My Cat Just Sleeps All the Time, Is That Okay? What Is the Proper Sleep Time?
Many pet owners may hold the belief that their cats sleep a lot. Prolonged sleep can raise concerns. This time, the relationship between cats and sleep will be discussed.
✨How long is a cat’s sleep time? Does the sleep time change depending on the age of the cat?
It’s noteworthy that cats have a prolonged sleeping period.
Pet owners who are concerned about their feline sleeping frequently and remaining inactive can calm down. However, the duration of sleep may vary based on the cat’s age and overall health.
Let’s now discuss the sleeping period of cats.
❂ How much does a cat sleep in one day?
When observing a feline that spends a significant amount of time sleeping, one may question if it’s excessive. The term “cat” is believed to have derived from the phrase “sleeping child.”
Calculating the average amount of time a cat sleeps per day results in a range of 12 to 16 hours, equivalent to half of the day.
However, this does not mean they are inactive the entire day. They take brief naps, become active, move around, and repeat the pattern, leading to a total of approximately half a day’s worth of sleep.
❂ Growing kittens have a longer sleep time
The average amount of sleep for kittens is between 18 to 20 hours daily, which is quite extensive. This translates to approximately 7 to 8 hours of sleep throughout the day.
During the growing phase, a substantial amount of sleep is necessary for kittens to grow, as they tend to consume a lot of food and spend a significant portion of their day sleeping.
❂ Senior cats also have long sleeping hours.
Senior cats often have extended periods of sleep. It’s normal for them to spend most of the day sleeping, just as they did when they were kittens.
As they age, their immunity and metabolism decline, causing them to use more energy for even simple movements, which results in less physical energy.
Although they may become less active in their senior years, they are generally considered to be “healthy.” There is no cause for concern as long as they have a good appetite, even if they sleep for extended periods.
Cats, regardless of age, typically sleep for longer periods than humans. Considering them as “sleeping animals,” it may not be an issue if they sleep all day.
✨Are cats animals that can’t sleep deeply?
Although cats have prolonged sleeping periods, the quality of their sleep is not particularly deep. This is demonstrated by instances where cats seem to awaken or startle in response to stimuli while they sleep, which pet owners may have observed.
In essence, cats engage in napping rather than deep sleep, and this is related to the specific state of their sleep.
The terms “REM sleep” and “non-REM sleep” are commonly known among individuals. REM sleep refers to a state where the body is at rest while the mind is active, whereas non-REM sleep is characterized by a state in which the mind is at rest and the body is active.
Cats experience alternating periods of REM and non-REM sleep, but since their proportion of REM sleep is high, their sleep remains in a shallow state.
✨Why do cats sleep so long in the first place?
The origins of domestic cats can be traced back to their time in the wild. Many characteristics, including their physical build and movements, still persist in their behavior and one such example is their tendency for extended periods of sleep.
❂ Intelligence and power to catch prey are necessary
Cats that existed in the wild were required to hunt and consume their prey. Their prey, consisting of small animals and insects, were nimble, despite their size being smaller than the cats. In order to successfully capture these creatures, the cats needed to have the ability to approach undetected and the strength to immediately overpower their target.
To restore their physical power and get ready for future hunting endeavors, the cats would engage in extended periods of sleep.
❂ I have to win against rival cats
In the wilderness, there are numerous “competing felines.” The environment can be harsh, making it difficult to hunt for food, and at times, the prey that has been found may be taken by another cat. Losing one’s prey results in a loss of energy, so every sighting of prey is a crucial opportunity.
To be ready for these situations, it is necessary to conserve energy. Hence, a lot of sleeping is required.
❂ The wild habits still remain
The behaviors characteristic of cats are still present in domesticated cats. Although they may not nap throughout the day because they are given food by their owners, they instinctively conserve energy to be active during daylight hours.
✨ Is it not well? What to worry about with a cat’s “sleep”
The role of “sleep” in conserving a cat’s energy is significant. However, there are also signs of ill health that may be revealed during sleep.
❂ Does not react to human movements or sounds all the time
Approximately 20% of a cat’s sleep is in a deep state, meaning it may appear to be sleeping soundly even if approached.
Cats typically have light sleep and can easily awaken if approached quietly.
If a cat does not stir despite close proximity, it could indicate the presence of health issues.
When a cat consistently sleeps in the same location and does not alter its position, it is important to exercise caution.
❂ Breathing is strange
The expression “sleeping soundly” is appropriate when a healthy cat is at rest. This is particularly true when the cat is sleeping on its belly, as this position reflects complete relaxation.
However, if the cat’s breathing is rapid and labored, it is an indicator of poor health, and a visit to the vet is advisable.
It is important to note that snoring, making noises resembling speech, and twitching legs are typical occurrences during feline sleep and should not cause concern.
It is crucial to pay attention if the cat’s behavior deviates significantly from the norm.
❂ It’s like insomnia… with extremely little sleep time.
It appears that many cats tend to sleep more during the daylight hours, and become more active at night, particularly if their owner is frequently absent during the day. Even if the cat is awake during the day, it is not uncommon for it to wake up during the night as well.
