You and your cat are total besties who tell each other everything. You鈥檝e got all the cat lover gifts a gal could want, and sometimes you might even wonder if you actually are聽a cat. There鈥檚 no doubt you share a bond that goes beyond cuddling: You two understand each other! And while we know that cats use vocal communication exclusively with humans, the intricacies of their 鈥渟peech鈥 is murky at best. A new project out of Lund University in Sweden may change that as researchers aim to better understand the science of just how humans and cats communicate.

cat

The study, led by researcher Susanne Schotz, Associate Professor of Phonetics, will take place over the course of five years, concluding in 2021. She and her team will work with between 30 and 50 cats and owners to try and understand the effects of intonation, dialect, accents and speaking styles in cat and human vocal communication.

Schotz believes that cats use different melodies and pitches in their meows to communicate varying emotions, needs and wants. She also thinks cats from specific regions have specific accents in their meows. She and her team will record the cats鈥 vocalizations in varying settings and circumstances and analyze them to find patterns in emotions, breeds and locations.

Brit_Cat's Meow_v1

Additionally, the researchers will record the humans speaking to their cats; the team will play back these recordings to the cats to analyze their responses. Do cats prefer 鈥渂aby talk,鈥 or are they more responsive when talked to like an adult human?

鈥淭he results may have profound implications for how we communicate with cats in our homes, in care facilities, animal hospitals and shelters,鈥 Schotz says. We鈥檙e excited to see what kind of new conclusions this study will bring, though we鈥檙e pretty sure that plaintive meow we get in our ear every morning at 5am means 鈥渇eed me now,鈥 no further research required.

With all this cat talk, we鈥檙e now dying to see your precious baby! Tag us @BritandCo on Instagram in your next kitty selfie so we can see!

(Photo via Getty, image via Brit + Co)