Are Cats Color Blind?

by Michael
(London, UK)

Photo by Tscherno (Flickr)

Photo by Tscherno (Flickr)

The answer is no but their ability to see colour is limited. The cat's retina is made up of two types of light sensitive cells; rods and cones. The rods enable the cat to see black, white and shades of grey.

The cones provide the color vision. There are many rods and few cones. The cat can see well in poor light but color vision is limited.

In fact the cat has a "reduced ability to see fine detail and a variety of colours"1. The cones that are in the retina react to light waves within the green and blue regions of the spectrum. The retina contains very few cones that are sensitive to the longer light waves such as red.

For this reason people say that the cat has "dichromatic vision" - vision in which only two of the three primary colors are perceived. The three primary colors are; blue, green and red1.

The cat's eyes are adapted for crepuscular (dawn and dusk) hunting. The cats eyes are specialized to see movement.

References:

1. The Cat, Its Behavior, Nutrition & Health by Linda P Case.

2. Original photo o Flickr

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Are Cats Color Blind? to Cat Health Problems

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Are Cats Color Blind?

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Nov 30, 2011 Primary colours
by: Anonymous

There are two sets of primary colours. One set is blue yellow red as mentioned, which is used primarily in art ie dyes, pigments (subtractive combination). The other set Is blue green red, used to refer to the primary colour of lights ie CRT displays (additive combination)


Oct 09, 2011 Primary colors
by: Anonymous

Your site says that the primary colors are blue, green, and red. Primary colors are colors that cannot be obtained by mixing two colors. Green can be obtained by mixing yellow and blue. The primary colors are blue, yellow, and red.


Sep 27, 2010 tit
by: Anonymous

I want to thank all the visitors to this site who contribute to our understanding of the domestic cat and to their proper care. Without these contributions this site would not be what it is....Michael


This entry was posted in Cat Anatomy and tagged , , by Michael Broad. Bookmark the permalink.

About Michael Broad

Michael is retired! He retired at age 57 and at Aug 2018 is approaching 70. He worked in many jobs. The last job he did was as a solicitor practicing general law. He loves animals and is passionate about animal welfare. He also loves photography and nature. He hates animal abuse. He has owned and managed this site since 2007. There are around 13k pages so please use the custom search facility!

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Are Cats Color Blind? — 3 Comments

  1. Pingback: Cat Eye Sensitive to Light : Improve Eyesight Without Glasses

  2. Pingback: Cat Eye Color | Pictures of Cats

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