What do Cats Like to Sleep On?: What you need to know

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Sleep! The one thing that we all need and crave daily for our health and well-being! Our little furry friends are no different and you may be asking yourself as a new cat owner ”What do cats like to sleep on”?

In this post I answer your question as well as some related questions around cats and sleep, so let’s begin!

In general, cats like to sleep high up where they feel safe, secure and where they can keep a lookout for any prey or predators. Cats tend to seek out warm sleeping places with a favourable texture and in cooler months of the year, they like to be as far away from the cold ground as possible where heat rises.

So there we go! Your kitty loves their shut-eye just as much as you do.

Cats, as we know, are weird creatures at times and we can often buy expensive cat beds to later find out that your cat isn’t using the cat bed at all but they are using the cardboard box that the bed arrived in!

Talk about being ungrateful (Good job we love them) 🙂

So in this post, we look at what type of beds cats like, what facebook members of some popular cat groups had to say about their cats and their favourite sleeping places and as always there will be lots of tips, cute cat pictures and some short stories along the way!

I hope you find my article helpful!

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For a cute little cave tent-style cat bed then this one is highly recommended from Amazon.

Do cats have a favourite place to sleep?

Cats are what you could call fussy animals and very particular in so many ways!

You can almost guarantee with a dog that if you buy them a bed to sleep in, fill it with a few toys and make it ”the special place” for them that they will sleep in the dog bed whenever they need a bit of shut-eye!

Cats on the other hand are a completely different story! Forever contrary!

I am the queen of this castle and I shall do exactly as I please!

This is why we love them though, right?

Cats tend to change their place of rest on a much more frequent basis and this often comes down to not only their preferences but also their instincts. When cats are in the wild they will often change sleeping location as a way to keep themselves safe from predators.

So cats don’t have one favourite place that they will sleep in forever! They like to change things up a little!

Here are some important things to consider when a cat chooses somewhere to sleep!

  • They like warm spaces
  • They like to have somewhere private where they feel secure
  • The resting place needs to be away from the litter box to avoid smells!
  • It needs to be away from the feeding station
  • It needs to be a place that is away from noise and passing household traffic
  • Somewhere that has not been claimed by another pet

Cats do seek out warmth and it’s quite common to see your cat seeking out places where they can get some sunshine even if they are an indoor cat!

My little girl is often found on top of the fridge in the kitchen because I have a glass roof in that room and the sun shines very brightly which she adores! She can also be found on top of the boiler in the winter, literally the warmest spot in the house!

Cats body temperatures tend to be roughly 3 degrees warmer than ours at a whopping 101.4 Fahrenheit or 38.6 degrees celsius according to howstuffworks.com

So because they are generally warmer animals not only do they seek warmth in the winter but it’s also important in the summer to provide areas where they can seek out cool!

A pet cooling matt is ideal for regulating the body temperature of your cats and you can get them pretty cheap from amazon. I bought a pet cooling matt not so long ago because believe it or not in the summer months here in the UK it’s not only good for the cats but is also very good for us humans too for sleeping on to keep cool!

Honestly, they are a total game-changer for hot humid days for humans and pets alike!

The Facebook poll results : What do cats like to sleep on?

I thought it would be interesting to find out what the guys on a popular Facebook group said in regards to where their cats like to sleep and what they like to sleep on.

The results are VERY surprising! So in this poll, we had 124 different responses and I have made the results into a table below.

**Please rotate your mobile device to see the full results in the table or swipe across**

In owners bed In very high places Rotate sleeping areas In their cat bed Other

Wow! I never realised so many cats sleep in their owner’s bed!

This kinda makes me feel guilty for not letting mine share my bed with me. I would love them to sleep in my room but they run around like crazy at night and cause so much noise so they have to sleep in the living room but I may eventually change my mind on that one day!

It seems like a lot of cats also rotate their sleeping areas which as we have already discussed is due to their instincts of keeping themselves safe from prey!

What was a total shock is that only 5% of people said that their cats slept in their bed!

