Cats have a fantastic head for heights unlike most people. The human is a ground dwelling animal 😉 Cats are betwixt the ground and the trees. Some wild cats are tree dwelling and some ground dwelling but all the wild cat species and, of course, our humble domesticated cats like a bit of vertical movement – upwards. It comes naturally and the cat has no fear of falling or of heights. Are those cats that are stuck up a tree, fearful of heights? I don’t believe so.
Rudolph says this about his photo:
“After years suddenly thought of photographing cat Matahari from the ground as she sat on her normal favourite place, 5th floor gallery ledge. I thought these photos could prove the fact that cats love sitting in high places which to us humans would seem suicidal. She sits on this ledge for at least an hour a day as also her kitten Matata who mimics her, now a tomcat .A slight slip from this ledge means a fall 5 floors below to the ground. These photos clearly indicates the height and the narrowness of the gallery ledge.”
Well, you said it all. Cats have no fear when perched precariously on a narrow ledge five floors up. Although I don’t think it makes any difference, there is a little canopy about five feet below Matahari. Has she ever jumped onto that?
Sometimes, the cat’s confidence, goes wrong. Some cats do fall. Most of the falling cats escape with minor injuries because of their self-righting mechanism and their ability to fan out their body like a flying squirrel when falling, which slows the speed of descent. They land on their feet. Perhaps they damage their chin and a leg or get a bruised chest. That’s about the sum total of their injuries, a lot of the time.
Cats falling from great heights suffer less injury than cats from lower heights because their body-righting and fanned out profile has slowed the fall significantly when falling farther.
Update from Rudolph..
Today I was lucky to photograph the elusive tomcat “Matata” on the window-ledge an exact “Copycat posture” of his dam “Matahari” taken a few days ago. Notice the similarities and they take turns in sitting on this window ledge, absolutely dangerous cat stunts. Tomcat matata is a very nervous cat, afraid of strangers and noises and hence difficult to photograph compared to Matahari. Matata has a strange mannerism of keeping his right leg out of the window, the same clearly visible in the second photo.
This is his normal posture whenever he sits on the window-sill ledge. In comparison his dam Matahari literally goes to sleep on the ledge which scares us, in case she falls off in her sleep. The term copycats originated from cats and all cat owners know the reasons for the same.