A sleeping cat is the epitome of peace of mind and comfort. Many of you want to know why your cat sleeps so much and understand how he does it.
The sleep of cats is very particular, both very long, between 12 and 16 hours a day, but also very superficial to be on the lookout for possible predators.
Sleeping cat: How often do cats sleep?
When and how long a cat sleeps varies from cat to cat . The way the cat sleeps also depends on many factors, such as age, temperament or even the season or even the period of sexuality if it is not sterilized.
On average a cat sleeps half or even two thirds of the day and sleep is longer for kittens and old people.
In winter or when it rains , they sleep more, especially if they have a comfortable heater to immerse them in a cocoon of comfort.
Domestic cats sleep more than feral cats , not necessarily out of necessity, but they don’t need to be awake as much.
Cats often sleep based on your presence , they will make sure they are awake when you come home and will sleep a lot when you are not there.
How long does a cat sleep?
On average, a cat sleeps 15 hours a day, but this duration varies according to age. They can sleep for up to 8 p.m. when young. Generally a cat will spend the majority of the day sleeping and be active at night. But if you have an indoor cat, it will sleep more at night and less during the day.
In the wild, they sleep during the day to hunt at night and retain this habit in the domestic state if they can. Their excellent vision in the dark makes things much easier at night.
Only 25% of their sleep is deep, the rest is shallow sleep allowing them to sleep while being aware of their surroundings, which is essential for them in the wild to avoid being surprised by a threat while they are sleeping.
The stages of cat sleep
In cats, phases of light sleep alternate with phases of deep sleep. This allows them to recover better.
The light sleep phases last about 30 minutes and they can be quickly awakened because they remain aware of the environment during this light sleep phase, which is essential for their survival in the wild.
The deep sleep phases last about 7 minutes for a total of four hours per day. He can also wake up abruptly if he perceives a potential danger. If not, he will wake up stretching and yawning.
Why do cats sleep so much?
Cats often sleep to recharge for their next hunting trip. And even if he is a domestic, he retains this hunting instinct in his genes which means that he will always sleep a lot to get ready.
Despite the comfort and the food provided, the cat will always have to sleep to prepare to hunt even if it is totally useless in reality.
Do cats sleep at night?
You may have noticed that your cat sleeps a lot during the day and is often awake during the night. It’s a habit that comes from their mother in the beginning, making them sleep during the day to prevent them from being drowsy during the night, a more dangerous period for them.
As adults, they are often awake at night, but to hunt. There too, even if it is totally useless to him, he can keep his natural predatory behavior.
They can, however, adapt to their environment and sleep at night, especially if they sleep with you.
Sometimes you can hear your cat purring or meowing while they sleep, it’s actually because they are dreaming.
During the phases of deep sleep, the cat dreams. It then processes waking state experiences, such as hunting, playing, or cleaning.
The cats take a nap
Cats can doze off whenever they want. They often take short naps, especially after eating or exercising.
Favorite sleeping places for cats
Cats often choose to sleep in specific, warm, high places. Here are the 4 factors that make the selection of cats for their sleep:
- Panoramic view : The sleeping area is in a quiet place and over which he has a full view. Sleeping with a view of the territory comes from their genetics adapted to wild life where everything must be able to be monitored on the cat’s territory.
- Safety : Drafts, direct sunlight, air conditioning and humidity should be taken into account when choosing the location and preferably avoided.
- Calm : Cats love to hide and a blanket provides them with warmth and security. A washing machine or a fridge next to their sleeping area will, for example, force them to sleep elsewhere because they will hate sleeping there. Most of the time, cats are in light sleep and will be awakened by the various noises.
- Hygiene : The place must be clean, if possible perfumed with a smell that he likes. Cats hate dirt and it’s one of the main reasons why they refuse to use their litter box.
- Warm : Cats like to sleep warm, often close to radiators. As long as the air is not too dry. If you have an outdoor cat, you may notice that it will seek out every bit of sunlight to sleep and bask in.
What Reduces a Cat’s Sleep Time?
Cats are able to adjust their sleep schedules to sleep less. For example, if yours is in strong natural or artificial light, it will sleep less than usual.
If they play a lot or exert themselves a lot, they will sleep a little less throughout the day.
Finally, if they eat insufficiently, they will sleep less and wake up more often. Their sleep will consist of many short naps.
