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Five facts about … cat paws

Paw pads are colour coordinated

Black cats usually have black paw pads; white or ginger cats usually have pink pads and multi-coloured cats often have a mixture of the two.

Cats walk on their toes

Instead of walking the soles of their feet like we do, cats walk on their tiptoes as this helps them move more quickly and quietly when hunting.

Paws keep cats cool

While we have sweat glands all over our bodies, cats can only sweat through furless areas, such as the bottom of their paws, to keep themselves cool.

Cats can have extra toes

Most cats have 18 toes – five on each front paw and four on each back paw – but some, known as polydactyl cats, can have as many as six or more toes on each.

Paws make climbing down difficult

A cat’s curved claws and strong back legs are great for climbing upwards, but they’re not so good for getting back down.  This is one reason why they can sometimes get stuck up trees.

This piece first appeared on the inside back cover of the winter 2019 issue of The Cat magazine, which is issued by Cats Protection.  My thanks to Francesca Watson, the editor of The Cat magazine for permission to include it on the Daily Mews website.

 

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Two cats are a conspiracy. 
Three cats is an attempted takeover.
Four or more cats is a complete coup!"

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