Don’t Leave Your Cat in the Dark – Why?

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Black cat at a dark night

If you are a cat owner, you must be well aware of how cats have an amazing vision at night and in low light. Cats’ eyes shine prominently in low light and at night time in the dark. Hence cats can easily roam around at night in an outdoor environment.

However, this certainly doesn’t mean that you should be leaving your cat alone in the dark outside. This can have a lot of downsides and negative impacts on your cat. This article will discuss how leaving your cat in the dark can be extremely irresponsible and must be avoided at all costs. You must pay special attention to this aspect when taking care of a cat.

Are cats nocturnal animals?

Felines, including cats, are usually nocturnal. They like to hunt at night when other animals and humans are asleep. However, more often than not, the domesticated cats kept at home by human families learn to adapt to the routine and schedule of their humans. Hence they start sleeping at night and stay awake during the daylight. They may be unprepared to deal with the hazards in the dark at night and must not be left alone.

Cats can feel threatened at night

Although cats have good night vision, which helps them in the dark, this also has a downside. This night vision causes them to see predators and signs of danger more clearly. This may instill a feeling of fear, threat, and alarm in them.

This causes the cats to be scared for their life. Once a cat starts to feel threatened, they start to worry for their life, and they do not overcome that fear easily. Hence from being brave and confident, they can be reduced into being timid and shy. 

Cats enter into survival and predatory mode at night

Cats are predatory by nature, and they love going on hunting sprees even if they do not need hunting to survive and have abundant food available to them at their homes. However, when left outside on their own at night, cats tend to engage in fights and disputes with other stray animals and neighborhood pets.

They get into combats and may end up injuring themselves. At times these injuries can be quite harmful and life-threatening. Injuries can also be such that they cause the cat to become limp permanently. Hence it is important to prevent cats from being on their own at night.

Older cats may have impaired vision at night

Older cats have poor night and daytime vision. However, in the dark, there is the low light intensity which almost turns them blind. In the dark, they start trusting other symptoms of theirs to navigate their way. This includes hearing and intuition. At old age, these instincts of cats are also not as good. This puts them at a great amount of danger and threat from environmental factors and other wild animals.

Cats may get into accidents that can even be life-threatening

Cat in dark may not be visible to other people on the roads and out in the open environment. This can create several health hazards for these cats. This is especially true for cats with a shade of darker color.

These include a dark brown cat and a dark ginger cat. When they do not appear easily visible, they can be injured or hurt by people on the road, such as being run over by a car or motorbike. This can be very traumatizing for both the cat owner and the cat themselves, and injuries can even be fatal or permanently debilitating. Hence leaving cats alone in the dark is never a good idea.

Cats can get injured or attacked by other wild animals in the dark

In the dark, cats are also more vulnerable to attacks by wild animals, and this is because wild animals usually hunt in the dark when humans are asleep. At night, cats, especially domesticated ones, can become easy targets for wild animals.

Cats can also get stuck in bushes and trees at night, and this is in an attempt to escape from the wild animal’s attack. However, cats sometimes find it difficult to find their way out of the bushes or their hideout spot. They can go missing for days and weeks. Being stuck without being found for several days can put them at imminent risk for starvation, weakness, and death.

Some useful strategies for preventing cats from going in the dark

To prevent the scenario of a cat in dark, make sure you check that the cat is at home at night. Make it a daily routine to check whether all doors are locked or not, and all windows are sealed. Once you do this, make sure the cat’s litter box is accessible and clean, and the cat can easily use it. This would eliminate one of the causes why they may want to go out at night. Also, ensure that cats have food put out for them to not feel hungry in the middle of the night.

Parting Thoughts!

In summary, cats are extremely sensitive and caring creatures. They take note of all gestures and know-how to recognize when they are being loved and cared for and when they are being neglected. If you are a cat owner, you must take extra care of your cat to make it feel protected and loved. An important rule of thumb is never to leave your cat alone in the dark. It would be best if you took care of this. If any unforeseen circumstances may cause this to happen, you must ensure not to let it happen again. Once you lose a cat’s trust, it can become very hard and close to impossible to gain it back. Cats can be unforgiving, and it can be difficult to keep a cat as a pet once it starts to resent you.

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