Can My Cat Tell Time?

How does she always know it’s breakfast time? ⏰

can cats tell time

Have you ever wondered how your cat always knows exactly when to start meowing like crazyyyyyy for food RIGHT. ON. TIME. EVERY. SINGLE. TIME?

Or how she knows to wake you up as soon as the sun starts rising?

Like jeez, it’s SUNDAY. Doesn’t she know it’s a morning to sleep in?

All these things beg the question: Can cats tell time?

And as a matter of fact, they can.

“Yes, cats can tell time,” Dr. Catherine Lenox, a veterinarian and regulatory veterinary manager at Royal Canin, told The Dodo.

“Cats are most active at dawn and dusk,” Dr. Lenox said. “They respond to how much light is present and become more active when the sun starts to rise.”

After all, a cat in the wild needs to know what time it is — especially since the food they eat tends to be awake at certain times of the day!

According to Dr. Lenox, your own routines can reinforce this, helping them associate the amount of light outside with the time they normally get breakfast.

Which also plays a role in why she tries to drag you out of bed so rudely on the weekends. (If you’re super desperate, though, you can try an automatic feeder.)

“On your day off, your cat will remember when he or she normally gets breakfast and may wake you up, even when you want to sleep in,” Dr. Lenox said. “Then your cat will probably go back to sleep until it starts to get dark, even though you stay awake!”

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