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Saturday, 24 March 2018

Can The Moon Affect Your Cat Or Dog's Behaviour?

I was recently interested to come across a study that showed that after reviewing the records of twelve thousand cats and dogs over a ten year period a strange pattern emerged.

The study carried out at Colorado State University's Veterinary Medical Center showed that cats and dogs suffering heart attacks, seizures and general trauma turned up in greater numbers around a full moon!

The fullest phase of the moon occurring over twelve days in the moon's twenty-eight day cycle lead to an increase in emergency visits of twenty-three percent for cats and twenty-eight percent for dogs.

Whilst the study threw up no conclusive answers to why this spike had occurred, it did interest me enough to do a little delving of my own.

Regarding cats it was suggested that a possible answer could be that cats spend more time engaging in more risky hunting behaviour during a full moon phase as there is more light available to hunt by.

Whilst this isn't an unreasonable theory, it is known that cats already possess incredible night vision and use nerve receptors in their whiskers to locate potential prey which suggests darker phases of the moon might suit them better when hunting but again, that's just a theory too.

I have read that birds possibly become disorientated during a full-moon phase which leads me to think that perhaps cats have picked up on this and upscale their hunting efforts which leads to more accidents. Again, just a theory.

Dogs are often said to howl during a full moon and, like cats, become more restless. Whilst I have no conclusive answer to this it is interesting to note from a human study here that "it has been scientifically proven that the moon affects the activities and behaviour of the humans in an evident and significant degree"

The study above also went on to mention that, as with the seas and the oceans, the moon also affects the liquids of the bodies of animals and as (like us) cats and dog's bodies are highly composed of water this could well be a significant factor in them feeling a bit different during varying lunar stages.

What we do know is that the moon phases have been shown to interact with the earth's electromagnetic field and as dogs have been shown to have a strong alignment with electromagnetism and there is anecdotal evidence linking cats to it too then it comes as no surprise that this may well affect our pet's behaviour.

There's a fun article here that talks more about how lunar phases could affect your pet.

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