Man holding up cat

Estimated reading time: 3 minutes

If you’re a fan of cat videos, you might have seen the “dangle test.” Made popular by a veterinarian named Dr. Tori Given, this test claims to gauge your kitten’s temperament. Given showcased this on TikTok, where the trend quickly gained traction.

But just how reliable is the dangle test? This article delves into the origins, how to perform the test, and alternatives to help you get a better idea.

Origin of the Cat Dangle Test

The dangle test didn’t just appear out of nowhere. Credit goes to Dr. Tori Given, a Florida-based veterinarian. She first started out on TikTok trying to share interesting cases that she saw in the clinic. Soon, her videos became a hit, especially the one featuring the dangle test.

The test aims to do one thing: assess a kitten’s temperament. Dr. Given suggests that if you hold up a puppy or kitten and they loosely dangle without stress, then they will grow to be nicely tempered dogs and cats.

How to Perform the Cat Dangle Test

The Proper Technique

So, how do you actually perform this test? The key is in the hold. Keep the cat’s arms level with its head. This ensures that the cat dangles safely. The aim is to make the cat’s arms and shoulders as one unit. Holding the kitten this way lowers the risk of it squirming out of your hands.

Safety Measures

Safety is a priority here. One way to ensure dangle safety is to keep the cat close to your body. This supports its weight and makes it less likely for any mishaps to occur. If done wrong, the cat might feel discomfort or even stress, which contradicts the whole point of the test.

Is the Dangle Test Reliable?

The Science—or Lack Thereof

Here’s where things get a bit tricky. The dangle test is not a scientifically proven method for assessing a cat’s temperament. So if you’re looking for rock-solid proof, you won’t find it here. Some veterinarians, aside from Dr. Given, question its reliability.

Factors That Can Affect Results

Cats are independent creatures. This means that a cat’s temperament might make them react differently to the test on various days. Maybe today your cat passes the test with flying colors, and tomorrow, she’s a menace. So, it’s essential to understand that the dangle test might not give consistent results.

Alternative Methods for Assessing Temperament

ASPCA Feline Spectrum Assessment

If you’re skeptical about the dangle test, you’re not alone. There are other ways to get to know your cat’s personality. One reliable option is the ASPCA Feline Spectrum Assessment. This temperament test is backed by research and offers a more comprehensive look at your cat’s temperament.

The New Space Test

Want another method? Try introducing your cat to a new space. Place a cat carrier in a new room, open the door, and observe. How long does it take for the cat to step out and explore? This can offer clues about your pet’s confidence level and curiosity.

Interactive Play

Last but not least, there’s interactive play. Take some toys and engage with your cat. If the cat shows interest and plays back, you’ve likely got a feline with a good temperament. On the flip side, a cat that ignores the toy might be more independent.

Final Thoughts

So there you have it, everything you need to know about the Cat Dangle Test. While it gained fame on TikTok and sparked curiosity among cat owners, its reliability remains a topic for debate. Remember, a single test like the dangle test shouldn’t be your only guide in assessing your cat’s temperament.

If you’re keen on getting to know your feline friend better, try multiple methods. Maybe even consult your local vet for their expert opinion. The key is patience and consistent observation in various contexts. After all, every cat is unique, and it takes time to understand their true nature.

Thank you for taking the time to read this article. We hope it helps you and your feline friends live their best, healthiest lives.

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Written by Tom Cashman

I have grown up with pets for almost fifty years. My family has strong ties to the animal shelter community in Chicago. Currently I have two cats: an orange tabby named Zelda, and a gray mixed named Zander. Like all of my pets, they were adopted from a local animal shelter. Pet Zone represents my passion for sharing with the pet community.

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What is the Cat Dangle Test?

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  1. I had never heard of the dangle test before so I have been enlightened. I just did it with my cat and she looked at me strangely (probably wondering what was going on) LOL. Anyway, it was a bit of fun – thanks for sharing!

  2. I have never heard of the dangle test for cats. That’s a really interesting way to get to know your kitty.