Does Seeing Birds Make Cats Happy or Anxious?

Bird-watching is an engaging and stimulating activity for most cats.
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If you're a cat lover, then you've probably noticed just how much cats love looking out windows and staring at all the birds chirping in the trees. When a kitty watches birds, he may be thinking as a predator. He just really wants to catch the little things!


In general, cats feel happy and interested when they look at birds. Our fluffy friends often view the chirping creatures as easy prey. When you notice a cat looking intently at birds outside of the window, he probably has located one that he really, really wants to go after -- except for the little inconvenience that he's indoors and might not be able to easily go outside. This behavior is natural and instinctual in cats.


You may observe that when watching birds, cats tend to make a bizarre sound that is similar to "chattering." The subtle sound may be one of anxiety -- your cat could be upset that he cannot access the bird. In this type of scenario, bird-watching can indeed trigger anxious feelings in cats. Also, in the wild, when a cat captures a bird, he may kill it by biting its neck. The rattling sound could be a way for a feline to emulate that victorious moment -- all from the cozy confines of your home.

Full Attention

When a cat is fixated on birds, he may seem a little tense with razor-sharp attention and fascination. If you notice that your little one's body seems a little tense and tight while bird-watching, it probably isn't because what is going on is making him upset, but because he's so riveted by what he's seeing. Cats also act similarly interested while watching squirrels from afar. Felines tend to love observing anything in rapid motion.


Watching birds can be an enjoyable, stimulating and interactive pastime for felines. If you want to encourage this activity in your precious pet, consider placing a bird feeder directly outside of your fluffball's favorite comfortable window perch. That way, your cat will be able to stare out at all of the neighborhood birds to his heart's content. If you don't have a big window for your cat, consider purchasing a wildlife DVD or video that features birds -- up close and personal.

Always check with your veterinarian before changing your pet’s diet, medication, or physical activity routines. This information is not a substitute for a vet’s opinion.

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