However, excessive night-time activity in cats should also raise concerns about the possibility of insomnia. If a cat does not sleep adequately during the day or night, it can lead to a depletion of energy.
In adult cats, the likelihood of estrus affecting their sleep patterns should also be considered. In senior cats, hyperthyroidism, which increases their level of activity, is suspected.
Kittens are often awake due to a desire to play or hunger, but it cannot be ruled out that they may be experiencing some sort of discomfort. If you observe any changes in the cat’s sleeping patterns, such as prolonged periods of wakefulness, it is recommended to consult a veterinarian.
✨ What happens if you become sleep deprived?
Cats that are naturally inclined to sleep a lot can become sleep deprived if their normal sleeping patterns are disrupted. This can lead to increased stress in the cat.
When stress accumulates, cats may become less calm and irritable. Even if an owner tries to bond with their cat, the cat may become resistant and bristle their fur.
Furthermore, to cope with stress, a cat may excessively lick their body, resulting in skin inflammation. As sleep deprivation continues, the cat’s resistance decreases, making them more susceptible to illness and infections, leading to a decline in physical health.
It is important for cat owners to properly manage the cat’s sleeping patterns, as this also affects their lifespan and the goal of ensuring a long and healthy life for their beloved pet.
✨ What the owner can do to prevent sleep deprivation
Sleep time is important for cats, so here are some things that owners can do to make it comfortable.
❂ Adjusting the temperature
It has been noted that the quality of sleep can vary based on whether the environment is perceived as “cold” or “hot”. When sleeping in a curled up position, it may feel “cold”, whereas lying on one’s back with limbs extended on a cold surface, such as a floor, may result in a “hot” sensation.
The body temperatures of humans and cats differ, and what may feel comfortable for humans may not have the same effect on cats. It is widely believed that a temperature range of 15-22°C is suitable for cats, and it is crucial to maintain a temperate environment that is appropriate for the season to ensure the cat can sleep comfortably.
❂ Let’s make a comfortable bed
Let’s create a bed for the cat to lounge and rest.
★ Dark environment
Dollars tend to prefer dark environments where they won’t be vulnerable to threats. Although domesticated cats don’t face threats, they may still seek out a dark and enclosed space due to instinct.
Providing items such as cardboard boxes or baskets may attract them as a place to sleep.
★ Elevated location
Elevated locations are naturally desirable as a place of safety from potential threats. It may be beneficial to designate a sleeping area for the cat, such as on a cat tree or on furniture.
★ Warm window sill
Cats enjoy basking in the sun on window sills. During the colder months, they tend to search for a warm spot in the sun’s rays.
If the window sill is a preferred spot, providing some space there will bring the cat joy.
❂ Don’t disturb the sleeping cat
The cat’s sleeping position can be adorable, which may tempt one to hold or touch it. It’s best to avoid waking a sleeping cat if possible.
Disrupting the cat’s sleep with toys or treats will negatively impact the quality of its sleep. It may be beneficial to instruct children in the household not to disturb the cat when it is sleeping.
❂ Don’t make noise
A cat’s sleep can be disrupted by even the slightest of sounds. For a cat that is familiar with the sounds of their owner’s movements and the TV being turned on, which are part of daily life, there may not be an issue. However, if the noise level is excessively high, the cat may wake up more frequently and have difficulty sleeping.
To ensure that a cat’s sleep is not disturbed, it is best to avoid making loud noises such as banging the door of the room shut, having kids make noise near where the cat is sleeping, and playing music at a high volume. These sounds may seem like noise to the cat.
✨Know by the sleeping posture! The cat’s sleep quality and relaxed mood
The act of curling up, sleeping in a small position with the belly facing upward and unprotected, and stretching legs out sideways while sleeping are considered adorable and can provide a calming effect just by observing them. Observing a pet cat sleep in an adorable manner is also considered a privilege for the owner.
The quality of sleep can be gauged to a certain degree by the sleeping posture. It also indicates the comfort level and quality of sleep.
❂ Sleeping curled up
Earlier, it was stated that curling up while sleeping may occur due to low temperatures. To regulate body temperature, one should verify if the surrounding temperature is comfortable.
❂ Sleeping on their back with their belly facing up
Sleeping on the stomach with the back facing up is commonly observed when the temperature is warm. This position is believed to facilitate the release of body heat, so it is important to ensure that the environment is not overheating.
It is generally assumed that when a pet sleeps on their back in a vulnerable position, they are in a relaxed state. Even if the room temperature has been confirmed to be comfortable, this posture may indicate that the pet is sleeping soundly and comfortably, demonstrating a high level of trust in their owner and providing a sense of enjoyment.
❂ Sleeping with arms sideways
A relaxed sleeping position that suggests the individual is content with the temperature and not experiencing discomfort from being too hot or cold is observed.
Cats are known to sleep for extended periods of time, which may vary slightly based on their age. It is reported that they have light sleep, but if their sleep quality is good, they are able to lead a healthy and vibrant life with a longer lifespan. Conversely, if their sleep quality is poor, it can negatively impact their health. Improving the quality of their sleep can be achieved by the owner avoiding disturbance during sleep and spending quality time with the cat while they are awake. Kindly observe them rather than waking them abruptly with the statement “You’re always sleeping!”.