Have you ever wondered: “Do Dogs See Colors?”, “Is It Good For My Cat to Drink Milk?” or “Why Is My Cat Peeing Outside her Litter Box?”?? We are hoping by providing this blog for our clients and friends we can help answer and inform you on some of the things you have always wondered about your pet. We will explore our best veterinary resources to give you the most informative answers we can. So to answer these three questions….

1. Do Dogs See Colors?
Dogs can see color, but not in the same way that we do. The palette of colors they can see is limited in comparison to ours; it is also less vibrant.

Eyes have “rods” and “cones” to help identify color. Rods tell us how bright or dim something is (black or white) and cones help us identify color. Humans have three kinds of cones, which help detect yellow, violet, and green.

Dogs only have two types of cones, so they see orange, yellow, and green as yellow. Blue-green is seen as white and red looks as though it is brownish-black. While they can see blue, they can’t distinguish shades, especially as the color blue gets darker.

2.  Is it Good to Give My Cat Milk to Drink?
Many people don’t think twice about giving dairy to cats. Whipped cream or yogurt have been used as a common treat, and what kind of cat commercial would be complete without depicting a nice saucer of milk? So it might surprise many cat lovers to learn that, once weaned, most cats are lactose intolerant.

Lactose intolerance means the body doesn’t produce enough lactase to break down milk into simple sugars. According to,  “it remains in the digestive system where bacteria cause it to ferment.” Undigested milk can cause issues for cats just like it can for people. Your cat will obviously be uncomfortable. Symptoms of a lactose intolerant cat include the following: diarrhea, gas and bloating. Additionally, milk offers little in the way of nutrition for cats; still, cats generally do love the taste.  

What can my cat drink in place of milk? First of all, your cat should always be able to get clean, fresh water. Milk is not a staple — unless of course you have a kitten. For adult cats, all vital nutrients can be provided by cat food alone.  If you do want to treat your cat to some milk occasionally you should consider a lactose free cat milk (yes, they make it). This kind of milk is likely to be healthier anyway. Even lactose free milk should be a treat and not a daily offering. 

3. Why is My Cat Peeing Outside the Litter Box?Kitties eliminate not just because they have to, but also because it’s a way to claim what is theirs. You can avoid “peeing outside the box” with a few litter box rules.
Cats love cleanliness. The number of litter boxes should equal the number of household cats +1. Different cats prefer different litter types, so you may have to offer a “litter box buffet” of many different types of litter until you determine which type your cat uses consistently. Litter boxes should be scooped every day and washed weekly with mild dish detergent. Cats are very sensitive to smells. A strong cleaner smell may prevent your cat from using the litter box. The size of the litter box is similar to the rules of a puppy crate. It should be large enough for your cat to stand up and turn around. Should it be opened or closed? That will depend on which your cat likes most. As far as the location goes, privacy and tranquility are key.

If none of these rules help, please see our doctors to make sure the problem is not a physical one. We want you and your cat to have a long, happy and healthy relationship!