Cat Sleeping Behavior

"Cat sleeping behavior is genetic with the average cat sleeping 19 hours per day. They tend to sleep lightly and are most active during the best times of the day to hunt, during dawn and dusk."

The first thing you'll notice about cat sleeping behavior is that they sleep a lot! An average house cat sleeps about 16 hours per day. Outdoor cats sleep a little less than this. Kittens may sleep even more, because they are growing and the growth hormone is only released while they are sleeping. There is also a genetic reason for kittens to sleep a lot- it keeps them safe in the nest, and it keeps them quiet so they don't attract predators.

Why Do Cats Sleep So Much?

Why do adult cats need so much sleep? It's genetic, too. Wild cats use huge amounts of energy when they hunt, and they need to conserve energy between hunts. When sleeping, cats use very little energy and so they need to hunt less often. Of course, your pet cat has no need to hunt, but she still has the genes of her wild ancestors.

The food they eat can also cause cats to be sleepy. Cats are carnivores, and you probably know yourself that eating a lot of meat can make you sleepy.

Indoor cats may also sleep a lot out of boredom. You can help your cat sleep less and be happier and healthier by providing stimulating cat toys and playing with her with interactive toys.

Cats are light sleepers. About three-quarters of their sleep is light sleep. They may look like they are not fully asleep and their eyelids may even be slightly open. They are genetically programmed to sleep lightly so that they can awaken quickly to fight with or flee from predators or other threats.

Cats do spend one-quarter of their sleeping time in deep sleep. This is when they dream. You may notice their face and paws twitch during this time.

Cats are most active at dawn and dusk, the time when the prey of wild cats is most active. Again, this is a genetic thing. If your cat is awake and playing a lot during the night while you are trying to sleep, you can try playing with her and keeping her active during the evening so she is tired at night and will be more likely to sleep while you are sleeping.

If you notice any big changes in your cat sleeping behavior, whether she is sleeping a lot more or a lot less than normal, you should take your cat to the vet for a check-up. This could be a sign of illness.




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