When it comes to sleeping, cats can demonstrate a number of different behaviors. Sometimes they may like to sleep in solitude and become agitated when you touch them. Other times they may nap in your bed, looking for an opportunity to jump on you and sleep on your chest, legs, belly, or head. Such behavior is instinctive, and there are multiple reasons why cats adore sleeping on their owners. Searching for warmth, bonding, marking their territory, or dealing with solitude are just a few examples of the most common explanations.
Why does your cat adore sleeping in your bed?
Although cats are often regarded as mysterious creatures, many of their behaviors are driven by instincts and can easily be explained. After they are born, kittens spend all their time with their mother and siblings, and they usually sleep in piles most of the day. This allows them to feel secure, socialize, bond, and get all the warmth they need in order to feel comfortable. As cats grow up, they naturally look for similar conditions to nap. This explains why so many of them tend to sleep on warm radiators or tumble-dried clothes. Another cozy place for them to sleep is your bed, especially with you in it. As your body heat gives your cat what they need and look for, don’t expect them to leave you at night.
Cats like to sleep in warm spots
If you are a cat owner, you have probably observed your cat sleeping in all the sunny spots in your house or balcony, sprawling out on a radiator or a warm laptop. Why is that so common? Cats experience temperatures differently from people. Their bodies are naturally warmer than ours, as their temperature usually oscillates around 102.5º Fahrenheit. This is why they feel comfortable in spots that are snug. Touching the parts of your body makes your furry friend feel cozy and provides conditions for a perfect snooze.
Cats sleep on their owners to mark their territory
It is usually said that cats are territorial. What does this really mean? They can send signals to other cats that they own some things and places. Every cat tends to mark their territory and things with their scent. While you are sleeping with your cat on top of you, it is possible that your buddy is there because they want to mark you as theirs. This is an instinctive cat behavior, and its aim is to warn other cats in the vicinity that they should stay away from you.
Your pet wants to bond
There is also another reason explaining why cats choose to sleep and share beds with their owners: they simply want to bond. Sleeping together allows your cat to become more attached to you. Once your pet wants to sleep with you, they are trying to tell you that you are valuable to them, and they love you. What is more, being close to you allows them to feel and hear your body. Listening to your beating heart or rhythmic breaths helps them feel at ease with your body.
Sleeping with your cat helps them feel secure
In the natural environment, animals are much more vulnerable to getting attacked while sleeping. This is why outdoor kitties rarely sleep sound and usually just snooze most of the time. When it comes to domesticated felines, many of them treat their owners as safety guardians. Cats enjoy sleeping on humans as this is when they can feel that someone is guarding them. The explanation for such behavior can also be found in their early kittenhood when they spend most of their time sleeping stacked on top of one another. When kittens are tiny, they don’t have to worry about external dangers, as their mother always keeps them safe.
Which parts of your body are usually chosen by cats?
As you already know, the reasons why cats may choose to sleep on you, are different. But have you ever wondered which of your body parts are the most attractive for them and why?
Many cat owners observe that their pets prefer to sleep close to their heads. The reasons for this seem to be evident. Once we are in bed, we tend to move our heads less frequently than the rest of our body parts. What is more, sleeping on top of your head helps your cat communicate with you. In order to tell you something, felines usually gaze. Being close to your eyes makes communication easier for them.
Chest and back
Cats derive many of their sleeping habits from childhood. When kittens are tiny, they spend all their time close to one another, and they constantly hear and feel each other’s breaths and beating hearts. This gives them comfort and helps small cats to sleep better. Letting your kitty sleep on your upper body provides them with a similar feeling of being safe. This is why your four-legged friend may enjoy sleeping on your chest or back.
Most cats like sleeping on their owner’s laps. This happens mostly during the day when you sit on the couch and watch TV or read a book. If your pet ditches their cat bed just to sleep on your legs, it is probably because they need your attention and love. Laps are warm and can be reached easily by our small friends. They are also a perfect spot for you to pet your little friend. Once they start purring, you can be sure that are simply happy.
Should you let your cat sleep with you?
Sleeping with your pet is generally safe, especially if you have an indoor cat who never goes out. The issue is much more complex when it comes to outdoor cats. Domestic animals who regularly go out can transfer dirt, e.g., on their paws, and catch parasites. If your cat tends to go out, it is better not to let them inside your bedroom. Remember that cats shouldn’t sleep with small children.
How to get your cat out of your bed?
If you don’t want your cat to sleep with you, there are several things that you can try to discourage them from sleeping on you. Try the following:
- Place the cat bed next to yours. Equip your cat’s bed with a cozy blanket or a pillow, and put it close to your bed, preferably on the dresser or nightstand. This way, your cat will be able to see you all the time.
- Don’t let them in. Try to keep your cat out of your bedroom. Always close the door. Your cat can be confused for a few days, but they will eventually get used to it. Be patient.
- Give them a toy. In some cases, a fluffy buddy can be a great replacement for you. While choosing a toy, go for a plush toy made from soft material that warms up easily.
Many pet owners don’t mind their cats cuddling and sleeping with them. Remember that cats are sociable animals and they enjoy spending time with us the same as we do, even if they don’t show it.