Do cats know their name? Dogs often come running at the sound of their name, so we can't help but wonder if their fellow four-legged friends respond in kind. It turns out that cats can learn to recognize their names, but it may require a bit of training first.
In a July 2013 article published in the journal Animal Cognition, researchers sought to answer the question of whether cats know their name. The owners would leave their cats in the experiment, and then the researchers would play clips of different voices, including those of the cats' owners. Then, the researchers would record reactions such as head and ear movements that signaled that the cats were responding to their owners' voices. The results, according to the researchers, indicated that cats can distinguish between human voices.
So, if cats can tell when their owners are calling, why aren't more of them trained to come when their names are called? Dogs were pack animals before they were domesticated, so it makes sense that they still have a biological instinct to submit to the pack leader, aka you. Conversely, cats are considered solitary creatures, so they're less receptive to having a master.
That said, there's still a way to train your kitty to respond to his or her name if you're determined. You may want to get some treats (and lots of them) when you first start out, as this process will take some time. First, try to gett your cat's attention. This is easily achievable using those aforementioned treats as bait. Then, feed your cat the treats without using his or her name. After doing that for a bit, you want to start using their name before you give them treats. You should repeat this step a few times at different spots around the house to ensure your cat isn't just following you for treats. Eventually, you should be able to call your cat from anywhere and he or she will come running.
Of course, even if you train your cat to come when he's called, there's no guarantee that he'll listen!