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Why Does My Cat Sleep Pressed Up Against Me? 5 Possible Reasons

cat sleeping with owner
Image Credit: masik0553, Shutterstock
Last Updated on November 16, 2023 by Rachel Giordano

Cats are interesting creatures that seem to be mostly content by themselves. It’s not unusual to find your cat curled up on your bed without you in it or sunbathing on the floor alone. However, some cats prefer to sleep pressed up against their owners, but why? Is there a reason some cats may engage in this behavior?

In this post, we’ll list the five reasons why your cat sleeps pressed against you, some of which may surprise you. Let’s check them out.

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The 5 Reasons Why Your Cat Sleeps Pressed Up Against You

1. Your Cat Trusts You

Trust plays an important role in cat ownership, and your cat needs to trust you to be around you. Your cat could be sleeping up against you because he feels safe and secure and he trusts that you will not harm him. Cats are always on alert, even when it seems they are snoozing, but when they are snoozing while resting up against you, that could mean they are content, happy, and feel safe with you.

cat sleeping on electric heating pad
Image Credit: New-Africa, Shutterstock

2. Your Cat Is Claiming You

Cats are known for marking their territory, and you may be viewed as a piece of property he’s claiming as his own by sleeping right up against you! Cats are instinctively territorial, and when they sleep pressed against you, they leave their scent behind, which will communicate to other pets in the home that you are his and his alone, so back off!

3. Your Cat Wants Your Warmth

Every cat owner has seen their cat basking in the sun, and that’s because they love warmth, and that’s exactly what they get by sleeping up against their owners. You may find your cat sleeping on windowsills or even your laptop more often in colder months because of the warmth these items provide, and you’re possibly just another item to help keep your kitty warm.

cat sleeping in owner's arms
Image Credit: Impact Photography, Shutterstock

4. Your Cat Wants Comfort

Humans aren’t the only ones who deal with stress; cats can get stressed too! Sleeping up against your cat provides your cat comfort, which helps melt the stress away. However, if you feel your cat is stressed, you should assess the reason why. Ensure your cat is not urinating outside the litter box, engaging in excessive grooming, showing a decrease in appetite, and other odd behaviors.

5. Your Cat Loves You

Sometimes, this act may be your cat’s way of showing you affection and being appreciative of taking care of him. Cats are capable of forming strong bonds with their owners, and when your cat sleeps with you, you create a strong bond while you sleep.

woman sleeping with her cat
Image Credit: Pixel-Shot, Shutterstock


Should You Worry About Your Cat Sleeping Up Against You?

Most often, there is no cause for alarm if your cat is sleeping pressed against you, especially if you haven’t noticed any out-of-the-ordinary occurrences with your cat, such as increased vocalization, decreased appetite, going potty outside the litter box, and other unusual behaviors.

If your cat normally prefers to sleep alone but suddenly takes a compulsive interest in sleeping against you, you may want to investigate the behavior further, as your cat may be trying to tell you he’s in pain or stressed.

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Cats are peculiar creatures and march to the beat of their own drum. Some cats are aloof, while others are affectionate and outgoing. Sometimes, it takes time and patience for your cat to bond with you, and most of the time, it’s a positive event when your cat sleeps with you.

However, if this behavior is brand-new, you’ll want to assess any odd behaviors your kitty may display, and when in doubt, take your cat to the vet for an exam to ensure he is healthy and happy with no underlying medical issues.

Featured Image Credit: masik0553, Shutterstock

About the Author

Rachel Giordano
Rachel Giordano
Rachel Giordano is a Pensacola, Florida-based musician and writer. She lives with her partner and their two dogs, Sophie, a Boston Terrier, and Aero, a Border Collie/Sheltie mix. Rachel holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in communication and loves writing about all types of cat breeds. When she’s not writing about cats, she loves to write suspense/thriller novels. A musician by night and writer by day, she enjoys sharing her knowledge of the needs and requirements of our furry friends.

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