Both Humans And Cats Have Identical Brain Regions For Emotion


For all those cat owners out there, have you ever had the feeling that you and your cat are actually really similar? Just think about it. You like sleeping, your cat loves sleeping. You enjoy lazing around in the sun; your cat is literally the master of lazing in the sun. You judge people; your cat judges you, immensely. Like…to the point that you have to question how something that doesn’t even have the capability of human language can judge you so harshly that all it takes is a look to make you question all of your life choices (don’t feel bad, I’ve been there, done that, cried on the kitchen floor and contemplated how my cat got so much power over me). As you can see, you and your cat share a number of similarities. But, did you ever stop and wonder if these similarities go beyond affect?

Well, it turns out they do. Nicholas Dodman, an animal behavior chief at the Tufts University School of Veterinary Medicine in Boston, found that cats and humans have almost identical brain structures – specifically in the region which controls emotion (Hickman, 2012). Like humans, cats have a temporal, occipital, frontal and parietal lobe in their brains. Additionally, cat brains also contain gray and white matter and the connections within their brains seem to mirror those of humans.

Furthermore, Dodman explains, cats’ brains release neurotransmitters in a similar pattern to that of humans when confronted with information from their five senses (2014). Cats also have a short- and long-term memory, and are able to recall information from up to 16 hours in the past, which, is probably better than some humans (Hickman, 2012). As such, it would seem that cats and humans are more similar than one may have initially thought. Maybe dogs should make room for cats as man’s new best friend? Food for thought.





Cat intelligence. (2014). Retrieved October 16, 2014, from http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cat_intelligence

Hickman, G. (2012). How does a cat brain compare with a human brain? Retrieved October 16, 2014, from http://www.petsadviser.com/behaviors/cat-brain-compared-human-brain/

How smart is your cat? (2010). Retrieved October 16, 2014, from http://www.catwatchnewsletter.com/issues/14_2/features/140970-1.html

Masters, M. (n.d.). Do cats experience emotions from the same part of their brains as humans? Retrieved October 16, 2014, from http://pets.thenest.com/cats-experience-emotions-same-part-brains-humans-9506.html

Edited by: Brandon Harrower
Edited by Tatum Wilson


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Written by Cassey Hidalgo

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Cassey Hidalgo recently graduated from Fordham University with a B.S. in Psychology and Philosophy and is currently in the process of attempting to get her Master's in Forensic Psychology at John Jay College of Criminal Justice. She is a 22 year old riddled with social anxiety and a terrible case of insomnia but do not fret, she takes it all in stride and tends to dance, sing, and laugh at herself quite a lot. When she is not participating in the party in her head she is often times reading anything from distinguished research journals focused on new psychological findings to queer friendly fanfiction. She likes art of any kind, music, and food. Currently she has undertaken the task of teaching herself Sign language and curse words in ten different languages, needless to say the endeavor is proving to be quite interesting if the stares from the people around her are anything to go by.

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Both Humans And Cats Have Identical Brain Regions For Emotion