Why Cats Can't Taste Sweets

Do cats prefer sardines or sweets? Our newest video explains why cats, unlike humans and other mammals, are indifferent to sweet flavors. The video was filmed at the Monell Chemical Senses Center, an institute dedicated to research on taste and smell. Prior to becoming Monell's Director, Gary Beauchamp studied the sweet taste receptor genes of cats in the late 1970s. At the Philadelphia Zoo, he gave lions, tigers, cheetahs and housecats two different types of water-sugar water and regular water. The cats showed no preference to the sugar water, suggesting a physiological difference between other mammals, such as humans, monkeys, and dogs.

Watch the video to find out the cause of your cat's missing sweet tooth.

Produced by the American Chemical Society
Directed and animated by Elaine Seward


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