As a cat owner, you might have found yourself settling into bed only to have your feline friend saunter in, inspect the area and promptly decide that your head is the ideal place to sleep. Despite the variety of comfortable sleeping spots available throughout your home, your cat appears to prefer your company. But why is that? Is it safe? Here we dive into these questions and more, revealing some of the intriguing reasons why your cat loves to share your bed.

7 Adorable Reasons Why Your Cat Sleeps With You

1. Security and Safety

Firstly, a significant factor driving your cat to sleep near you is a sense of safety. While cats are petite predators, they also risk being preyed upon by larger animals. This instinctive vigilance doesn’t simply vanish in the safety of your home. Sleep is a vulnerable state, and by choosing to sleep with you, your cat enjoys an extra layer of protection against any potential threats. Your presence offers security and helps them relax, knowing that they can trust you to keep them safe.

2. Seeking Warmth

Cats are notorious heat-seekers. Whether it’s a sunny window ledge or a warm radiator, your cat is adept at finding and occupying the warmest spot in your home. Their bodies run a few degrees warmer than humans, so it’s not surprising that they crave warmth more than we do. By snuggling up next to you, they’re harnessing your body heat to stay cozy, especially during colder months.

3. Marking Their Territory

Cats are highly territorial creatures. When they sleep in your bed, they don’t see it as your space, but as theirs. As they sleep on or next to you, they’re essentially marking you and your bed with their scent, signifying to other animals that you belong to their ‘tribe’. This marking behavior extends to other actions too, such as rubbing their heads or bodies against you.

Cats are highly territorial creatures. When they sleep in your bed, they don't see it as your space, but as theirs.
Cats are highly territorial creatures. When they sleep in your bed, they don’t see it as your space, but as theirs.

4. Emotional Support

Studies have shown that cats can interpret human emotions, reacting more positively to smiles than frowns. If you’re feeling low or anxious, your cat might attempt to comfort you by being present and offering affection. Their close proximity and soothing purrs can ease your worries, making you feel loved and cared for.

5. Comfort

Of course, we can’t ignore the simple comfort your bed offers. With soft sheets, fluffy pillows, and warm blankets, your bed is an inviting place for anyone – including your cat. Given that cats sleep between 13 to 18 hours a day, it’s only natural that they’d gravitate towards the coziest spots in the house.

Nairo and Thibaut, two brother cats are sleeping
Given that cats sleep between 13 to 18 hours a day, it’s only natural that they’d choose the coziest spots in the house.

6. Display of Affection

Sleeping with you is a genuine display of affection from your cat. It indicates that they feel safe with you, appreciate your warmth, enjoy your scent, and value your companionship. While cats are independent creatures, they do form strong bonds with their humans. If they snuggle against you, it’s because they consider you a member of their family.

7. Preference for Your Head

Your head, interestingly enough, seems to be a preferred spot for many cats. Humans lose a lot of heat through their heads, making it the warmest place in your bed – and the most attractive to your cat. Plus, your head tends to move the least during sleep, reducing the likelihood of disturbances.

Sleeping with backs toward us: A sign of trust

Contrary to what it might seem, a cat turning its back to you is a sign of trust, not rudeness. They’re saying that they trust you to guard their back and don’t expect betrayal. If they feel threatened, they would likely choose to sleep facing you or stay away from you.

Understanding Cat Behavior: Why do they turn their back toward us in bed?

Cats, like many other animals, are fundamentally driven by their instincts. In the wild, predators usually attack from the back or from blind spots. Therefore, when a cat sleeps with its back toward you, it is showing you that it trusts you to protect it while it’s in this vulnerable state. In essence, they trust you enough not to consider you a threat that could harm them while they’re sleeping.

Building Trust

This behavior also indicates a level of comfort and familiarity. Your cat has observed your actions, understands your behavior, and has built up enough trust to show you its back. This trust has probably been earned over time through positive interactions and consistent behavior on your part.

Testing The Theory

If you’re interested in testing this theory, try changing your behavior around your cat. If you play aggressively or disrupt your cat’s peace, you’ll find that your cat may start sleeping with one eye open, or at least facing you. It will continue to do so until it’s sure that the rough phase has ended and it can go back to trusting you completely.

The Tail End

So, if you’ve noticed that your cat turns its back towards you when it sleeps, take it as a compliment. It’s a clear sign that your cat feels safe around you and trusts you implicitly. The best response to this would be to respect their trust: let them sleep undisturbed and maintain the peace and safety of their environment.

In conclusion, while it may appear standoffish at first glance, your cat sleeping with its back toward you is an adorable demonstration of trust and bonding. So the next time you find your cat presenting you with their back, remember they’re simply showing you one of the highest signs of trust in the feline world.

Should Your Cat Sleep With You?

I always sleep with my cats! But, not everyone is the same. Whether you should allow your cat to sleep with you depends on several factors. The primary considerations should be your personal comfort, any potential allergies, your cat’s outdoor activity, and overall health.

I always sleep with my cats. Sleeping with Thibaut the cat.
I always sleep with my cats. Here I am sleeping with Thibaut the cat.

Personal Comfort

If you enjoy your feline friend’s company and don’t mind their occasional midnight antics, then having them share your bed might be a positive experience. Some people find the cat’s purring comforting and a good sleep aid. However, if you’re a light sleeper and get easily disturbed by their movements or sounds, you may want to provide them with their own bed.


If you or anyone in your home has allergies or asthma that can be triggered by pet dander, then it’s probably best to keep your cat out of the bedroom altogether. Exposure to cat fur and dander during the night could exacerbate symptoms.

Outdoor Activity

If your cat spends a lot of time outdoors, it could potentially bring in dirt, parasites, or diseases. Regular vet check-ups and maintaining a good grooming routine can mitigate these risks, but it’s something to keep in mind.

Cat’s Health

Similarly, if your cat has health issues, like urinary tract disorders, diarrhea, or is not fully house-trained, it might have accidents in your bed. In such cases, it’s better to give them their own space where accidents are less inconvenient and easier to clean.

Bonding Time

For many cat owners, bedtime is the perfect opportunity to bond with their cats. It’s a quiet, relaxed time, and the comfort and closeness can strengthen the bond between you and your pet. If you find your cat’s presence soothing and they seem happy and comfortable, there’s no reason not to enjoy this special companionship.

In conclusion, allowing your cat to sleep with you is a personal decision that depends largely on your individual circumstances and preferences. If you decide to go ahead with it, make sure you do regular health checks and keep your bedroom clean to ensure a healthy and comfortable environment for both you and your feline friend.


M. Özgür Nevres

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