Amazingly cats can hear the tiniest sound and gauge direction and distance from the sound. A cat’s hearing is about 5 times greater than a human’s, particularly with high-pitched sounds. Dogs have more pitch range, but otherwise their hearing abilities only about one-third that of cats.
According to scientists, cats can actually sense earthquakes even before scientists’ instruments do. It is thought this may be due to a cat’s ability to hear noises inside the earth.
And the story about cats predicting storms when they wash their ears could be true. Before a storm there is a buildup of electrical charges in the air. Cats are thought to be attempting to push away the sounds of the charges.
The Chinese have used cats as an early warning system to predict earthquakes. Cats move their ears in different directions to judge the distance of a sound and to pinpoint the spot it is coming from. Interesting note: The ability to locate the direction of a sound is partly determined by the distance between the ears.
Dog whistles can be used to train cats as well. These ultrasonic whistles are so named because they make sounds above a human’s hearing capabilities. If you blow the whistle and then offer your cat a treat, he/she will associate the sound with something pleasant. Eventually you may be able to dispense with the treat and offer a pat.
Of course to we humans, it appears cats only hear what they are interested in.