Why Do Cats Have Whiskers?

A cat's curious expression isn't complete without twitching whiskers. Learn why cats have whiskers and how they help cats in their everyday lives.

A cat's curious expression isn't complete without twitching whiskers. Learn why cats have whiskers and how they help cats in their everyday lives.

Cats have whiskers for the same reason dogs do – to help sense -- and often rely on them more than dogs, as cats are more likely to put themselves is precarious positions.

Whiskers are tactile hairs found in mammalian skin -- usually the muzzle, lip, eyelids, face, and throat. They are also known as sinus hairs (or vibrissae). The base of the hair is embedded into a sinus that contains many nerve fibers. These special hairs detect pressure and can aid in movement by enhancing the animal's ability to sense its surroundings.

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