I’m quite a big fan of pointless research, but this really didn’t need to be done. It involved the department of veterinary behaviour at Lincoln University. I imagine this studies animal behaviour, not that of veterinary surgeons.
Professor Daniel Mills and his band of merry men performed a test usually associated with assessing the bonds between young children and their parent, and adopted it to study 20 cats and their ‘owners,’ though as we all know any person who claims to own a cat is severely delusional. They took the cats and put them in unfamiliar surroundings with the owner, with a stranger, or alone. The researchers then looked for signs of attachment including the amount of contact the cat sought, and signs of stress (mainly vocalisation, or miaowing if you want to get technical.)
I’ll paraphrase the good professor. In a nutshell, cats don’t give a rat’s arse about their owners. Couldn’t care less. The moggies sometimes vocalised, but this seemed to be a sign of frustration or a learned response, because the cats showed absolutely no sign at all of any ‘secure attachment’ to the owner.
Whoever would have thought it?
By the way, do the same tests on dogs and unsurprisingly they become fawning big girl’s blouses. Which is precisely why catpeople like cats and not dogs.