The magnitude 7.1 earthquake that struck the Turkish city of Van on October 23rd of last year has led to an increase in feline suicide attempts, according to Professor Abuzer Tas of the Faculty of Veterinary Studies at Van's Century University.

"After the quake that jolted Van, a large number of cats are throwing themselves from heights," said Prof. Tas, who attributes the suicidal tendencies to psychological disorders developed as a direct result of the quake.

"They are getting fidgety by remaining in confined areas for a long time," he said, "and they are throwing themselves out in order to free themselves."

The professor did not provide exact figures to back up his conclusion, but said the university's animal hospital has seen an uptick in Van cats that have sustained broken bones after jumping from great heights.

[@mpoppel, photo via AP]