Why do cats draw back their lips when they sniff something strange?

Wednesday Why day 😉

This post is written by ICatCare | @ICatCare

Why do cats draw back their lips when they sniff something strange?

The flehmen response occurs not just in cats, but in horses and deer and other animals where is it a bit easier to see.

On the outside it looks like the cat’s grinning or even grimacing as it opens its mouth and draws the air into sample it. This usually happens when it’s sniffing the urine of a cat that’s in season or where a tom has sprayed.

It gives cats a great deal of information about that scent as it enables it to draw in the air over a special organ called Jacobson’s organ found in the roof of the mouth behind the front teeth. Here the cat can concentrate the scent and smell/taste it, giving it a lot of information.
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