wearing one. I must have those sassy feline skills. Annnnnd I just knocked on wood. I don't want to jinx myself...I am sitting here with a black snu after all!!

Happy Weekending! See you all on Monday! Meow!