How to choose a good cat bed

There are several factors to consider when choosing a good cat bed

  1. The cat bed must be the right size for your cat – This is important and it must be the right size for your cat, cats do like places where they can snuggle up tight but if it is too small for your cat they may not want to use it.
  2. Place the cat bed up high rather than the floor – You want to buy a cat bed that can be moved to different areas of the home. We already know cats love to be high off the ground. So maybe think of a bed that can be placed on top of a wardrobe or on top of the fridge freezer in the kitchen.
  3. The bed must be cosy – This is a no brainer cats love cosy places, does it look cosy to you? If not then give it a miss.
  4. The bed must be washable – You will want to be able to wash the cat bed every now and again but please dont wash the bed unless it absolutely necessary to do so because you don’t want to wash away your cats scent because this may be the one reason they are using the bed frequently.
  5. Try a cat hammock for a different type of bed – My little girl Isis loves her hammock which is part of their cat tree and I love to see her in it! What a life our cats lead, I wish I was laid in a hammock all day!
  6. Once you have decided on a bed fill it with scent – A good way to attract your cat to the bed is to make sure Kitties scent is already on the bed. You could use a sock and rub it on her cheeks and scent glands and leave it in the bed or you can even put one of your old T-shirts in there so she can smell your familiar scent.
  7. A doughnut shaped bed or one with sides – We all know cats like to hide! A bed with raised sides or the doughnut shaped bed is perfect for this and will help your cat feel safe and secure.

If you want to try a Hammock for your cat to rest and sleep on then they are worth a try, cats love them! Check out this one here and see what you think?

So you now know what is important when you are on the lookout for a new cat bed.

You may end up trying out various beds until you find one that your cat will use as her forever sleeping home and that’s normal.

Cats can be very fussy animals and even if they like their new bed for a few weeks you are still likely to find them asleep in your closet, in the bath and some of the most peculiar places!

Cats are known to switch up sleeping places and this in itself comes from the days when they were wild animals, in your cats mind if they move their sleeping places often then any predators will not remember where they sleep!

Cats will be cats!

How long do cats sleep?

In general, cats tend to sleep anywhere from 10 hours a day up to 20 hours a day depending on age. Kittens and elderly cats sleep the most (up to 20 hours) whereas cats in adulthood tend to sleep slightly less. Cats are Crepuscular meaning they are more active at dawn and dusk when their prey is most active.

Wow, and you thought you liked your sleep! It turns out cats are absolutely the kings and queens of sleep!

Cats tend to be very light sleepers, in their eyes, they need to be on the ball and ready to defend any predators or be on the lookout for prey that may come their way!

So it’s very common if a cat is woken up for them to be alert and ready for action as soon as they open their eyes, whereas it can take us, humans, a couple of hours and three coffees before we reach optimal performance!

How lucky are they!

Kittens do tend to sleep the most, I mean up to 20 hours! Talk about sleeping your life away! Sleep is very important though for the growing kitten as they release a huge amount of growth hormone when they are in their REM phase of sleep which is important for their growth and development! according to PetMD

One thing to watch out for is if Kitty is just sleeping due to general boredom, this often means you need to spend a little longer stimulating your cat/cats!

Play is very important for cats and while we are talking about playtime I wrote a fun article called ”13 fun ways to keep a cat entertained for hours!” A great read for if your cats need more playtime in their life, you have to check it out!

Now I know this is a little off-topic for ”How long does your cat sleep” but did you know that different cat sleeping positions mean different things related to how your cat is feeling? If you have never discovered Jackson Galaxy on youtube, watch this great video.

Why do cats like to sleep inside cardboard boxes?

In general, cats love sleeping in cardboard boxes because they provide a place of shelter and security. They help to provide warmth for a cat especially if you include their favourite blanket. A cardboard box often acts as a cave for them where they can also spy on their prey and be prepared to pounce.

I am often amazed at just how much my cats love cardboard boxes, I have bought so many toys for my pets in the past and they have favoured the trusty cardboard box every time over that one toy that nearly broke my bank account!

They also like to feel the texture of the cardboard beneath them and some cats even like to use the cardboard box as a scratching station to sharpen their nails.

Let’s not forget what a good insulator of heat cardboard is so they are the perfect winter sleeping spot!

So the box not only acts as a bed and a place of shelter but also a place where they can keep active and happy! The best free cat bed and toy that they will ever use and it comes free with most amazon delivery items!

Whoever said cats were not easily pleased!

Conclusion: What do cats like to sleep on?

I hope this blog post has answered your questions and given you an understanding of where cats like to sleep to help you choose the right bed for your feline friend.

Cats spend so much of their time having little catnaps that it’s important to provide comfortable safe places for cats.

It’s a good idea to have multiple places to rest in various places throughout your household and let your cat decide where they want to get some shut-eye.

We know they rotate their sleeping places due to instinct so give them the choice of where they want to rest.

One thing I would say is not to spend too much money on their cat bed, in case they don’t use it! I think our poll results above should have given you a better understanding of just how often cats sleep in their beds!

As always take care of yourself and your little bundles of joy!

Mark (aka the crazy cat man)


Mark loves Cats, he is the Daddy to two little cats who you will see throughout his blog. He has a passion for Cat care and enjoys everything cat-related. You could call him the crazy cat man.

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