Hearing in Cats and Dogs: A Sixth Sense

November 5, 2019
If you have a cat or dog, then you've undoubtedly noticed your pet's ability to detect even the slightest sound. Today, we'll take closer look at hearing in cats and dogs.

The amazing hearing ability that animals possess is undeniable. Without a doubt, you’ve witnessed your furry friend hearing someone at the door before they’ve even knocked. You’re not the only one. Hearing in cats and dogs is no doubt a sort of sixth sense.

Hearing in cats and dogs: how does it work?

Hearing in cats and dogs begins in their outer ears. These mammals have the ability to move their ears as they wish in order to better detect sound. Their ears are a sort of parabolic antenna that tilts and rotates as necessary. For humans, these movements are impossible.

Hearing in cats and dogs is a sixth sense.
Source: Gabriel Garcia Marengo
Therefore, dogs and cats can detect sound waves with an intensity so insignificant that humans cannot possibly perceive them.

Their tiny eardrums vibrate as a result of the slightest soundThen, this vibration travels quickly through the rest of the bones that make up the auditory system. In a matter of milliseconds, the sound reaches the brain so that cats and dogs can understand and interpret it.

A very delicate issue

The sense of hearing is very important for animals. In fact, many animals that are born deaf never manage to integrate themselves into society… neither animal society nor human society.

These animals display skittish, aggressive, and fearful attitudes. They are unable to socialize with other dogs and cats and even have a hard time doing so with people. However, with a bit of perseverance and effort, humans can socialize them and help them live happy lives.

Caring for the ears of cats and dogs is vital

Clearly, ears are an extremely important organ for our cats and dogs. Therefore, owners must pay special attention to keep their pet’s ears clean. What’s more, they must quickly tend to any problem that arises, no matter how insignificant it seems.

For example, ear infections are a common problem in pets. It’s important to treat them quickly because they can lead to deafness.

An ear infection is nothing more than an infection of the ear canal that limits hearing in cats and dogs. However, if the infection goes undetected and untreated, it can worsen to the point that there’s no solution. In fact, ear infections can even cause the eardrum to rupture, a condition for which there’s no cure.

So, as soon as owners seek treatment for any issue, the simpler and more successful the treatment will be.

Ear mites, a problem for cats

Ear mites are like tiny spiders that avoid sunlight and artificial light. These parasites affect cats and can dwell on different parts of a cat’s body to hide from the light. However, most of the time they choose to live in their ears.

A kitten with ear mites.
Author: Sausyn

The problem with ear mites is that they can reproduce within the ear and incapacitate the animal’s auditory system. While this is more common in kittens, it can also occur in adult cats.

It’s easy to detect if cats have mites because they will scratch themselves incessantly… even to the point of harming themselves. Therefore, if you see your feline scratching more than usual, don’t hesitate to consult with a veterinarian. This type of infection, like the previous one, is easy to cure as long as treatment is swift.

Don’t hesitate when it comes to taking your pets to the veterinarian if you suspect any problem with their ears. Remember that hearing in cats and dogs is an extremely important resource.