Cat parents will do almost anything to keep their kittens happy. So when an amazing idea pops up on social media, we feel compelled to try it out with our cats.
And the latest trend in pampering cats could remind cats of the comfort they knew on their mother’s paws. Since we love cat parents, we went to the toothbrushes!
Thanks to a recent TikTok trend, people are grooming cats with a damp toothbrush, as rumor has it that cats should be reminded of their mothers.
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Toothbrushes and a mother’s love
Before kittens learn to care for themselves, their mothers do the work for them, using scratchy tongues to keep their babies clean. In this safe place by their mother’s side, kittens feel safe and comfortable. The damp toothbrush bristles are believed to resemble the services of a mother cat. And it seems to transport adult cats into a bliss of comforting memory.
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When asked if toothbrushes really remind cats of their mothers, Hunter Finn, an associate veterinarian who works with Arlington, Texas animals, told BuzzFeed, “Though I can’t really put myself inside a cat’s head (what for a world that would be I can imagine that this could remind them that they were cared for by their mother when they were young. “
So the toothbrush might very well remind them of their mothers. That is, if a human parent takes up caring activities, “this could certainly reinforce the fact that it is a maternal presence or at least a companion.”
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But why does a toothbrush feel like a mother cat’s tongue?
“While not exactly the same, most toothbrushes have nylon bristles, which might feel very similar to the keratin tips (papillae) that make cat’s tongues feel like sandpaper. These hundreds of tiny, rearward-facing spines are actually believed to aid in grooming and other chores. “
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Not all cats care for the toothbrush
When it comes to the practical application of grooming a cat with a toothbrush, the reactions are different. There are dozens of kittens trapped under the bristles in sheer joy. But not all cats enjoy toothbrush care and that’s fine.
Dr. Finn cautions against looking out for any signs that the toothbrush is causing stress in your cat. “Going viral on TikTok is NOT worth the cat’s scratch or bite if you misunderstand any part of the cat’s body language. Signs of a stressed cat include dilated pupils, ears leaning against the head, crouched posture with legs under the body, sprained or violently snapping tail, and of course growling or hissing voices. “
And then there are the kittens who enjoy being cared for but think the toothbrush is a better toy!
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H / T: www.buzzfeed.com
Feature Image: @ _uko__lingo / Instagram