Feline Night Vision: Can Cats See in the Dark?

Cats are really unique and interesting animals, and humans have been mystified by these amazing creatures for centuries. Cats have the unique ability to see well even in low amounts of light. Does this mean that cats can see in the dark?

Cats can see in the dark because their eyes are made up differently than human eyes are. Although this is very handy for cats at night, this ability does not mean that cats can see in complete darkness.

In this article, we will be explaining how cats can see in the dark. We will also be answering some other commonly asked questions about cats and what they can see. Let’s jump right into it!

can cats see in the dark at night atlanta ga

Can My Cat See In The Dark?

Yes, cats can see in the dark when there are still low levels of light present. This means that cats can see pretty good at night. This is an important evolution for cats since they do most of their hunting at dawn and dusk after the sun sets and before the sun rises.

Can Kittens See In The Dark?

Yes, kittens can also see in the dark in the same way that adult cats can. Kittens develop full eyesight at five weeks old, so it is around this time that they can start to see well in the dark.

Even though kittens can see in the dark relatively well, they may sometimes act as if they are frightened by the darkness. This is usually because the low levels of light can be disorienting for a kitten.

Can Cats See In The Dark Better Than Dogs?

Cats can technically see in the dark better than dogs can. This is because a cat’s eyes are better adapted for seeing well in low levels of light than dogs’ eyes are.

Still, dogs have a better ability at seeing in the dark than humans do. This means that dogs lie somewhere in between humans and cats when it comes to being able to see in low amounts of light.

How Do Cats See In The Dark?

how do cats see in the dark

Cats’ eyes are biologically designed to be able to see better in low levels of light than other kinds of animals. This is because a cat’s eyes have certain unique characteristics that allow their eyes to take in more light.

The first unique characteristic of a cat’s eye is their extremely large, slit pupils. These pupils widen a huge amount in the dark. This allows their eyes to take in as much light as possible in the darkness. During the day these pupils close more to prevent light from flooding into the eye.

Similarly, cats have a layer of extra tissue called a tapetum at the back of the eye. The tapetum reflects light that hits it back to the retina. This helps bring more light into the eye in low light levels as well.

Can Cats See In Total Darkness?

No, cats cannot see in total darkness. That is when there is absolutely no light present. Most cats will not experience complete darkness throughout their lives. This is because most environments that cats live in, such as people’s homes, have low levels of light even when it appears to be extremely dark to us humans.

Should You Leave A Light On For Your Cat?

Although most cats should be alright without a light on at night, it will not necessarily hurt your cat to have a light on for them at night. This is especially true if your cat seems to be afraid of the dark or has problems with their eyesight.

Are Cats Afraid Of The Dark?

Sometimes cats will be afraid of the dark, and there are several possible reasons why cats develop this fear. The first reason is that some cats may feel disoriented in the dark. This is especially common for young kittens and elderly cats.

The second cause for cats becoming afraid of the dark is that they associate it with negative experiences. For example, a cat may get into scuffles with other cats at night, or a cat may have gotten attacked by another animal in the dark.

How Can You Tell If Your Cat Is Afraid Of The Dark?

A cat that is afraid of the dark will likely show signs that they are feeling anxious. Some common signs of anxiety in cats include:

  • Yowling or crying
  • Showing anxious body language (hair standing on end, tail tucked or flicking, ears pinned back)
  • Lashing out at people or other animals in the dark

If you believe that your cat may be afraid of the dark, putting a light on for them and setting up their environment to help them feel extra safe and secure can help.

Should You Let Your Cat Roam Outdoors At Night?

Letting your cat roam outside at night is not always the best idea. Cats face many dangers outside from the possibility of attack from another animal to potentially being hit by cars.

Conclusion

Cats truly are mystical creatures, and their ability to see well at night is one thing that makes them amazing. Although they can see well at night, it is important to remember that cats cannot see well in total darkness.

For cat parents in the Atlanta, GA region, The Village Vets has 6 general veterinary practices and a 24/7 emergency vet clinic to treat your kitty. Visit our site today to find a location near you!

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About The Village Vets

The Village Vets is a network of animal hospitals based in Atlanta, GA and the surrounding area. We offer honest, excellent service to our clients in a comfortable, friendly atmosphere. To learn more about our locations and how we can better serve you and your pet, click the button below.

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About The Village Vets

The Village Vets is a network of animal hospitals based in Atlanta, GA and the surrounding area. We offer honest, excellent service to our clients in a comfortable, friendly atmosphere. To learn more about our locations and how we can better serve you and your pet, click the button below.