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Why does my cat sleep on me? 4 reasons

When I adopted my cat, I prepared myself well with everything my little one would need. I bought her a lot of toys, her litter box, and a beautiful cat bed, which took me a long time to choose because I wanted to make sure it met all the requirements and was extra comfortable. One of the first things I wondered was, “why does my cat sleep on me?

My little Louie used her bed for five or six days at most. From there, she passed to sleep with Charlie, my Maltese, and after just a few days, when she learned how to climb to my bed, she declared it Louie’s territory. From that day on, my cat sleeps on top of me, sometimes on my head, chest, or legs, but I always wake up with a cat on top of me.

Since I’m indeed not the only cat parent this happens to, I decided to investigate why my cat loves to sleep on me, and this is what I found.

Why does my cat sleep on me? 4 common reasons

Perhaps the activity cats do the most, and the most characteristic one is sleeping, not in vain cats sleep approximately 16 hours a day, more than fifty percent of the day! As you can imagine, the places they choose to perform such an important activity are not mere coincidence, and here I will tell you why.

1. To mark its territory

As cute as they are, cats are territorial and as docile as they can be. They cannot be separated from that ancestral instinct to mark.

If your cat sleeps on you, it’s most likely because it claims you as its property. That’s right. Cats have many scent glands all over their bodies, through which they secrete pheromones and hormones to transfer their scent to everything they touch. You’ve probably seen your cat rubbing against the furniture or rolling around on the doormat at the entrance of your house, and that is only to let know all the neighborhood cats that he lives there.

The same happens with you when the cat sleeps on you because although humans can’t perceive the smell of pheromones, cats can, and that’s why, wherever you go, when you meet a cat on the road, that feline will know there’s a cat at home waiting for you to come back.

2. To bond with you

When cats are young, they sleep with their mother and siblings, all together in the same space, and many times, when they grow up, they continue to do so with the other cats in their home. This co-sleeping activity creates and reinforces bonds between them, as they do not sleep with just anyone but only with individuals in their close circle.

why does my cat sleep on me - bonding

When a cat sleeps on you, he may be trying to reinforce his bond with you, and it’s his way of telling you that he trusts and loves you very much. You can consider that your cat sees you as one of the pack.

Pay attention, and you’ll also notice that he doesn’t sleep on everyone in the house. He usually only has this behavior with his favorite human. Lucky you!

3. To get warmth

A cat’s body temperature is higher than ours, usually between 100 and 102 degrees Fahrenheit. For this reason, they love to take sunbathe and lie down in warm places, and when it comes to sleeping, it is the same. They always look for a place that keeps them warm and tucked in all night.

Although you may not know it, your body emanates heat, and your clever cat knows it. When your cat wants to sleep, he tries to lie on your chest or between your legs; it doesn’t matter. What counts is to be on top of you to take advantage of this inexhaustible energy source. Who would have thought that, besides loving us, we are comfortable and cozy with them?

4. To feel safe

Think about it, when we sleep, we are more vulnerable and exposed to anyone who might attack or steal from us because we are unaware. Your cat is very concerned about this. That’s why your cat prefers to sleep in a group, so it can rest knowing that someone else in the pack is keeping watch.

And when it comes to sleeping with his human, he probably knows that you sleep as peacefully as he does, but your cat trusts you so much that he is sure that in case of any danger, you will protect him at all costs.

You can be sure your cat appreciates that you care for him at all times, especially when he sleeps. And you, for your part, value your cat’s trust by being vulnerable in front of you (if anyone is proud, it’s your precious kitty).

why does my cat sleep on me - safety

What’s the meaning of your cat sleeping on different parts of your body?

  • Chest: The constant and rhythmic beating of your heart is soothing for your cat and reminds him of his time with his mother.
  • Legs: This is the ideal place to keep warm, and they are also very well protected if they lie between your legs.
  • Stomach: The constant up and down of your stomach every time you breathe gives them a lot of calm.
  • Head: It is one of the safest and most static places on your body. If you move around a lot during the night, it won’t bother your cat at all, plus it is a part of your body that always keeps its warmth.

Why does my cat sleep on me? Final thoughts

Interesting, isn’t it? You probably already imagined that one of the reasons why your cat sleeps on you is simply because it loves you, and you were right. Our cats have many ways of communicating with us, it’s just a matter of paying attention and doing a little research, and voilà, you’ll be a cat language expert.

Now that you know why your cat loves to sleep on you, you’ll be able to enjoy these moments even more and feel closer to your furry friend. So the next time your cat lays on your chest or legs, take a deep breath, pet him gently and enjoy this bonding moment between you. Cats are beautiful creatures that always know how to make us feel loved.

Does your cat sleep on you? Why do you think he does it? We would love to know in the comments!

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