Veterinarian-written / veterinarian-approved articles for your cat.

Why Do Cats Like to Sit up High?

Cats can feel safer up high than they do at ground level.

Does your cat like to climb up on top of the refrigerator and watch you prepare dinner? Maybe you're minding your own business and reading a book when suddenly you feel eyes on you from the top of the bookshelf. Why do some cats like to sit up high?

Predators Use Height to Track Prey

Cats are predators at heart, and predators can use height to spy on, track, and ultimately pounce on prey below them. We're not saying your cat sees you as prey, but it is inbred in a cat's brain that getting up high and watching what goes on below can be a great tactic.

Small Cats Can Get Away from Predators by Climbing Trees

In the wild, small cats can be prey to larger carnivores. Climbing a tree to rest, sleep, or eat is safer for these cats than doing so down on the ground.

Indoor cats can find safety benefits to getting up high and watching what goes on below, too. For instance, if there are visitors in the home, other cats making mischief, or rowdy kids, your kitty might feel better up high where she feels safer but where she can still keep an eye on what's going on.

How Can You Use High Spaces to Decrease Your Cat's Stress?

Most cats feel better if they have some high perches that they can retreat to when they feel the need. Especially in multiple cat homes, it's important to have high perches, tall scratching posts, cleared off windowsills, and other areas where the cats can get some height. Some people even like to build catwalks high on their walls that range from simple shelves within stepping distance of each other to elaborate tunnels, perches, and walkways.

If your cat is exhibiting inappropriate behavior like Cat Not Using Litter Box? Inappropriate Urination in Cats or scratching furniture and you have had the veterinarian check for medical causes, stress could be the culprit. Creating vertical space for your cat to use can be part of the solution toward helping your cat feel better. You can learn more here: "Stress in Cats."

You May Also Like These Articles:

Is Your Cat Normal?

Amazing Cat Facts to Know and Share

Why Does My Cat Sleep on My Head?

Why Do Some Cats Carry Food Out Of Their Bowls to Eat It?

Why Do Cats Knock Things Over?

Cat Myths: Separating Fact from Fiction

Do Cats Dream?

Stop Doing These Things to Your Cat Right Now

Disclaimer: This website is not intended to replace professional consultation, diagnosis, or treatment by a licensed veterinarian. If you require any veterinary related advice, contact your veterinarian promptly. Information at is exclusively of a general reference nature. Do not disregard veterinary advice or delay treatment as a result of accessing information at this site. Just Answer is an external service not affiliated with

Notice: Ask-a-Vet is an affiliated service for those who wish to speak with a veterinary professional about their pet's specific condition. Initially, a bot will ask questions to determine the general nature of your concern. Then, you will be transferred to a human. There is a charge for the service if you choose to connect to a veterinarian. Ask-a-Vet is not manned by the staff or owners of, and the advice given should not delay or replace a visit to your veterinarian.