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People Are Brushing Their Cats With Toothbrushes To Remind Them Of Their Mothers

My cat rules my house. I stop anything I’m doing to feed her or let her out the second she meows for something. Cats are in charge on TikTok too. The latest TikTok trend is people brushing their cats with a damp toothbrush, as it reminds them of their mother cleaning them as a kitten and relaxes them. It’s absolutely adorable.

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This trend is of course adorable, but is does this really make cats think about their mothers grooming them? A veterinarian from Arlington, Texas said that is a possibility!

https://www.instagram.com/p/B7gtUJVBBYi/

 

 

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He also commented on the trend saying “Although I can’t actually put myself into the mind of a cat (what a world that would be), I can imagine this could remind them of being groomed by their mother at an early age. The mom will normally groom the kittens, especially around the head and neck, until they are old enough to groom themselves. So, when an owner takes on the role of grooming their cat, it certainly could reinforce the fact that they are a mother-like presence or a companion at the very least.”

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“Although not exactly the same, most toothbrushes have nylon bristles that could feel quite similar to the keratin spikes (papillae) that give cat tongues that sandpaper feel. These hundreds of tiny, backward-facing spikes are actually thought to help with grooming and other tasks.”

Another veterinarian, Dr. Max Emanuel from Los Angeles also weighed in, saying, “We can’t converse with cats, so we can’t really know if it actually brings back the memory of being groomed.”

BUT, he also said that even if it doesn’t stir up any fond memories, “It’s tactile stimulation, and brings pleasure to the cat. It’s a social behavior. Just like we enjoy massages, cats enjoy grooming!”

It’s important to remember that not all cats will like the toothbrush trick and to be careful to stop if your cat looks annoyed or upset.

H/T: Buzzfeed