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Can cats watch TV and is there any benefit for them?

Kitten trying to get at a goldfish

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  1. Laura

    You probably want to make sure they aren’t watching it a lot though. That can’t be good for their eyes, just like how it isn’t good for our eyes either, especially sitting up close.

  2. Kathryn Smith

    not sure I’d opt to pay for it unless cat was being boarded significant period of time – but most of my cats enjoyed my aquarium, the bird feeders outside ‘their’ window, and on occasion the TV – but there was usually enough sight/sound to keep them occupied w/o the boobtoob. They were 100% indoor cats due to where we live.

  3. BJ Wilson

    Our 8yo Doll faced Persian (f) rests in a wave scratcher/lounger in front of our 60″ DLP TV in our family room listening to the SonicTap (DirecTV) music channels New Age (Ch 856) or the Malt Shop Oldies (Ch 802) for hours just watching the floating song info bubble move around the screen. Also when we gather together to watch Too Cute (Kittens / Cats) on the Animal Planet (Ch 282), there will usually be one or more of the fur baby family planted in front of the TV watching and listening to the cats or feathered friends. For kitties that get bored or need additional stimulation and company, the TV can offer some level of comfort.

  4. Regina

    I thought I had enough “entertainment” for my cats, with all of their window seats to the happenings outside. But, I was watching a “Nature” show on crows and how intelligent they are. As soon as the program started playing the cawing of the crows, my one cat’s ears perked up, he turned toward the television, and was very interested! He did move closer to the TV, but not too close. It was fascinating to me that he just was so interested in the show. As soon as the program ended, he went back to ignoring the TV.
    I actually have watched it several times, just for his enjoyment!

    1. BJ Wilson

      Regina,
      Interesting to hear other human caregivers experiences. Our wave scratcher/lounger is 18-24″ from the TV. If the Persian is stimulated enough, she will chase the floating bubble for the music channels and play ‘patty cake’ with it. We about fell over laughing the first time she did it. ;]’ It was entertaining for us as well.
      BJ

  5. Sage

    My cats sit on my desk and sometimes watch the mouse cursor on my computer screen if it catches their attention.

    Occasionally I google something like “cats jumping or cats running” and open one of the many videos with lots of close up action shots of cats in motion. Enlarged to full screen, they will watch for a VERY SHORT time but tire of it pretty quickly. I would not pay extra for this because if forced to face a TV or computer monitor for an extended time, I think it would become extremely stressful – especially if the sound were turned up.

    A simple test would be to put the cat in view of the TV at home and see if there is any interest, and more importantly for how long. Better for the cat if it he/she move away from the screen at will.

  6. Angela

    Simon watched a Nature program for over a 1/2 hour and he didn’t budge until a commercial came on…then he yawned, stretched, turned over, and went to sleep.

  7. Carol

    Not sure I’d pay for TV either, but my cats do react to doorbells and the like on TV. They turn and look at the door! My late Rambo, especially. And if he was in another room and heard screaming on TV – he’d come and look at me as if to ask, “Are you ok?” How sweet is that?!

  8. carol anne

    I can’t remember which politician it was now (and I’m so sorry I can’t) but whenever said politician was on TV speaking my Cupcake Kitty would sit in front of the TV and listen. It was the oddest thing. I guess she liked the sound of his voice or how he looked or something.

  9. Ellie

    Kitty day care!? Well, I have never sent any of my cats to day care but I have to admit that during the cold winter season I have a bunch of bored kitty cats staring at me like I took away the nice warm hunting weather and why don’t I bring it back!

    We have several bird feeders stationed quite close to a couple of windows. I don’t have anything interesting for them to watch on TV but they are in love with the “kitty TV” available at the window. I have pictures of several cats at a time sitting by the window and on the surrounding furniture watching those birds!

    I have a few full time indoor cats plus just as many indoor/outdoor former feral cats. The indoor population doubles during the winter so we really need some entertainment. Thankfully, those birds are more than willing to provide endless hours of entertainment safely on the other side of the glass.

  10. Linda Lucas

    I have the book “Buyer Beware” and it scares the Beejesus out of me. I have 2 cats that will be 2 years old in May and wanted to give them a good start in life and forever, so I bought ‘high’ end foods and the ‘hockey puck’ looking ‘raw’ foods from the freezer section of the pet store. They ate them for awhile, then turned their little noses up at that food, so I got ‘high’ end canned foods. My boy cat has already had a urinary issue, so I stopped giving them any dry food. Now, since getting THE book, I’m afraid to feed them canned food. I got a meat grinder and bought human grade meats, ground it up, and they won’t eat it. If anyone has any trick to get them to eat my homemade foods, PLEASE let me know. I want them to be healthy and live a long time.

    1. Ellie

      Many cats will turn up their noses to a new type of feeding. It may be because their digestive systems are just not accustomed to the new foods. Did you feed the meat raw? A cat that has only eaten dry and canned foods may not be ready to go right to raw. Sometimes lightly cooking the food stimulates their senses because the scent of the food fills the air. If you know that they like a particular ingredient you can mix that ingredient in with your food to get them more interested.
      When feeding real food you can’t leave the food in the dish like you did the dry or canned food. Set up a regular feeding schedule and feed portions that they can consume all at once so the meat does not sit around. Wash the dishes after every meal. Cats have such sensitive noses that they many times will not eat out of a dirty dish.
      Hopefully you have a few good sources of recipes for making nutritious meals for cats. I feed raw and my cats love it but as I said some cats need a transition time to to get accustomed to eating raw. If one recipe does not go over well then try another. Some people try to make it very complicated but it should not be.

  11. babyninja

    GREAT POST!!! I have the television on in the morning. I sometimes put on Big Cat Diary or Meerkat Manor. Meerkat Manor is their favorite. They have no interest in the commercials though. I believe they are interested in other cats, and others animals. Thanks for the post!!

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