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The paw of your cat is not like your feet. Yes, in some ways they are similar. Like your feet, the paws of your cat helps it to stand. The difference between you and your cat in terms of this appendage is that the paws of your cat are engineered for predatory functions. The proportion of cat's legs is much larger than humans. If human legs were built as our kitties' the feet would be as long as the shins. Cat paws are also much cuter to look at.
Do understand that your cat, like all other cats, walk on its tiptoe. The feline is a digitigrade walker. It means your car does not walk on the balls and heels as you do. It walks on the feet balls and on fingertips. Since its paws are small, and her pads soft, your cat can move soundlessly on any terrain. The paw pads are both tender and tough. The cat's skin pads are adequately robust to provide protection from punctures when it walks on hard terrain. The problem is that the pads are no protection against the extreme temperatures. The paws are made for hunting and come with touch receptors which permit it to evaluate location, liveliness, and texture of prey. Acute sensitivity present in paw pads mean it can swiftly detect how hot the surface or how cold it is. Cat claws are not like fingernails. The claw actually grows out of bones.
Oil secretion and sweat
The cat paws contain glands between the paw pads. These secrete oil. The latter has a scent which can be detected only by felines. The scent gets deposited when the cat scratches any surface like a tree or a couch or a scratching post, a few tiny drops of her scent gets deposited. This is the cat equivalent of a human scratching a name on furniture like “Bill was here!”. Do remember that cats sweat via their paws. This is more pronounced if your cat is nervous. The sweat becomes so much that marks are made on the surface. The function of the sweat glands is to regulate the body temperature of the cat and keep it balanced. These glands sweat maximum when the cat becomes extremely nervous.
Paw pads come in a number of colors. The pigment of the cat pad is the same as its skin. Black pads are observed in black cats. Graying pads are seen in gray cats and orange pads are to be found in the orange case. The cat pads could take any color when it comes to multicolored cats. Many cat owners have found to their amusement that their multi-colored cat has different colored pads on each of the four paws.