Why are my cat’s habits changing?
If you start to notice that your cat is not sleeping as it used to, it may be necessary to take him to the vet.
If he begins to sleep, either more or less, it is a sign that he is suffering (mentally or physically) or that he is sick or depressed. Look at his behavior in general to see if there is something wrong with his behavior, such as apathy.
If your cat starts lying in their litter box after you change it, they are doing it for the fresh litter feel and shouldn’t be a concern.
But rest assured, the cat will mainly change its sleeping habits with age.
Where do cats sleep?
Cats generally prefer to sleep with you for the affection, warmth and security you provide. They’re toasty warm while being up high, which they love while they sleep.
The places in heights are also often privileged, generally, they sleep in height. That’s why they love their cat tree so much and often choose trees when they sleep outside.
How do I get my cat to sleep well?
If you want to ensure a sound sleep for your cat, apply the following tips:
- Choose a comfortable cat basket: Comfort is necessary for the cat with preferably a material that retains heat well.
- Make sure he can sleep high: For example, with a cat tree or another basket that is high.
- Place his basket near a heat source: Like a radiator, provided the air is not too dry for him to breathe well.
- Ensure clean air: Without the smell of cigarettes or cooking, for example, cats are very sensitive to smell.
- Make sure he sleeps quietly: Do not put the basket towards the washing machine for example.
- Keep him clean: His basket or sleeping area should be far from the litter box, for example. Cats are very hygienic.
My cat sleeps: Special cases
There are many questions that are asked about cat sleep. We will therefore see together the main ones.
Cat sleeping a lot
It is normal for a cat to sleep a lot, and up to 16 hours a day. But if you notice worrying signs in parallel, like a lack of appetite or a bad mood, go to the vet, he probably suffers from something in parallel. The younger a cat is, the more sleep it will need.
Cat sleeping on its back
A cat can sleep on its back for many reasons, such as keeping warm. But generally, he does it because he feels confident and is not afraid to reveal his belly, which is dangerous in the wild because it prevents him from defending himself.
Cat sleeping on me
Your cat sleeps on you because he feels safe there and you are an interesting source of heat for him. He can also choose you as a pillow because he considers you a bit like his mother.
Cat sleeping in a ball
Sleeping in a ball in a cat can help it warm up and not lose heat through its paws. He can also do it if he does not feel safe.
Cat sleeping under the duvet
The duvet provides them with warmth, in addition to allowing them to hide in a place where he can monitor his surroundings.
Cat sleeping in its litter box
As we have seen, if the litter is clean it is normal, if it is a kitten, it is normal too.
But if not, he probably feels insecure and sleeps in his litter box because it represents his territory. He can choose this behavior if there is a change he doesn’t like.
Cat shaking when sleeping
Cats may shiver when they dream, this is completely normal as long as the tremor does not continue for long periods of time. In which case, a visit to the veterinarian is essential.
Cat sleeping with eyes open
A cat sleeping with its eyes open is normal, it does so when in REM sleep to stay aware of its surroundings. REM sleep accounts for the vast majority of a cat’s sleep time.
Cat that sleeps all day
If your cat sleeps a little more than 4 p.m., that’s not normal. He can be bored and spend his time sleeping to pass the boredom or even be sick or stressed Consult the veterinarian if it lasts a long time.
Cat that sleeps a lot and eats little
Your cat is sick, if it persists, the veterinarian is the only solution to overcome the problem.
Cat drooling when sleeping
This is normal in most cases, as long as he only drools when he sleeps . If he also drools during the day, that’s a problem that needs to be fixed.
Cat sleeping on its stomach
This is the natural position of the cat, the most comfortable. You will see him sleeping in this position most of the time, it is also the most convenient for him.
Cat sleeping on my stomach
It is a sign of affection and also of comfort for him, you offer him warmth and security.
Cat not sleeping
There is an underlying issue that needs a vet visit. A cat in pain will tend to sleep less.
Cat sleeping outside
If he has access to the outdoors, your cat will spend a lot of time sleeping outside, especially in the summer and spring. Cats love these seasons to go outside, and if they find a safe place to sleep they will often sleep outside, especially at night. This also allows them to hunt nearby at night.
The final word
Cat sleep is fascinating, through this article we hope to have answered all your questions about cat sleep.