If your cat is usually aloof, seeming to keep their distance, it may come as a surprise to wake up and find them sleeping at the foot of your bed. So why do cats sleep at your feet? How does it benefit them, and what does it mean for your bond?
Cats lay at your feet in bed for a few reasons, some of which involve instinct, while others reflect their bond with you. Ready to find out more about why cats sleep at your feet in bed? Get comfortable, settle down with your furry friend, and read on with us today.
Why Do Cats Sleep At Your Feet
There are three main reasons why cats sleep at your feet: security, comfort, and warmth. Your cat is a creature of habit, and once they know that your bed is a safe place, they are likely to return again and again.
Seek Comfort and Security
Your cat is most vulnerable when they are asleep, so sleeping close to you, such as by your feet, can indicate that they trust you and feel secure with you. This spot also provides them with a quick and clear escape route if they are startled. Your cat’s instinct drives them to prefer spaces with several escape routes when resting or sleeping.
They Like the Warmth
By laying close to you, your cat is provided with a warm and safe area to sleep in. Just like you, your cat prefers to be comfortable and warm when sleeping, so they’ll pick a spot that provides these comforts. The end of the bed tends to be one of the cooler options for your cat, so you may find that they move from the end of the bed to be closer to you for more warmth through the night.
Is It Okay For My Cat To Sleep At My Feet?
It is completely normal for your cat to sleep by your feet or at the end of your bed. Your cat naturally wants to feel safe when they are at its most vulnerable, and they are vulnerable when asleep. The foot of your bed is one of the most tactical positions in your bedroom. And, since cats do not like to feel trapped, they prefer sleeping in a spot with several escape routes. In most cases, the bed offers access to multiple escape routes.
There are a few occasions when your cat should not sleep in your bed with you. However, these situations are quite specific. For example, if you know that you kick and move around in bed often, you may accidentally injure a very young or older cat in your sleep. Your cat should also not sleep in a bed with very young children. This is because they pose a suffocation risk. Do not assume that your cat will stay in the same position all night, as many tend to move around depending on whether they need to warm up or cool off.
Why Do Cats Sleep At Your Feet: FAQs
Still wondering why cats sleep at your feet? Feel free to check out our Frequently Asked Questions for more details. If in doubt about your cat’s sleeping habits, it’s always best to speak to your local vet for advice.
There are very few reasons why you should not allow your cat to sleep at your feet or at the end of your bed. Naturally, cats gravitate to this spot for security and warmth. However, if safety is a concern for you and your cat, this spot may pose a few risks. For example, if you are prone to kicking or jerking at night, you may accidentally injure your cat. Cats should also not sleep in bed with young children due to the suffocation risk, even if they stay at the end of the bed, as they tend to move around at night depending on their temperature.
Many pet parents assume that their cats do not “like” them if their cat does not sleep near them. Do not be disheartened if this happens. To a cat, even being in the same room as you is considered “hanging out”. They may simply avoid sleeping with you if the bed is too hot, the sheets don’t feel right to them, or they feel trapped in that area. As well as this, every cat is different, and you may find that one cat enjoys sleeping with you while another prefers to be alone.
It is important to note that forcing a cat to interact with you will not strengthen your bond. Your aim should be to encourage them to interact with you of their own free will. First and foremost, allow your cat to come to you first. You do not want to invade their space or make them feel trapped. When cats feel trapped or threatened, they will avoid you. Gently encourage them to approach you, offering treats where appropriate, and always monitor their body language for signs of discomfort. Your cat may withdraw consent to being stroked at any time, and being able to spot this withdrawal is important for making them feel safe and secure with you. Only then will they have the desire to interact with you, including sleeping alongside you.
If your cat sleeps close to you, it is a major sign of trust and affection. Your cat is vulnerable when they sleep, so having them choose you as a source of safety shows that they feel secure around you. If your cat does not sleep with you and you would like them to, never try to force them to do so. They must feel secure in your presence in order to want to sleep close to you.
Many cats appear to prefer specific sleeping positions. One of the most common is affectionately dubbed the “crescent” position, which can be likened to the “donut” position in dogs. In this position, your cat curls up into a ball with their head towards their feet and their tail tucked in. This sleeping position provides them with warmth while also allowing them quick preparation to move if they must.
Cats sleep at your feet for security, comfort, and warmth above all else. It is a sign of trust if your cat seeks you out to sleep alongside at night. However, if your cat prefers to sleep alone, don’t take it to heart. Every cat is different, and some may simply feel safer elsewhere in the home.