Validation of a temperament test for domestic cats



Title Validation of a temperament test for domestic cats
Author(s) J. M. Siegford, S. O. Walshaw, P. Brunner, A. J. Zanella
Journal Anthrozoos
Date 2003
Volume 16
Issue 4
Start page 332
End page 351
Abstract Cats are popular companion animals, particularly in Europe and North America, and appear in correspondingly large numbers in animal shelters. Temperament tests are not widely used to assess cats before adoption from shelters. However, cats exhibit a wide range of temperaments as do the families adopting them and ensuring compatibility between the two could increase the rate of successful placement. Scores on a feline temperament profile (FTP), which measures a cat's responses to standardized interactions with an unfamiliar person, were compared between cats and over time and related to responses of cats to familiar and unfamiliar persons and to basal salivary cortisol levels. Cats showed significant differences in FTP scores (p0.05), though there were significant differences in cortisol levels between cats (p=0.04). The data indicate that the FTP was relatively stable over time for adult cats, and test scores correlated well with ethological observations of cats' interactions with humans the FTP could provide an accurate, consistent assessment of cat temperament, leading to more successful placement of cats..

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