Instinct and the mother cat school

a great model to imitate

the mother teaches the child how to behave

mother's teaching

When the little ones reach the sixth week of life, the mother cat begins to teach her lessons at different levels: first she catches a mouse and goes to eat it in front of the offspring, in the second step she places a dead prey in front of the little ones and waits that they attack it.

Finally, he captures live specimens waiting for his young to act, helping them if they let them escape.

It must be said, however, that this inhibits the instinct of the mother, in fact she does not feed on prey as long as she is in the presence of the little ones, afterwards she comes to give them up completely.

a kitten plays with its mouse friend

the experiments of Zing-Yang Kuo

The Chinese psychologist conducted several behavioral experiments on the breeding of kittens, he envisaged in exemplary considerations raised by the mother, others (alone) were put in contrast with their primordial instinct (imprinting), that is, for example, bred with a pair of mice, others in a group but separated from the mother.

From these experiments it was possible to deduce that:

  • in cats raised individually with mice there is a phenomenon of imprinting on specimens of different species

  • for cats bred in groups with the type there is a phenomenon of imprinting towards conspecifics, natural stimuli decrease

  • the mother's teaching is able to develop a predatory attitude in the baby

  • there is always a clear subjective variability independent of all experiences


Relationship with other animals


Cats and babies

Portaombrelli design Luca Perlini

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