Just about every cat on the planet loves to sleep. And cats sleep on average around 15 hours per day, and can even sleep up to 20 hours in a single 24-hour period. That’s a lot of slumber for such a little body! Have you ever wondered why Fluffy sleeps so much? Learn more about your cat’s sleeping habits in this article.
Your cat’s physiology has evolved from lions, panthers, and other big cats in the wild. That means stalking and hunting instincts are built into your domesticated cat. It’s those instincts that cause your cat to sleep most of her day.
Hunting takes a tremendous amount of energy for your cat, and the best way to conserve energy for the hunt is by sleeping. That’s why domesticated house cats and giant cats in the wild both tend to sleep a lot, especially during daylight hours. They’re storing energy for the coming hunt, even if they’re just stalking a cat toy below the dining room table.
Cats go back and forth between a dozing state and a deep sleep while they’re resting. The dozing period can last anywhere from a few minutes to a half hour—Fluffy remains semi-alert during this time and will often position herself so that she can easily hop up and move quickly. But the deep sleep portion of the cycle lasts only about five minutes or so before your cat goes back to the dozing period. The entire time your cat rests, this cycle continues.
Cats are crepuscular, which is a zoological term that refers to animals (or insects) that are active primarily between dusk and dawn. That explains why Fluffy is most active in the early morning and evening hours! It’s definitely annoying to have your cat’s antics wake you up at five in the morning, but it’s just built into your feline friend. In the middle of the day, you’ll usually find your cat napping peacefully. It’s a pampered life!
Want to learn more about your cat’s sleeping habits? Do you think Fluffy’s sleep pattern seems wrong? Give your local vet clinic a call.