One of the internet’s most popular questions is, “Do cats taste their poop?” And finally, we have an answer. A team of researchers at the University of California, Davis, set out to answer this question— their findings were published in the journal Applied Animal Behavior Science. So, what did they discover? Let’s take a look.
Do cats taste their poop?
There are a variety of opinions on whether cats taste their poop. Some people believe cats are simply curious and want to know what their feces smell like.
Others believe that cats may be licking their anus to clean themselves.
However, the most likely explanation is that cats taste their poop to determine its nutritional content.
A study by the University of Lancaster found that cats consume around 10% of the proteins in their feces.
This suggests that cats use Taste-Off sampling to get information about their feces’ nutrient content and decide whether it is worth consuming.
While it may seem gross to us, tasting poop is normal behavior for cats and helps them to stay healthy.
First, a bit of background.
It’s long been thought that cats consume feces as part of their grooming routine; when they lick themselves clean, they inevitably ingest some stool along the way.
However, there’s never been any scientific evidence to support this claim—until now. The UC Davis study found that, indeed, cats do consume feces on occasion.
The researchers believe that there are two reasons for this behavior.
- First, it could be a throwback to our feline friends’ wild ancestors. In the wild, consuming feces is a way for cats to get extra nutrients and vitamins they might not otherwise get from their diet.
- Second, it could be simply because cats enjoy the taste!
After all, we know that cats are notoriously picky eaters—so if they’re going to consume something that isn’t strictly necessary for their survival, it had better taste good.
So there you have it: the verdict on whether or not cats taste their poop is finally in. And while the findings of this study may not be exceptionally delicious, they’re certainly interesting—and provide valuable insight into our feline friends’ behavior.
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