Around the world, people keep pets for many reasons. One of the most popular pets is the common house cat. They are so cute that even people who don’t want to own a pet cat will watch hours of funny cat videos on YouTube! But what is it that makes them cute? What makes them funny? In this TED video, you will find out:



Let’s go back to the beginning of the video. We are going to do a gap-fill exercise. Listen and fill in the following 6 blank spaces. The words you should listen for are all related to the topic of animals. (Answers below.)

Throughout time, cats were simultaneously solitary ___1___ of smaller animals and prey for larger  ___2___. As both predator and prey, survival of their species depended on ___3___ instinctual behaviors which we still ___4___ in wild and domestic cats today. While the feline actions of your house cat Grizmo might seem ___5___, in the wild, these same behaviors, naturally ___6___ into cats for millions of years, would make Grizmo a super cat.


The topic of pets can come up in the IELTS speaking test. Let’s look at some possible questions and answers.

  1. Do you have any pets?
    • I don’t have any pets at the moment but when I was a child I had a dog. He passed away of old age and we never got a new dog because he was irreplaceable to us.
  2. If you could choose any pet to have, what would you want?
    • I really like cats but I’m allergic to them. If I wasn’t allergic, I’d definitely want to have a pet cat at my house.
  3. How does you family feel about pets?
    • My dad never really showed much interest in animals but my mum loves them. She had cats and dogs when she was a child, and passed on her love of animals to me.


Whether you want to prepare for reading or writing, this PPT should help you get your head around some important  ESL vocabulary for describing pets:


  1. predators
  2. carnivores
  3. crucial
  4. observe
  5. perplexing
  6. bred