Full disclosure: I’m a dog person. (So is Sascha.) I love their exuberance. Excessive tail wags radiate into full body wiggles. At dinnertime, table manners are optional as they snarf their food.
And then there are cats. From my cat-ownership experience, felines are completely aloof and obsessed with cleanliness. They eat dinner one nugget at a time and drink daintily, tongues lightly touching the surface of the water.
So how do cats manage to get any liquid to their mouths? Enter scientists with high speed video cameras hunting for an answer.
Experiments often look at models and then explore the real system. This video shows the opposite–the model helps to explain the real system. First, you see a cat drinking. A column of water grows by inertia as the feline pulls its tongue into its mouth. The cat closes its mouth before the column breaks apart. The flat disk represents the surface of a cat’s tongue. It also creates a column of water as it rises.
For more details about the interplay of gravity and inertia, check out the news release.
UPDATE: There’s not much deep science to a dog’s scooping method of drinking. But it still looks cool.