from small, gentle house cats to wild lions and tigers, belong
to the same family. There
are about 40 different kinds (species) of cats, including the
house cat, cheetah, leopard, puma, cougar, panther, kingcat, jaguar,
lion, tiger, wildcat, lynx, bobcat, ocelot, jaguarundi, and others.
on their toes; their heel bones do not touch the ground. They
have five toes on each foot and small pads on their feet that
cushion their walk and allow them to move quietly.
Cats are among
the best hunters of the flesh-eating animals (carnivores). They
have 30 to 32 teeth which are designed for cutting and tearing
flesh. They all have curved claws which help them grip and tear
the flesh of their prey. Most
cats hunt at night. They have a highly developed sense of smell,
keen hearing, and can see well in dim light. Their eyes glow in
the dark. Cats are graceful animals with excellent control over
their muscles. Their flexible backbones allow them to twist and
turn easily. They
are good climbers and can balance themselves easily. They can
run fast for short distances and take powerful leaps.
cats are the color of the dry grass, leaves, and bare rock which
makes up their environment. In the wild, cats usually have two
to five cubs every other year. House cats can have litters of
two to five kittens more frequently.
make wonderful pets. They are neat, quiet, graceful, and keep
themselves clean with their rough tongue. They need less care
than dogs. They should be given a warm, dry place for sleeping,
lots of water, plenty of healthy food, and lots of gentle love.
Their babies are called kittens.