Animals

What are cat whiskers for?

The whiskers of the cat, plays an important role. Also called vibrisas, they are an important touch sensory tool that allows them to navigate in the dark and get away from possible predators.

Considered as specialized hairs, the vibrisas grow in a cat's snout, above its eyes and in other parts of the body, such as the ears, jaws and front legs. At the root of each of these long and rigid hairs, there is a follicle full of nerve terminals.

The vibrisas allow cats to feel their exact location, size and texture, even in the dark, this ability is particularly useful for moving in narrow spaces without getting stuck, as well as to detect changes in air currents, which warn about the approach of possible threats.

On the other hand, the whiskers of the cat are a good indication for humans of the mood of cats, when they are stretched back, near the face, they indicate that the cat feels threatened. Instead, when they are relaxed and pointing in the opposite direction of the face, they are proof of a happy feline.