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Why Does My Cat Look Out the Window All Day? 5 Reasons & Care Tips

Written by: Ashley Bates

Last Updated on February 6, 2024 by Catster Editorial Team

ginger cat looking at the window

Why Does My Cat Look Out the Window All Day? 5 Reasons & Care Tips

Does your cat love their window seat? Many cats spend most of their days hanging out by a window to see what’s happening. You might not understand the allure, but you have a fluffy predator on your hands, and it’s time to figure out why they do this.

You might notice your cats congregating to check out the flock of birds feasting in the early morning or curled up enjoying the sunshine. Your cat loves windows for multiple reasons, which are valid and understandable. But let’s talk specifics.

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The 5 Reasons Cats Look Out the Window

There’s no secret to this. Your cats look out windows for the same reasons you might think—free entertainment and cozy napping.

1. Warmth

With the beautiful way the warm sunshine comes pouring in the window, it’s no surprise cats love basking in these rays. Your cat will love getting warm and cozy in their favorite window sitting spot.

It’s their very own nature-made heating blanket. If you have a cat that gravitates towards warm, snuggly areas, it’s probably a guarantee that they are using the window to get toasty. And it’s quite a view as well.

Tortoiseshell cat looking out of the window
Image Credit: Michaela Filipcikova, Unsplash

2. Reflection

Just who is that cat on the other side of the window? Your cat might not be able to quite figure it out.

Sometimes cats get really jazzed up to see their own reflection. The curiosity factor takes over, being uncertain as to what is an elusive cat they can see but not touch. If you notice your cat curiously moving around the window, trying to get something that seems quite elusive, it could just be themselves.

3. Prey-Gazing

Birds, squirrels, and chipmunks, oh my! Your cat has an entire buffet to stare at when they look out the window. It doesn’t matter where you live; they can see flying insects and other wildlife flying around.

You might think it is adorable that they’re watching the squirrel outside. After all, you probably think they want to make friends. The reality is your cat is a natural predator, no matter how incapable they might actually be when it comes to hunting.

Some cats might even chatter and make other vocalizations when noticing these critters. Some cats have a higher prey drive than others. The more docile cats might just enjoy the view without getting too overly invested in what they see.

Other cats show extreme interest and borderline obsession.

Gray cat looking out the window
Image Credit: chen, Unsplash

4. Entertainment

It doesn’t matter what your cat is looking at out of your window; all of the sites are entertaining for them.

It’s an entirely separate world they wish they could explore, much like us watching a safari documentary or other part of nature that we don’t get to experience in our environment.

5. Longing

One thing we feel is all too overlooked when it comes to our domesticated cats is their instinctual needs. Some cats have a much stronger desire to be outdoors, and sometimes, looking outdoors can be a natural desire because, keep in mind, being outdoors is as instinctual to your cat as anything.

Cat looking out the window
Image Credit: Natali9701, Shutterstock

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How to Enhance Your Cat’s Window Time

No matter the reason your cat prefers to look outside, you should encourage them to get this type of stimulation.

Your cat getting fresh air is not the worst idea in the world. After all, these natural creatures enjoy their original environment just like we enjoy a good hike in the woods.

If you live in an area where you can’t allow your cat outside access, that doesn’t mean you can’t encourage window time.

Cat Hammocks

Companies that make cozy cat furniture know just what they like. There are many options for your cat to be propped up, all nice and comfortable in their favorite window.

The ultimate design you choose will depend on your preference, window strength, and aesthetic goals. Some cat hammocks can hang off the window’s frame, while others suction to the window itself.

Abyssinian cat close-up on hammock in the house
Image Credit: Natalia Tretiakova, Shutterstock

Window Cages

If you want to really go the extra mile for your cat, there are tons of pre-manufactured and DIY options available for cat window cages. These cages prevent your cat from escaping into the great outdoors while allowing them to get some fresh air.

If you think you have a window that is compatible with a design, you can look at options to extend your window space and give your cat the luxury of that freedom.

You can typically buy window hangers pre-manufactured on sites like Amazon or scour Pinterest for a DIY you can build today.

Teach Your Cat to Walk on a Leash

Teaching a cat to walk on a leash might be pretty tricky. But with a little patience and perseverance, your cat might be able to perform this action and enjoy the great outdoors safely with human companions.

Companies make cat-specific harnesses and leashes to securely control your cat without them getting away. Proper sizing and set are crucial elements when you are purchasing a harness. The last thing you want is for your cat to escape you at an opportunistic moment.

Black tabby Maine Coon with harness
Image Credit: DenisNata, Shutterstock

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Protecting Houseplants, Décor, Curtains, & Blinds

You might be getting a little bit aggravated with your tiny wild cats. After all, cats hanging out in the window can equal trouble, depending on what they will knock over to get there.

You might need adjustments if you have breakables or expensive blinds and curtains in your window. Choose a window spot in the house to attract your cats where you want them to be.

You can create a cozy spot for them to hang out, attract them with cat grass or catnip, or start putting their favorite treats by the windowsill. That way, your cat will naturally want to sit by a specific window, leaving your potential goodies alone in the meantime.

If your cat feels ownership of a specific window, especially one they favor, you can reduce trouble for other items. Restricting access might be in the cards, too, if your feline is particularly stubborn.

cat sitting near window
Image Credit: alekuwka, Shutterstock

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Most cats will enjoy looking out the window despite your best efforts to prevent them from doing so. They enjoy seeing what goes on out there, and some probably wish they could join in on the sun and fun.

If you live in a spot where your cat can’t roam outside, you can take the tips we offer in this article to enhance their window-sitting experience.

Featured Image Credit: Konstantin Aksenov, Shutterstock

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