Cat Skulls - Five Interesting Facts About Feline Skulls
The 2020 Covid pandemic caused an explosion in pet ownership. As such, someone close to you may have recently purchased a pet. Since there are more than 88.3 million cats in households across America, your newly pet-owning friend or family member has likely bought a cat.
If so, you probably think that a cat care item or a cat theme item would make a perfect gift. While this is a good idea, there's a certain risk involved with this plan. You may see that this cat owner already has the item that you purchased for them.
To avoid this issue, you need to purchase a highly unique gift for your feline-loving friend. If you need an idea in this area, cat skulls may be your answer. While your friend might find it morbid at first, they should eventually enjoy being able to learn more about their cat through this item.
However, you may find it difficult to know if what you're searching for online is a genuine cat skull. If so, read on to learn 5 facts about cat skulls that you can use to identify one.
1. There Are Front-Facing Eyes on a Cat's Skull
Before you learn some interesting facts about cats and their skulls, you should learn about the skulls of carnivores. Doing so will allow you to quickly separate a cat's skull from that of many other animals. This is because there are many anatomical features that separate carnivores from herbivores.
The term 'carnivore' refers to an animal that eats meat. As you can probably tell from typical cat behavior, these animals are members of this group. Other members of this group include dogs, bears, sea lions, and more.
One feature that carnivores have but herbivores (plant-eating animals) don't involves their eyes. Carnivores' eyes point straight ahead. Herbivores have eyes that sit on either side of their head and look left and right.
Front-facing eyes give carnivores several benefits when they are hunting prey. This eye placement gives carnivores binocular or stereoscopic vision. This allows them to see and judge depth, which helps them track and pursue prey.
Have you ever seen cat videos and/or pictures or met one in real life? If so, you should know that these cute creatures have front-facing eyes. You should see the same on their skulls.
2. There Are 30 Teeth in a Cat Skull
Looking at the teeth on a skull is another way to tell the difference between a carnivore and a herbivore. Most carnivores have many long, sharp teeth. These allow carnivores to easily tear and rip flesh.
However, these aren't the only type of teeth that carnivores have. They also often have flatter molars that are positioned towards the back of their mouths. These help the animals grind up the remains of their prey before swallowing.
You can find these types of teeth in the mouths of cat skulls. As a whole, there are four different types of cat teeth. The names of these are incisors, canines, premolars, and molars.
The incisors are the smaller sharp teeth at the front of the mouth. These are between the two very long and sharp canine teeth. To the right and left of the canines are the premolars and then the molars.
3. There Are 14 Bones Inside a Cat Skull (Not Including Teeth)
Now that you know the more obvious facts about cat skulls, you can move on to the lesser-known ones. If you move beyond the teeth and eyes, you can begin to look for the 14 bones that make up the cat skull. You can find some information about a few of these below.
There's the mandible, which comprises the mouth and is made of three main parts. The most noticeable of these is the lip region (maxilla), which is long, thin, and curved. It also has ridges that help a cat hold onto its prey.
The mastoid process around the lower back of the skull. It looks like an upside-down teardrop. It also has round edges with sharp edges between them.
4. There Are Flat and Large Cat Skulls
Another piece in the set of interesting facts about cats is that some cats are dramatically different in appearance from each other. Some have flatter faces than others and this shows up in their skulls. Because of this difference, experts call one type of cat skull brachycephalic (flat-skulled) and the other type dolichocephalic (large-skulled).
There are many features that a large cat skull has that a flat cat skull doesn't have. The large cat skull is longer and the frontal bones are more prominent. You also won't see an arch or dome shape on a large cat skull as this is only a common feature on flat-skulled cats.
5. There Are Several Ways Cat Skulls Differ From Other Animals
Beyond the carnivorous skull features, some features make cat skulls different from those of all other animals. For one thing, the bones and cartilage on a cat's skull are thinner than they are on other animals. This creates a depressed surface area that isn't present in other animals.
In addition, a cat's skull is a lot more flexible in comparison to those of other animals. This helps them slip through narrow spaces more easily. This is the main reason for the old internet cat humor saying: 'cats are liquid'.
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In sum, you can identify cat skulls by their front-facing eyes, sharp teeth, thin cartilage, and the shapes of the skull's bones. You can also differentiate the skulls of different cat breeds by knowing how the features of large skulls and flat skulls differ.
Did you find this interesting? If so, you're in luck. The rest of this site is covered with pieces about cat humor, cat facts, and more.
To get you started, check out our article on cat name suggestions.
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