Do Cats See Color?
If you’re wondering if your beloved cat sees the colors of the world just like you do, then you’re like the many scientists who have researched cats’ color vision. Here are the results of various studies.
Cats’ Color Vision
Cats and humans have three types of color-sensitive cells in the retina called the “cones”, however, the number of cones differs significantly between humans and cats. Since cats have fewer of these cells, their color vision is not as rich, vibrant, and saturated as that of humans. Scientists argue that a cat’s color vision can be compared to that of a color-blind human.
A theory suggests that cats only see shades of blue and gray and other colors like pink and red are perceived as green while purple appears like blue in the eyes of the cat. Other researchers suggest that cats also see shades of yellow, similar to members of the dog family.
Other Properties of Cats’ Vision
To compensate for their lack of range in the color vision department, cats have stronger motion and night vision, both qualities they need when hunting prey. They also have a wider visual field of 200 degrees as opposed to the human’s 180 degrees. In terms of visual acuity, cats are nearsighted. Images from more than 20 feet away will appear blurry in their eyes.
Learning this information about how your cats see the colors of the world can help you provide them with more stimulating toys and games that they will enjoy. Colorful toys are not as interesting to them as moving toys that engage their vision and their instincts. Furthermore, it can help you protect them and other creatures when you understand that their bodies are built for hunting and capturing anything that moves especially in low light environments.
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