Has it ever bothered you why certain animals, like cats for example, have whiskers and we do not? Besides from the fact that they are part of their biological makeup, there are actually many other reasons why cats have whiskers, and why they appear where they are.
Cat whiskers are different to the other hairs on a cat. Whiskers are much thicker than all the other hairs on the cat’s body, and they grow in fewer numbers too. The cat’s whiskers grow only on a certain part of their body, which is the whisker pad, the most prominent of which is located on their faces. However, cats also have whisker pads right above their eyes and at the back of their front legs.
Cats mostly use their whiskers to feel around. They get to know more about their surroundings with the help of these hairs. Thus, if a cat tries to go under or over certain obstacles, you might actually see that they try to feel it out with their whiskers first before getting their whole body through it. The whiskers can also be used to measure things like temperature and wind current. Knowing the latter helps them to find out if someone is approaching them, and helps them to locate certain objects or places.
So, why are whiskers mostly located on the face? The reason is simple. It is easier for them to feel things with the whiskers on their faces because nothing else is blocking it, and they can test things out without subjecting their whole body to the obstacle. If you want to stroke your cat’s whiskers, always remember to be careful, because you might hurt your pet. Besides, you might actually pull out a few strands and disable your cat from feeling its surroundings.