Cats Intelligence Superior Claims Scientific Americat

Cats Intelligence Superior

Cats know they are intelligent. They do not need to perform tricks to remind the humans in their lives they are smart. And although treats are nice, it is not worth losing their dignity just to get a snack. Truth is, cats will get treats anyway, simply by making “the eyes”  directing their humans to get them what they desire.

There is lots of chatter lately about dogs being more intelligent than cats. And as we discussed in our Dogs Smarter Than CatsScientific Americat Study Flawed series, the article in New Scientist was biased towards the dog’s willingness to serve humans. Now a study out of the University of Oxford claims that socializing led to bigger brains for some mammals, including dogs.

For the first time researchers attempted to chart the evolutionary history of the brain across different groups of mammals over 60 million years. They discovered that there are huge variations in how the brains of different groups of mammals have evolved over that time. They also suggest that there is a link between the sociality of mammals and the size of their brains relative to body size, according to a study published in the PNAS journal (Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America). These researchers claim that dogs have developed bigger brains than cats because highly social species of mammals need more brain power than solitary animals.

The Lazy Leopard Research Institute disagrees and here is why:

1) The average dog brain weighs in at 64 grams and the average domestic cat’s brain weighs 25 grams. This stands to reason as dogs on average are much bigger than the typical house cat.  What is more important than simply brain size, not a reliable measure of intelligence, is to take a look at the brains information processing capacity: the number of neurons in the cortex, known as the executive brain. Cats clearly rule with 300 million neurons compared with a mere 160 million in dogs.  So you see, the house cat is small but mighty!

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Dogs Smarter Than Cats Study Reviewed Part 3

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This is Thinking Gracey. When you see this image, you might want a "thinking beverage" and/or a nap.

The Cats Rule Dogs Drool Evidence

In Part 3 of our review of the New Scientist  article that concluded dogs are smarter than cats we will move on to evaluate the final three categories:  9) Supersenses, 10)Eco-Friendliness and 11) Utility.  In case you are new to our discussion, in Part 1 we reviewed: 1) Brains, 2) Shared History, 3) Bonding, 4)Popularity and 5)Understanding.  In Part 2 we reviewed: 6) Problem Solving, 7) Vocalisation and 8 ) Tractability.  The score:

Human Study Winner: Cats-3  Dogs-5     The  Lazy Leopard Research Institute Score: Cats-5+  Dogs 0

Let’s continue now with category nine.

9) SUPERSENSES

Does it even seem fair to compare dogs and cats in this category? The very word SUPERSENSES screams cat doesn’t it?  Alas, here is what the humans had to say about the senses.

a) SMELL Even though endless breeds of dogs have been created trying to tweak the canine’s perceptual ability,  the average cat out sniffs the average dog.  With one exception, the bloodhound’s nose contains 300 million smell receptor sites. However the average dog’s olfactory receptors range from 125 -250 million  whereas the average cat has 200 million smell receptors. SMELL GOES TO THE CATS!

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Dogs Smarter Than Cats Study Claims Flawed Part 2

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This is Thinking Gracey. When you see this image, you might want a "thinking beverage" and/or a nap.

Dogs Smarter than Cats?

As we discussed in Part 1 of our review, we think the claims made that dogs are smarter than cats in a New Scientist article are flawed and we continue on with our explanation of why we think so here in Part 2.

When we left Part 1 we had reviewed  five of the eleven categories: 1)Brains, 2)Shared History, 3) Bonding, 4) Popularity and 5) Understanding.  The score:

Human Study Winner: Cats-2  Dogs-3     The  Lazy Leopard Research Institute Score: Cats-2+  Dogs 0-

Let’s continue now with category six.

6) PROBLEM SOLVING

The human study claims that both cats and dogs do fairly well at finding bits of food hidden from them, even though cats hunt for the food on their own and the dogs cheat by asking their pet parents for help as reviewed in category 5-Understanding.

The humans go on to say that not much else is known about the cat’s ability to solve problems. Dogs on the other hand, have been tested ad nauseum. And guess what? The dogs have failed their testing and compared to their wolf cousins, should be wearing dunce caps.

Wolves were able to open a door with a complicated catch simply by watching another wolf do it and the dogs could not figure it out even after years of watching the door open and close.  Cats were not tested, so The Lazy Leopard Research Institute* would like to inject an example of a clever cat solving a problem without the help of humans.  If you would please direct your attention to this short video:

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bmTxB5nXlzk[/youtube]

Notice how Oscar was able to do the math to calculate the leaping distance to grab the handle and then uses his back legs to push off gaining the leverage needed to open the freezer door. Then carefully jumps down and recalculates the distance to leap up into the freezer to snag the fish sticks. Oscar did not need to observe one of our brilliant wildcat cousins either, he just figured it out on his own.

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Dogs Smarter Than Cats Study Claims Flawed Part 1

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This is Thinking Gracey. When you see this image, you might want a "thinking beverage" and/or a nap.


Dogs more Intelligent than Cats?

Dogs and cats were evaluated in eleven categories in an attempt to determine which species is more intelligent.  I know, this is like trying to determine which is of greater value, a piece of limestone gravel or an emerald but try to control any hissing and fat tails.  The  New Scientist article’s shocking research results show a clear bias towards dogs  with the canines awarded 6 points and the felines a meager 5.

Research Study Demonstrates Clear Bias Towards Dogs

Dogs celebrating  the declaration that they are smarter than cats came a wee bit early in our opinion. And just like dancing in the end zone, this  display of excessive celebration usually results in a penalty. So, The Lazy Leopard Research Institute is about to blow the whistle and place a flag on the play.

While our canine compadres celebrated by fetching toys, speaking on demand,  and toasting with toilet water cocktails, their fellow felines were hard at work analyzing the data. Here is what the superior minds at The Lazy Leopard Research Institute* found out.

1) BRAINS

The average dog brain weighs in at 64 grams and the average domestic cat’s brain weighs 25 grams. This stands to reason as dogs on average are much heavier than the typical house cat.  What is more important than simply brain size, not a reliable measure of intelligence, is to take a look at the brains information processing capacity: the number of neurons in the cortex, known as the executive brain. Cats clearly rule with 300 million neurons compared with a mere 160 million in dogs.  We have created a chart to rub it in, we mean to make it easier to compare.

Neurons in the cortex of dogs and cats

Human Study Winner: Cats-1  Dogs-0     The Lazy Leopard Research Institute Score: Cats-1+  Dogs 0-

At this point, do we need to even go on?  We cats are not ones to kick a dog when it is down but in the interest of science we must follow through.

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