How can my cat know that a thunderstorm is on its way an hour before I do? © Getty

How can my cat know that a thunderstorm is on its way an hour before I do?

Your cat can use its heightened senses to detect when a storm is brewing. It's like having your own furry weatherman at home.

Asked by: Carel Lucas, Perth, Australia

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Cats and many other animals are more sensitive than humans to sounds, smells and changes in atmospheric pressure, and their heightened senses can allow them to pick up hints that a storm is coming well before their owners catch wind of it.

Just before a storm, your cat’s inner ears may detect the sudden fall in atmospheric pressure, and she may have learned to associate this with an impending storm. If a storm is already raging in the distance, she may be able to perceive the faint rumble of thunder.

Likewise, she may be able to smell the incoming rain, or the characteristic whiff of ozone gas, which is often created by lightning and has a sharp, metallic odour.

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