Do you ever wonder if cats understand you? Sure, cats are know for being intuitive animals – but they’re also pretty famous for completely ignoring us humans. But maybe it’s just certain humans…?

Recent research focused on animal cognition has some special information for us cat lovers. The study specifically focused on whether or not cats understand when their human is talking to them. They first observed the cats reaction to person-to-person speech (adult directed speech – or ADD). Then they compared the cats’ response to person-to-cat speech (cat directed speech – or CDD).

If you were under the impression that your cat only understood simple words – like their name or ‘treat’ – this study will blow your mind. First, cats understand far more complex speech – not just simple words. They also make clear distinctions between types of speech. They know when a person is talking to another person (ADD) and essentially ignore this communication. They also clearly distinguish cat-directed speech from a stranger – and also ignore. But cat-directed speech from their own human? Oh yes. They clearly understand, respond, and interact with their human in an intentional way.

Not only does this study demonstrate what many of us cat parents have known intuitively, it proves the special bond we feel with our cats is more than just a feeling. It’s facts. And it’s a wonderful invitation to intentionally and regularly communicate with our feline family members – because now that you’ve read this blog, they know that we know that they know.



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