Originally Posted by Matthew Shea
The cat has been right in 25 cases that they've observed. There must be something to this.
I heard about this yesterday - I asked some people who know animals very well what was going on, and there's actually a pretty simple explanation. It has nothing to do with the cat seeing spirits or sensing something else out there!
Like humans, animals often like certain smells over others. For example, some humans love the scent of chocolate, while others much rather prefer the smell of vanilla candles. Likewise, some animals - we'll say cats in this example - like the smell of tuna fish, while other cats love the smell of catnip much, much more. I've heard of some cats even loving the scent of bleach over everything!
A human's body starts decaying about 5~10 hours before death, and if you work around old people who are dying long enough - especially in nursing home areas - you'll begin to notice this smell. Most likely, what I would say with 99.999% confidence, is that this cat likes the smell of decaying bodies. He finds the patients that are about to die, and stays with them until they pass away. That explains his 1) amazing accuracy, and 2) timing - why he goes to the people with ~4 hours left. The body is already beginning to decompose, the cat just picks out the right people due to loving the scent. Hey, it's whatever the cat likes!
See? No other worldly spirits! Not a psychic animal! Just one who likes a strange smell.