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The Character of Cats


The Character of Cats Cover


Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

There are no seeing-eye cats, guard cats, or sled cats-and for very good reason. Cats-as cat "owners" know-are intractably independent, defying all rules about how and why animals become domesticated. Now, in The Character of Cats, acclaimed author and scientist Stephen Budiansky combines breakthrough scientific research, fascinating lore, and his own infectious fondness for all things feline to elucidate the mysteries of these amazing creatures.

Simultaneously adaptive and perverse, affectionate and suspicious, dependent and aloof, cats are the least tamed and yet the most successful domestic species. Drawing on new research into cat genetics, brain chemistry, evolution, social behavior, and interaction with humans and fellow felines, Budiansky has written the first scientifically based popular book to explore exactly how and why cats are unique. Wide ranging, lively, and engaging, The Character of Cats also covers the full spectrum of feline fact and lore, from history to superstition, from hunting patterns to religious imagery, and from sexual behavior to preferred colors.

Cats are not pets but fellow travelers, one foot in the parlor, one in the wild, and we impose our fantasies and expectations on them at our peril. This smart, wonderfully readable book finally gives cats their due.

Book News Annotation:

This appealing volume offers scientific information that will engage the devoted cat lover about the origins, evolution, habits, eyesight, and expressions of affection, fear, and hostility of their mysterious and wonderful pet. Budiansky is a correspondent for the Atlantic Monthly and has written a similar volume about dogs.
Annotation c. Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (

About the Author

Stephen Budiansky, author of six highly acclaimed books about animals, nature, and science, is a correspondent for the Atlantic Monthly.

Product Details

The Origins, Intelligence, Behavior and Stratagems of Felissilvestris catus
Budiansky, Stephen
Viking Adult
New York
Cats - General
General Pets
Edition Description:
Series Volume:
no. 40
Publication Date:
Grade Level:
x, 227 p.
8.54x5.79x.89 in. .85 lbs.

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Related Subjects

Pets » Cats » Care and Ownership
Pets » Cats » General
Science and Mathematics » Nature Studies » Zoology

The Character of Cats Used Hardcover
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Product details x, 227 p. pages Viking Books - English 9780670030934 Reviews:
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