47 asked in PetsCats · 8 years ago

Why do cats purr and how?

Why do cats purr and for that matter what makes them purr?

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  • Hubley
    Lv 5
    8 years ago
    Favorite Answer

    Why Do Cats Purr?

    According to research posted by the American Association for the Advancement of Science, the purr is something cats are able to do from birth when they purr primarily while suckling. Purring is used in a wide variety of circumstances, not just when a cat is happy. For instance, veterinarians have noticed that some cats purr continuously when they are chronically ill or appear to be in severe pain. It is thought that they do so as a way to solicit care from humans.

    Others are of the opinion that a cat purrs when ill or in pain to ward off threats. If a cat is ill in the wild, he may purr when approached by another cat, so the approaching cat doesn't feel he is a threat and attack.

    Cat purrs range from a deep rumble to a raspy, broken sound, to a high-pitched trill, depending on the cat's mood and/or physiology. Many cats will "wind-down" when going to sleep, with a long purring sigh that drops melodically from a high to a low pitch. A cat purrs at roughly the same velocity of idling diesel engine - around 26 cycles per second.

    How Do Cats Purr?

    There has been a lot of speculation on how purring occurs. According to some, a purr is created by the vibration of a cat's vocal cords when it inhales and exhales. Others feel it is caused by soft palate vibrations. Some have wondered if cats have a set of false vocal cords within the larynx.

    Some researchers theorize it is a vibration caused by blood passing through the large veins in the cat's chest cavity, amplified by the diaphragm, which passes up the windpipe and into the windpipe and into the sinus cavities of the skull.

    Electromyographic tests - they measure the level of electrical activity in muscles - seem to indicate it is caused by the activation of the muscles of the larnyx, and partial closure of the glottis (the opening of the larnyx).

    The most recent declarative statement found on the web was made by Katharine Houpt, director of the Animal Behavior Clinic at Cornell University. In 2002, she is quoted as saying: "It's a vibration of the larynx that resonates down to the windpipe and into the diaphragm. Unlike meowing or human speech, purring isn't the result of air passing over the vocal cords."

  • 8 years ago

    I love listening to my cat purr, it's so relaxing. Petting a cat while it's purring is actually proven to release human stress. Cars usually purr when they are very happy and feel safe. Although some cats purr when they are extremely scared or feel threatened.

  • 8 years ago

    Aww my cat purrs all the time, it's so cute. First of all, to that mitch guy, I knew that cats usually stop purring when the faucet turns on but it doesn't even bother her anymore and she keeps vibrating like a chainsaw :)

    Okay, I think cats purr because when they were with their mothers they would purr to each other as a sign of affection and feeling secure. If your cat is purring around you, he/she probably loves you and feels safe♥

    As for how..I have no idea xD

    Hope I helped anyway! xoxo

  • Anonymous
    8 years ago

    I'm not sure how they purr but I know they do when they're very happy and content. If you get a cat to purr it means he/she is liking your company and is happy.

    However cats do also purr when they're in severe pain. For instance, whenever my cat is giving birth she is constantly purring because this calms her down and makes her relax more. But I think you would be able to tell the difference if the cat is purring because they're happy or in pain.

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  • 8 years ago

    Cats actually have two sets of vocal cords! One for breathing in and one for out. If you listen to them purr you can hear them purring in and then purring out!

    Nobody really knows why they purr, but there's a theory I really like (might be true or not, but it's a good theory anyway!) If you've ever seen newborn kittens, they not only have their eyes closed but their ears also. So when they are born they are both deaf and blind! Of course they instinctively know how to get their dinner, but they might have trouble finding it! So the theory is that mom purrs so they can follow the vibration.

  • 8 years ago

    I'm not sure how they purr, but I know they do it when they are happy.

  • 8 years ago

    I have no idea, I asked the vet the same thing and he couldnt even give me a good answer. However he did show me how to stop it. Get near a faucet and run water, the sound of water makes them stop.

    Source(s): I have a kitten
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