If you have ever thought that your cat has a somewhat strange behavior, here you can have the answer: maybe he is a psychopath. A new study developed by British scientists from Liverpool has analyzed the behavior of cats with the participation of 2,042 owners and the conclusions have been disturbing.
Thus, the group of experts determined that “it is likely that all cats have an element of psychopathy”, a disorder that, according to the main researcher Rebecca Evans, was once useful to the ancestors of our pets. “In terms of acquiring resources such as food, territory and mating opportunities”, the doctor has commented.
The work has been published this month in the journal Journal of Research in Personality and focused on five main aspects of cats.
British scientists measured fearlessness, which has to do with social dominance and low levels of fear; disinhibition, which refers to self-control problems; evil, characterized, for example, by a lack of empathy; antipathy towards other pets and the same pattern but towards humans.
The results were based on the survey carried out in the form of a test, which included 46 statements with which the owners of the felines had to characterize their pets in one way or another.
“My cat torments its prey instead of killing it directly”, “my cat vocalizes loudly for no apparent reason” or “my cat is very excitable” are some of the phrases present in the test with which the researchers sought to assess the psychic state of the felines.
“The findings provide insight into the structure of triarchic psychopathy in cats,” the study concluded, referring to the triarchic model, which defines psychopathy as a disorder composed of three main traits: boldness, disinhibition, and pettiness.
The tool used by scientists at the University of Liverpool and Liverpool John Moores University to assess the mental stability of cats is the first of its kind to detect psychopathy. They called her CAT-Tri+ and, according to the authors of the research, it could be useful to improve relations between the cat and its owner.
“A cat with a high score on the boldness scale may benefit from large cat trees and tall scratching posts, as the elements of CAT-Tri+ suggest that a bold cat enjoys exploring and climbing,” said Evans, from the University of Liverpool.