If you’ve ever owned a cat, chances are you’ve seen their fascination with windows first hand. Many cats will sit in a window for hours at a time, even if the window is closed. Some stare at the birds and insects outside, but other cats seem to enjoy looking out a nearby window even if there isn’t much to look at. While cats seem perfectly happy with this habit, it can be a bit baffling for their owners. After all, most people don’t spend hours looking out windows day after day, so why do cats like windows?
Cats like windows because they stimulate their interests. Compared to a room only with walls, cats use windows for sunning themselves for added warmth and to explore nature. Cats enjoy looking at interesting patterns in the light, to enjoy the breeze, to smell plants, and to observe other animals or bugs that are outside. Different cats might have various reasons for liking windows.
Of course, you might be worried about some other things if you’re worried about your cat hanging out in the window. Let’s address some other cat owner concerns to make sure you’re getting the answers you need.
Do Cats Need A Window?
Technically, no. Your cat doesn’t need a window to be happy and fulfilled as long as you have plenty of other enrichment sources in their home to help them stay entertained. It’s alright if you live in a basement apartment and don’t have access to a good window for your cat.
However, you’ll probably want to play with your cat for a little while every day and have more cat furniture and toys than other cat owners. You may also want to consider keeping multiple cats. That way, there will always be a little more stimulation to make up for not having a window.
Depending on your cat’s temperament, you may also want to consider training your cat to accept a harness and go on a walk. Cats’ brains are still designed to see the outside and to see and interact with birds and insects, even though many domesticated cats don’t hunt anymore.
Giving your cat some outside time gives them a break from your home and stimulates their natural instincts and keeps them entertained and healthy.
Why Does My Cat Sit In The Window And Meow?
If your cat was ever an outdoor cat or an indoor-outdoor cat, they might be asking to go outside. After all, there are plenty of stimulating and fun things for your cat, and they might even see a bird or a mouse they’d like to hunt down.
Some cats will also meow or yowl to define their territory. Some will also make a strange kind of chittering sound if they see something they don’t like in ‘their’ yard. That kind of territorial action might be directed at another cat in your yard, a dog, a raccoon, or almost any wildlife they can see.
Even if your cats have never been in your yard themselves, they probably still feel like it’s theirs since they can see it and interact with it through your window.
Some cats also like to talk out the window. They might be trying to get your attention to see something cool, or just seeing if anything will respond when they start talking.
One thing you should watch out for is a long yowling meow from female cats. If your cat isn’t fixed, she might use that kind of call to try and attract any tomcats in the area. And if she succeeds, chances are a window screen isn’t going to be enough to keep male cats out.
If your cat isn’t fixed and starts making these calls, wait the heat out and then take them to the vet. Getting your cat fixed is the easiest way to stop those yowling calls and to minimize the chances of a male cat break-in or an unwanted pregnancy in your feline companion.
Why Do Cats Like Window Blinds?
Cats like window blinds for much the same reason they like their toys. They are fun to interact with, catch the light in odd an interesting way, and can be fun to bite and bat at.
Of course, not all cats like blinds, and not all cats like blinds all the time. But don’t be surprised if your feline friend occasionally damages your blinds playing with (or climbing) them.
Why Do Cats Look Out the Window At Night?
Cats look out the windows at night for much the same reasons that they do in the daytime. After all, their eyes can see a lot more nighttime detail than we can, so the window is probably just as interesting in the dark as in daylight.
It’s also when your cats are most likely to need to entertain themselves. Unless you also have a primarily nocturnal schedule, your cat probably has several hours when they are awake, and you aren’t. Looking out the window can be an essential source of stimulation during those hours.
Do Cats Ever Get Bored?
Absolutely. Cats can certainly get bored. Like people, cats tend to either act out when they are bored or settle down for a lazy lounge and possibly a nap.
That’s why it’s so important to make sure your cats have plenty of enrichments like toys, cat furniture, and yes, even windows.
Bored cats are more likely o be destructive, clawing furniture and knocking items off your shelves. They’re also more likely to become lazy and start gaining weight, which can have serious consequences.
Young cats are more likely to get bored than older cats, so they need more regular stimulation.
Fortunately, it should be relatively easy to help your cat escape their boredom. If you don’t have time to play with them more, consider getting battery-powered toys or a window perch to provide additional entertainment.
Some small dog treat puzzles can also be an excellent way to help stimulate your cat’s mind, keeping them entertained and active.
You should also make sure they have a variety of different stimuli. Furniture they can climb, something they can scratch, and a toy your cat can chase will all address different needs and help keep them from getting bored.
Is It Cruel To Keep An Indoor Cat?
Not at all. Indoor cats live longer, healthier, and happier lives than feral outdoor cats. Many indoor cats live a full decade longer than outdoor cats. They also enjoy better food, rare hunger, and comfier shelters in the meantime.
While your cat might benefit from some supervised time outside on walks or a chicken-wire enclosed cattio they can enjoy in good weather, they can have a wonderful life indoors, even if you never take them outside.
This lifestyle might not be what cats were designed to live, but they live longer because of it. As long as you’re seeing to your cat’s needs, and make sure you pay attention to signs of distress or illness, your cat will live a good life indoors.
How Much Attention Do Cats Need?
Different cats need different levels of attention. Some are content with as little as twenty minutes of direct attention, between petting and play, in a day. Others will demand an hour or more of your time thanks to their close bond and dependence on your appreciation.
Instead of thinking about how much time your cat needs, consider first how much time your cat asks for, and how much time you can give them. Try and make sure they get at least a little of your devoted attention every day, whether it’s playtime, grooming, or just cuddling on your lap while you read or watch TV.
How Do I Know My Cat is Happy?
This question is incredibly important for most cat owners, so don’t feel bad for asking. The truth is there is no hard and fast rule. But, look for bright eyes and whether your cat pays attention to you. Both are signs of a happy cat. A cat that often plays with toys or follows you from room to room is probably pleased.
Lastly, forward ear position and an upright tail are both signs of a happy cat. And if you’re lucky enough that your cat shows you their belly, you know that they trust you, love you, and want some attention right now, please!