Feline Face Shape: A Health and Wellness Study

Jun 12, 2019 / General News / Research News / Veterinary Clinical Medicine

Calling All Cat Owners!

To gather information about whether the shape of a cat’s face could be related to its overall wellness, veterinarians at the University of Illinois College of Veterinary Medicine are inviting cat owners everywhere to complete a short online survey.

“Cats come in all shapes and sizes,” says Dr. Heidi Phillips, a veterinary surgeon who is spearheading the study. “That’s one of the beautiful and amazing things about them.

“In some cases, a cat’s breed, coat or eye color, body size, or face shape can be linked to particular behaviors and habits. Coat color, for example, has been linked to personality.”

Dr. Phillips and her colleagues at the University of Illinois are launching a study to determine whether a cat’s face shape is associated with lifestyle and wellness characteristics.

“As veterinarians dedicated to improving our understanding of pets, we are trying to determine if any aspect of cats’ health, habits, or daily activities is related to appearance,” says Dr. Phillips. “By participating in this study, cat owners will provide valuable information that may lead to improved quality of life for cats.”

She hopes the online survey will be completed by hundreds or thousands of cat owners. The survey asks owners about the frequency of their cats’ behaviors related to eating and drinking, breathing, sleeping, grooming, playing, and other daily activities. Owners of more than one cat may complete the survey multiple times, giving information specific to only one cat each time.

Responses from all owners will be collated and compared at the end of the study to learn if any noteworthy conclusions can be made. No personal data about the owner is requested in the survey.

To thank owners for completing the survey, they will be given an opportunity to submit a photo of their cats to be featured on the website and social media channels of the University of Illinois College of Veterinary Medicine. The submission of a photo is not required or related to the content of the survey in any way.

For more information and to complete the survey, visit: go.illinois.edu/Felinesurvey