do cats like red light

They are similar to people with red-green color blindness—red hues likely appear as the color green to your cat. If you are referring to red laser pointers, cats love chasing the light. The problem is the cat can never “catch” the light and that can frustrate their hunting instinct.

Cons to Laser Pointers for Dogs

After a few minutes, the majority of cats are likely to get tired of chasing the laser pointer. But for your dog, it triggers something deeper.

“The lack of closure in laser-beam chasing could be messing with your dog’s head,” according to Dr. Nicholas Dodman, animal behavior expert and professor at Tufts University’s Cummings School of Veterinary Medicine. Dodman explains that your dog instinctively chases laser beams simply because they move. Movement triggers a dog’s innate prey drive, which explains why smaller prey animals often freeze in their tracks. Dogs have a highly-developed ability to detect motion with their eyes.

According to Dr. Dodman, dogs’ predatory systems are stimulated by the constant movement of a laser dot, making it impossible for them to resist chasing it. “They can’t help themselves. They are obliged to chase it,” he says.

Applied Animal Behaviorist and Certified Dog Trainer, Karen B. London Ph.D concurs. “A lot of dogs become obsessive about the light from laser pointers, and there are many cases of dogs who were diagnosed with obsessive-compulsive disorder after (and perhaps partly as a result of) this activity. Dogs become preoccupied with the light, then transfer that interest to similar stimuli, sometimes developing a behavior problem in which they chase lights and shadows. It may look fun and entertaining to people, but it’s usually anything but fun for dogs.” She also says that working dogs like bomb-sniffing dogs require a “win” to stay happy in their jobs. Essentially, they thrive on closure, and laser pointers never provide any which is frustrating for your dog.

Another benefit is mental stimulation.

Many cats stay home alone most of the day, without a lot of stimulation or activity. Cat laser pointers can provide key stimulation and keep them from becoming overly bored.

The laser beam imitates swiftly moving prey by bouncing off the wall, the floor, and even your cat. Your cat may have a lot of fun with it, but your dog may not have as much fun.

Even though they can be entertaining, there’s a fine line between providing your cat with healthy exercise and taunting them. Are laser pointers good or bad for cats?

A laser pointer and an active kitty are a favorite pastime for cat owners. Watching them jump, startle, and chase after a teeny red light never gets old. You would think they would eventually catch on to the trick, so why do cats like lasers anyway?

It’s possible that you’ve heard cats shouldn’t use laser pointers. It turns out that cats and kittens can benefit from laser pointers as a good source of mental stimulation and exercise.

Because they are innate predators with a strong prey drive, part of what makes a cat a cat is the instinct to seize a fast-moving red dot. With the same fervor they employ to capture rodents, birds, and insects, cats chase lasers.

Make sure the laser is being used for your cat’s benefit rather than to tease, worry, or annoy them.


What color light is best for cats?

Because dogs and cats do not see colors on the red end of the human visible spectrum, a red light creates a darker space for pets at night, allowing them to sleep normally in the shelter.

Why are cats obsessed with the red light?

“Cats like lasers because they are predators and like to chase or hunt anything that moves fast around them,” Fanucchi said. A zipping red light that quickly switches directions might have a similar motion to a mouse or other critter. The light sort of mimics an animal scurrying around to escape its prey.

Are red laser lights bad for cats?

If you use a laser pointer while playing with your cat, follow these safety precautions: Use a low-wattage light, with a maximum power output of 5 milliwatts. Never shine the light directly into your cat’s eyes. Store the laser toy in a secure spot that your cat can’t reach.

Do cats like the red light game?

“Cats feel their happiest and most confident when they feel like predators,” Bell explains. So, yes, they can love the thrill of hunting the laser pointer light. But, as we all know, your cat can never actually capture the red dot and fun could quickly become frustration.