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Color makes the world beautiful. When you glance at a forest, you appreciate the green vegetation cover on it.
Rainbows look adorable in their mix of bright hues. If you are a cat owner, you must have wondered if your cat sees the world as you do.
Can she tell that her water bowl is silver while her Halloween costume is yellow?
How about her wide range of brightly-colored toys? Does she know which one is pink and which one is purple?
When she looks outside the window, can she tell the different colors apart?
There are many theories surrounding what cats can see when they open their eyes.
Some people claim that these sweet creatures only see blues and grays. Others say that they can see some color but not as clearly as we do.
The general consensus is that our feline friends do not live in a black and white world as earlier claimed.
They can see some color. So, can your kitty see pink? We investigate…
What Defines Color?
According to Livescience, color is a determinant of photoreceptors in the eyes’ retina.
This rings true for all living creatures. When you look at a mango fruit, light reflects on it.
The light rays are converted into electrical signals by photoreceptors where they will be processed and translated into the yellow or orange image you see.
Ideally, there are two types of photoreceptors in the eye: cones and rods. The former is responsible for color perceptions and day vision.
Conversely, rods are set apart for the night and peripheral vision. These are responsible for detecting gray shades and brightness.
Human beings have more cones (20 times more) than rods. That means we can see color very well and see the world better during the day than at night. It also explains why we have problems seeing color at night.
Cats, on the other hand, have an extremely high concentration of cones compared to rods.
Experts put this figure at 6-8 times more rod cells than cones cells.
Now you know why your kitty is more active at night than during the day. She naturally has good night vision.
Additionally, cats have a wider range of vision – 2000 compared to our 1800 view.
This wide peripheral vision makes them great hunting prowesses that we know them to be.
Can Cats See Pink?
With a low concentration of rods, cats don’t see color very well. When compared to human beings, felines have 10 times fewer cones.
What this means is that they appreciate color way less than we do.
When your kitty looks at a colorful toy ball, she can tell that it is bright and colorful but she cannot perceive the different colors on it.
If it is a red ball, her retina may not tell her the actual color.
When it comes to cones, there are three types to consider: red, blue, and green.
Cats are believed to be able to detect blue hues more than other colors. They can also see yellow-green hues. This means anything in the shade of gray, yellow, and blue is perceived by your kitty.
On the other hand, red, orange, and pink blues are not the easiest for a cat to perceive.
At this point, you must wonder how your cat is able to follow a red laser pointer.
The reason is simple: she is an expert at detecting rapid movements more than you do.
So, as she moves after the laser, she is motivated by its movement rather than its color.
To cats, reds and pinks appear more like green. Purple may look like a shade of blue.
What Does It Mean For Your Kitty?
While brightly-colored toys are great and all, they don’t motivate your kitty like they do young kids.
The best toy for your beloved furry friend is one that awakens her predatory instincts.
This is why laser pointer toys are loved by cats everywhere. If you have to get a colorful toy, get one in the blue, yellow, gray, or green shades.
Another thing to note is that cats are nearsighted. This means they cannot perceive objects from afar as we do.
Thankfully, they make up for this with their impeccable night vision.
With a high number of rods in their retinas, they excel in the dark. Your kitty will only need about 1’6th of the amount of light you need to see well in the dark.
So, yes they may not be able to see pink so well but they see exceptionally well at night.
That’s why they hunt better when the sun goes down. They can detect movement better than their prey giving them an advantage over them.
Want to buy your kitty a pink outfit and wondering if she will appreciate it?
How about you get her a yellow, green, or blue one instead? She can interpret these colors better than pink.
Better still, focus on getting her something that moves. She will thoroughly enjoy playing with it more than any colorful gift.
Hi! I am Eleanor Price. I started this website after my cat, Louie, almost died from a case of botulism (a type of food poisoning often caused by bacteria that grow on food items). Turned out that my cat’s diet was the problem. I have made it my duty to provide the best information and recommendations about everything cat lovers need to know about their felines’ health and wellbeing. My goal is to find the most informative content on anything feline-related and share it with fellow hardworking kitty lovers.