Researchers at the University of Bristol say the superior intelligence of cat owners is unlikely to be caused by their exposure to their pets.
Rather, more educated people tend to work longer hours and choose a pet to fit their lifestyles. Unlike dogs, cats require no walking and can manage with little human company.
Dr Jane Murray, cats protection lecturer in feline epidemiology, who led the study, said: “We don’t think it is associated with income because that was one of the variables we looked at, and there was little difference.
“Cats require less time per day than a dog, so they are more popular with educated people who work late and have long commutes.”
Homes with degree-holders were 1,36 times more likely to have a cat than other households. The same homes were less likely to have a dog than households where no-one went to university.
The study of 2 980 people, published in the Veterinary Record journal, also found that cat owners were more likely to be older and female.
It also revealed that the combined cat and dog population of Britain is more than 20,8 million –– 50% higher than previously thought.–– Daily Telegraph.
WRONG ESCAPE ROUTE: Police in the US say a man suspected of stealing a bottle of Schnapps from a Wyoming grocery store didn’t have the best escape route planned.
Riverton police say the 26-year-old ran out of the store after grabbing the bottle of booze and a package of cough drops last Wednesday and hid in a nearby building, which happened to be the police station.
Police say the man then ran out of the police station, but not before a dispatcher had spied him on the station’s surveillance camera and alerted officers.
The man, who police say was drunk, was caught soon after. He was taken into custody on preliminary charges of resisting arrest and shoplifting. –– AP.
FINDERS WEEPERS: Two Chinese men who found a horde of priceless antiques in an ancient tomb did not realise their value and sold them for pennies.
One of the artworks was a pottery figure of a woman worth nearly £100 000 which they sold for the equivalent of 28 pence.
Feng and Zheng of Guying town, Henan province, say they found the tomb while hunting hares in a field near their homes.
They dug out more than 20 antiques from the tomb, and sold them to a collector for just over £1 000 altogether.
“We don’t know the value of these things. The collector said the pottery meant nothing, so we virtually gave it away,” added Feng.
The pair were shocked to later discover that the tomb they had found dated back to the 1 000-year-old Sui Tang Dynasty. –– Ananova.
ROGUE DRIVER: A South African minibus taxi driver was arrested last Wednesday for transporting 49 children in a 16-passenger vehicle while driving with a blood-alcohol level five times the legal limit, The 26-year-old man was pulled over by a routine checkpoint in the KwaZulu-Natal province, where he was driving the children, who range in age from three to 13 years, to school.
“The man is now behind bars,” Colin Govender of the Road Traffic Inspectorate said. Police in South Africa have recently began to crack down on rogue taxi operators in preparation for the World Cup, during which they hope tourists will use minibuses to get around the country. –– AP.