We know that whiskers have vital roles in a cat’s daily life. They are not just gorgeous long and thick hairs that are placed to make your cat look amazing, they are vitally important for cats. Cat eyebrow whiskers are a part of these vital functions.
Mainly, the cat whiskers are strategically located on a cat’s body. These locations are around the nose and lips, on the chin and cheeks, above the eyes where humans have eyebrows and behind the fore legs. Although we may think that the most used whiskers are the ones around the nose, all whiskers are equally used and equally important. However, the eyebrow whiskers have a special function that the other whiskers don’t have.
What Are the Main Functions of Whiskers?
Generally whiskers can be identified as cat antennas or an additional sensory organs. They receive information from the environment and allow the feline to react accordingly. They can sense even the smallest change in the environment from a little breeze coming from an open window to an insect just passing by.
Cats use these information in different ways. For instance the length of the whiskers around the nose are just in proportion with the cat’s width (except for the cats with health issues such as obesity) and cats use this to size up spaces to know if they can fit in a certain place. Also, they use the whiskers behind their fore legs to “sense” their preys like a wing chun fighter sensing his/her opponent by touching with hands or elbows 😸.
There are many other functions of whiskers but these are subject to another post.
Are Eyebrow Whiskers Eyebrows? What Do They Do?
A simple answer to this question is NO, they are not eyebrows. Technically cats don’t have eyebrows. You don’t believe me? Take a look at your cats face or the photo below if you don’t have a cat. The eyebrows have no function in a cat’s life. As the evolution states; the unnecessary organs don’t appear or stay in an organism.
The functions of the eyebrow whiskers are the same as other whiskers; measure distances, help navigation in the dark, feel the prey, display emotions or communicate, etc. Except for one function that others do not an can not posses: protecting the eyes!
Cat eyes may not be as important as the eyes of a human being because our other senses are not as strong or accurate as a cat’s, nonetheless vision is very important in a cats life. Eyebrow whiskers serve a crucial function in protecting cats’ eyes while they hunt, fight or play.
They act like an early warning system for cats to use their reflexes to avoid any damage to the eye or in other cases to just close their eyes. This early warning system saves a lot of cats from losing their eyes or taking damage to that area.
Can I Cut My Cat’s Eyebrows Whiskers?
Some mother cats “shorten” their kittens whiskers by biting them off when the kitten becomes “too curios” and starts wandering where the mother does not want it to. However, you must always remember, the mother cat knows what she is doing instinctively and you don’t! There are so much the science can not explain about cats that we can not even begin to understand the true nature of these amazing creatures.
So the answer to that question is a huge NO! You may “think” that they are too long but that’s just your opinion, not the nature of the cat. The nature does not care about our opinions or thoughts. It always acts as it needs to. The whiskers are no different on this matter.
Their functions in a cat’s daily life is so important that some cats don’t even want to move after losing their whiskers. Of course, there are occasional shedding and losing the whisker while playing with other pets or in fights but these happen one or two whiskers at a time, not an entire set of whiskers being cut.
For more information on cutting cat whiskers, you may want to have look here.
If your cat loses more than one or two whiskers at a time or if they don’t grow back, please take your cat to your veterinarian to make sure there is no medical condition behind it. You may want to read our post on cats losing their whiskers to have an idea on what is natural and what might be a medical condition
The eyebrow whiskers are as important as any other whisker and they serve vital functions for your cat’s wellbeing. They are one of your cat’s defenses. They are senses for your cat to understand their surroundings. They are not any different than your cat’s auditory or visual senses when it comes to understanding what is going on around them. Take good care of your cat, don’t touch its whiskers.
Have a purrderful day!!!