Why do cats face the wall?
Do you ever find yourself confused as to why your cat does some of the odd things that it does? Cat’s behaviour often makes us wonder what can possibly be going on inside their cute furry heads. “Why do cats face the wall” is a common question a lot of you may have.
I’m sure all of you cat owners can picture the scene where you are reading a book or going about your chores and suddenly notice your cat sitting in the corner of the room staring directly at the wall for what seems like no apparent reason at all.
So what possible reason could there for this mysterious act?
Shadows and reflections
Often the reason your cat is staring at the wall can be something as simple as them seeing a shadow from a moving tree outside the window being cast onto the wall. The shadow of a bird flying past can spike the attention of your cat as they may catch this quick flicker from the corner of its eye.
Some cats will respond in a more alert manner than others at shadows moving on walls. Some will be sent into hunting/chasing mode for half an hour, whereas others will simply not be too bothered.
Sometimes if you’re cooking or using your smart phone, the reflective surface can catch the light from your lamp and reflect a beam onto the wall. Some cats just find this irresistible and will go crazy for it, or sit and stare at the same spot on the wall as if waiting for the shadow or reflection to eventually come back.
A cat can be also known to often return to the same wall because they remember that they have previously seen shadows there before. If you shine a light from a knife onto the wall whilst you are cooking, then you may find that when you cook in the future that your cat will sit and stare at the same place you cast that reflective beam, as if associating you cooking with that reflection on the wall.
On top of this, cat’s have very good eyesight at close range and can even see light wavelengths that humans can’t. So even if we can’t see a shadow or light beam on the wall, it is possible that a cat can.
If your cat is sitting in the corner especially when facing the wall, then this possibly maybe have something to do with the acoustics of sound.
If you’ve ever had music playing out of speakers in a room and then go to sit in a corner, you may notice that the sound is very different from other parts of the room. You may experience a more bass heavy and resonant sound.
As cats have a very acute sense of hearing, they may be finding that they can hear things from the corner of the room that interest them, these may be things that we cannot pick up with our own ears. The sounds bouncing off of the surfaces may enhance their already brilliant sense of hearing and cause cats to face the wall in a corner.
All of the hard surfaces joining together in the corner of the room may cause the cat to act as if it is ‘concentrating’ on something that may just be a sound that we can not hear.
We may often ask ourselves the question “Can my cat see ghosts in the room?” when we see them just looking a part of the wall for no apparent reason.
Although nobody can say for sure whether they are seeing “ghosts” or not, it is just far more likely that their enhanced hearing and vision is picking up noises and reflections outside of what we can perceive. Whether those things have any paranormal nature or not is definitely something that we don’t have the ability to answer in this article!
You may spot your cat looking at a picture behind you on the wall, you turn around and don’t see anything there that could grab your cat’s attention. The answer could be something as simple your cat seeing a spider run into the crack between the picture frame and the wall. Even though the spider may not be visible now, your cat may well be fascinated by that spot on the wall for a while!
Like humans, cats will also grieve for the loss of their friends. One of the the tell-tale signs that your cat is grieving can be that they may sit and press their head up against a wall.
This type of behaviour is different to the usual way a cat may stare at a wall as their head will usually be touching the wall and facing slightly downwards. So don’t be surprised if you notice your cat doing this after they have lost a friend.
Illness or pain
If you spot your cat behaving in “grieving” manner without having a reason to grieve, then this can be a sign that your cat is in pain or has some sort of condition like an upset stomach or something worse. It would be advised that you take your cat to see the vet in a situation such as this so that you can find out if they are suffering from something that needs urgent attention.
New pet or baby
You may find your cat wants to suddenly sit in corners alone after a new addition to the family has be introduced to the household. In some case a cat may not know how to handle this big change to their life.
They may feel scared, confused or neglected. This may be a sign of them wanting to hide away. So remember to try to make time for your cat to reassure them that everything is okay by stroking, cuddling and playing with them.
For some cats, moving house can just be something that seems exciting to them. They may love mooching around and finding all of the nooks and crannies they can hide and play in. They may especially love the boxes!
For other cats however, the act of moving house may be more stressful and scary than anything else, so they may start hiding in corners. Don’t worry though, as your cat will eventually adjust to the new surroundings even if they are creatures of routine.
A cat’s natural behaviour
Remember that cats are naturally curios and alert animals! The answer to “Why do cats face the wall?” and a lot of other things that they do may be down to their instincts. Although it make look mysterious to us, they do not see the world the same way as we do. We just have to accept that cats will be cats and we can never fully understand them!