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Can cats see in the dark like night vision goggles?

by Milton Braganza 2 months ago in Science
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Explore the night vision of the cat.

It is well known that the cat is known for its keen senses - especially its vision. But just how good are its eyesight? Can they see well in the dark? Is it similar to night vision goggles? Let's explore the cat's night vision in this issue.

Can cats see clearly in the dark?

Cats can see better in the dark than we humans can. In dimly lit environments or dimly lit places, cats can see more clearly than we can. This is because cats have more receptors in their eyes than we do. These receptors are called optic rods, and they are sensitive to light and can help them see anywhere from six to eight times better than we can!

Their pupils are more capable of dilation than ours, which helps bring in more light. However, cats do not see very well in the absolute absence of light. Cats must have at least a very small light source to see in the dark. So even though cats can see well in the dark, they are not nocturnal, and cats prefer to be active at dusk and dawn.

How is a cat's night vision different from that of a human?

The difference between a cat's vision and a human's vision is in the retinal area of the eye. In the retina, there will be light-sensitive cells, and there are two different types of these cells, called rod cells and cone cells. The role of the cone cells is to help see during the day and detect shades of various colors. On the other hand, the optic rods help with night vision and peripheral vision.

Cats have many rod receptors, but not as many cone receptors. This combination explains why cats can see well at night, but cannot detect colors well. For humans, the opposite is true. We are better at seeing different colors, but not so good at seeing at night.

Another factor that makes a cat's night vision different from that of humans is its fuzzy layer - or thin reflective layer located at the back of the eye. When they are in a dark environment, this layer bounces back and amplifies light. This explains why cats' and dogs' eyes may glow in the dark.

Cats are color blind too

While cats may have excellent night vision, their eyesight is not perfect. Cats are red/green blind.

Unlike humans, who have three different types of color receptors called optic cones, cats have only two different types of optic cones and far fewer of them. This means that shades of red and green are gray to them. Although they may not be able to see certain colors, cats are not completely colorblind as some people believe.

They can see color, even if it is not as vivid and bright as human vision. This refutes the myth that cats see black and white. Seeing black and white is known as monochromatic and is very rare. Cats see colors in a slightly different way than we do; their color blindness is similar to that of humans, and some specific colors (red and green) are more difficult to process. However, cats are much better at seeing shades of blue and yellow than red and green. They also rely heavily on the brightness of colors when viewing the world.

Therefore, you may want to consider getting your cat a yellow pet toy or a blue toy, as both will be more appealing and easier for your cat to see.

What are the limitations and advantages of a cat's eyesight?

Being able to see well in the dark also comes at a cost for cats. They cannot distinguish details in their surroundings as well as humans can. They also have a much shorter range of vision when it comes to distance. Humans can see details from 30-60 meters away, in contrast, cats can only see about 10 meters, which is a relatively short distance.

This is because cats lack the muscles needed to be able to change the shape of their eyes. For example, if you have ever held a cat toy close to a cat's face, you may have noticed that it starts to sniff it. This behavior is not only their way of detecting the smell of an object but also of determining what the object is because it is difficult for them to see it. At close range, it is difficult for a cat to focus its eyes on an object, so if you place the toy very close, the cat will use its sensitive whiskers to detect it.

Although cats have a much fuzzier field of view, they have a wider field of view of 200 degrees (humans have a field of view of 180 degrees), which provides better peripheral vision.

So now you know the answer to whether cats can see well in the dark! Although cats' night vision is not as powerful as most people would expect, their eyes are still very impressive, which is part of what makes them successful hunters.


About the author

Milton Braganza

Science without borders, but scientists have the motherland。

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