What Are the Whiskers on the Top of a Cat’s Head? – Everything You Need To Know – Fumi Pets

What Are the Whiskers on the Top of a Cat's Head - Everything You Need To Know - Fumi Pets

Last Updated on March 4, 2024 by Fumipets

Unveiling the Mystery: What Are the Whiskers on the Top of a Cat’s Head?


Cats, those mysterious and enchanting creatures, are adorned with a set of extraordinary features that contribute to their feline charm. Among these, whiskers, scientifically known as vibrissae, play a crucial role in a cat’s sensory perception. While most of us are familiar with the whiskers around a cat’s face, have you ever wondered about those intriguing whiskers on the top of their heads?

In this exploration, we unravel the secrets behind the whiskers positioned atop a cat’s head, delving into their purpose and significance in the feline world.

What Are the Whiskers on the Top of a Cat’s Head?

Whiskers are as essential to your cat as your vision and sense of touch are to you. They are much more than simply a beautiful body feature; they provide her with vital information for her actions both inside and outside your home, at night and during the day.

Those Whiskers

Your cat’s whiskers are thicker and longer than her body hair. This cat part’s official Latin name is “vibrissa” for a single whisker and “vibrissae” for the plural version. Your cat loses her hair to allow for the growth of new, stronger whiskers. Your cat’s whisker pads — the small, indentation places where her whiskers protrude from her hair — are arranged in such a manner that it helps her defend herself.

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Examine the layout of your cat’s whiskers while she is in various moods. They stick straight out when she’s pleased and comfortable. She pushes them back against her face when she’s angry.

The Function of Cat Whiskers | Was It Designed?

Importance Of Cat Whiskers

Each whisker is linked to a blood vessel under your cat’s skin. When anything makes touch with her whiskers like air or your finger, the link to the blood capsule under her skin pulls the blood to one side of the blood sinus. This sends a signal to her facial nerves, which then sends a signal to her brain, alerting her to the presence of anything hazardous or your finger nearby. She reacts by being even more vigilant in order to defend herself.

Your cat is a nocturnal creature. She enjoys hunting, playing, and waking you up at night. She’s fully focused on her target while she’s hunting, even if it’s only for fun. Despite the fact that she can see in the dark better than you can, she relies on her whiskers to alert her to objects in her surroundings that she would otherwise miss because of her visual concentration on her prey. If you have a window open at night, for example, a breeze may cause a curtain to flutter. The fluttering curtain causes a shift in the air current when your cat walks by, alerting the eye whiskers, blood sinuses, and nerves that something is moving in the room. To keep them safe, she shuts her eyes. Superciliary whiskers are the eye whiskers that resemble extraterrestrial antennae.

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Tufts Above The Eyes

You’ve probably noticed that your cat has lengthy “hairs” over her eyes. These are whiskers, not hairs. When your cat’s whiskers sense danger, she shuts her eyes to protect them from harm. She is totally concentrated on that mouse, ball, or your foot while she is pursuing her prey. When she’s not looking, her brow whiskers serve as a second pair of eyes.

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File:Cat whiskers closeup.jpg - Wikipedia

Whisker Precautions

You may have believed your cat’s whiskers on her body and above her eyes needed to be trimmed. She sheds a few whiskers at a time, so she only loses one or two at a time.

She loses the sensory protection she requires as she travels through her days and nights by shaving off a complete set of whiskers. It may take up to three months for your cat’s whiskers to regrow, so put the cuticle scissors away and let her retain her whiskery look.


Q&A: Understanding the Whiskers on the Top of a Cat’s Head


Why do cats have whiskers on the top of their heads?

The whiskers on the top of a cat’s head, also known as supraorbital or superciliary whiskers, serve a unique purpose. These specialized vibrissae assist cats in navigating tight spaces and gauging the dimensions of openings. They play a crucial role in helping cats determine if they can fit through openings without getting stuck.


How do these whiskers differ from the ones around a cat’s face?

While the whiskers around a cat’s face are multifunctional and aid in detecting changes in air currents, detecting nearby objects, and measuring distances, the whiskers on the top of their heads are more specialized. The supraorbital whiskers are longer and are primarily geared towards assessing the width of openings and ensuring a cat’s safe passage through various spaces.


Are these whiskers more sensitive than the ones on the face?

Yes, the whiskers on the top of a cat’s head are generally more sensitive than the facial whiskers. This heightened sensitivity helps cats precisely gauge the dimensions of openings and navigate through spaces with precision. The increased length and sensitivity of these whiskers aid in preventing potential entrapment or discomfort for the feline.


Do all cat breeds have these whiskers on the top of their heads?

Yes, all domestic cat breeds possess whiskers on the top of their heads. This characteristic is a fundamental aspect of feline anatomy and is not exclusive to specific breeds. Whether your cat is a sleek Siamese or a fluffy Maine Coon, you can observe these supraorbital whiskers contributing to their unique sensory abilities.

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Do cats lose these whiskers, and do they grow back?

Cats may occasionally lose their whiskers due to natural shedding or environmental factors. However, these whiskers, like other vibrissae, typically grow back. It’s essential not to trim or pluck a cat’s whiskers, as they play a vital role in their sensory perception and removing them can temporarily disorient the cat.

As we embark on this journey to understand the peculiarities of our feline friends, the enigma of the whiskers on the top of a cat’s head adds another layer to the intricate tapestry of their captivating nature. These specialized vibrissae showcase the incredible adaptability of cats and their ability to navigate the world with unparalleled finesse.



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