Cats have highly developed olfactory systems, allowing them to find all kinds of things with their cute little button noses. Dogs get all the attention for their skilled sniffers, but cats also have highly developed olfactory systems, allowing them to find out all kinds of things with their cute little button noses. When those lovely button noses lead kittens to things we humans wouldn’t consider intrinsically sniffable–in particular, ears and the stuff that can come out of them–it can be a touch disturbing. What is it about Earwax that makes some cats so excited?
What’s In Earwax?
We all recognize Earwax, but do you know what’s inside it? Dead skin cells that come off in the ear canal are one of the main components of Earwax. The gland secretions are then combined with the dead cells. Two distinct glands produce Earwax.
The sebaceous gland is one, while the ceruminous gland is the other. The ceruminous gland is in charge of excreting sweat, which is a component of the earwax mixture. The external auditory canal contains this gland. The sebaceous gland differs from other glands in that it is found all over the body in hair-covered areas. Sebum, an oily substance, will be secreted by these glands. These glands are located in the outer ear canal, where you may see hair. You’ve got yourself a fantastic earwax mixture! That mixture contains proteins, cholesterol, fatty acids, and, in most cases, hair.
Why Do Cats Like Earwax?
Even though we would never think of Earwax as a nutritious material, these lipids and proteins provide nutritional benefits to a cat. Cats are naturally drawn to it as a result. Their brains detect the aroma of those proteins and lipids as sustenance and are drawn to it. This explains why cats lick one other’s ears so furiously. They’re attempting to eat!
Is it safe for cats to eat ear wax?
However, it is not a negative situation for them. Dead skin cells, fatty acids, and trace levels of cholesterol can all be found in Earwax. These are proteins, and the aroma of Earwax attracts cats and confident dogs. Cats, in particular, are sensitive to the smell of animal proteins.
Why are cats drawn to Earwax?
Our sense of smell pales in comparison to that of cats. Cats have 200 million scent receptors in their nasal cavity, compared to our 5 million odour-sensitive cells. Apart from that, they have a second “nose” in the roof of their mouth called the vomeronasal organ, which detects pheromone odours that ordinary receptors miss. As a result, their sense of smell is a potent mechanism for them.
While the majority of a cat’s senses are acute, the taste is the one that has been muted. They only have a few hundred taste buds compared to humans, who have around 10,000. It’s no wonder, however, that a cat will rely on its nose to figure out its surroundings rather than its eyes. As a result, cats do not have a sophisticated sense of taste. They, like humans, only respond to the four basic taste varieties of sour, bitter, salt, and sweet, with sweet being the least responsive.
The sense of smell is responsible for the majority of our flavor perception. Our understanding of smell determines the difference in flavor between foods. It’s logical to imagine that cats utilize a similar combination of scent and taste to assess the palatability of food. As disgusting as it appears and tastes to humans, Earwax is not nearly as unpleasant to cats. In summary, cats’ taste buds are not as sensitive to Earwax as ours are. Cats, on the other hand, dislike a lot of odours that humans don’t.
Proteins from animals
We think of Earwax as unpleasant and disgusting. Finding a gooey yellow material in your or other people’s ears isn’t exciting. Earwax, on the other hand, is highly beneficial to our overall health.
It’s difficult to believe that something so unpleasant may be so vital to the health of your ears. However, the fact that Earwax is sticky and stinky is precisely why it is functional. Earwax acts as a natural barrier, keeping dirt and bacteria out of the inner workings of your ears. It also serves as a lubricant and a fence for your ear canal. It also has anti-insect properties. The odour of Earwax repels pests, but the stickiness captures those who enter by accident.
Why Do Cat’s Like The Taste Of Earwax?
Earwax appears to be intriguing to cats because of its nutritional content, as a lump of Earwax contains animal proteins.
These are antimicrobial peptides, ten of which scientists have already detected in Earwax.
The fragrance of animal proteins attracts cats, which is why they lick Earwax that contains them. Animal proteins come from fish, chicken, and cattle sources and are found in cat food as byproducts.
Dirt and bacteria are kept out of the inner workings of your ears by Earwax, which works as a natural barrier. It also acts as a lubricant and a wall to keep your ear canal clean. It has anti-insect effects as well. Earwax’s odour deters pests, but its stickiness attracts those who enter by accident. We associate Earwax with unpleasantness and disgust. It’s not particularly exciting to discover a sticky yellow substance in your or other people’s ears. Earwax, on the other hand, is good for our overall health.
Although cats have taste buds, they do not function in the same way that humans do. As a result, what kids desire to eat may not be the same as what we want to eat.
Cats, it turns out, really enjoy Earwax. The smell of dead skin cells, fatty acids, and cholesterol are too much for a cat to resist. So, if you notice your cats scratching their ears excessively or stealing your used Q-tips, you’ll know why. It’s nothing to be concerned about. However, as a general safety precaution, you shouldn’t allow your cat to go after the wax that’s still within your ears.