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Why Is My Cat Sleeping So Much? - Petsy

Why Is My Cat Sleeping So Much?

We all know that cats love to sleep! But, how much sleep is too much sleep? And, how can you identify if your cat is sleeping for the wrong reasons? 

Here’s what you need to know about why your cat is sleeping so much & how much is considered normal. 

How much sleep is considered normal? 
Cats spend an average of 15 hours sleeping, but not all of this is deep sleep. This average is inclusive of rests, cat naps, and deep sleep. Cats follow a ‘sleeping pattern’ that rarely changes except for reasons listed below - that’s when you know that your cat’s sleep isn’t normal. Sleep patterns differ from cat to cat and is dependent on their daily routine.

Why is my cat sleeping so much? 

1. Boredom
Like humans, cats sleep when they’re bored or have little to no motivation to exercise mentally or physically. When there’s nothing to use their brain or body for, all animals turn to sleep. Cats need physical and mental exercise to keep their brain & body alive, for instance, physical exercise can be in the form of enrichment toys, cat trees, cat scratchers, treasure hunts; whilst mental exercise can be in the form of puzzles, KONGs, and interactive toys. It is always best to have a variety of toys/exercises for your cat to engage in because each activity challenges a different part of their brain/body, thereby resulting in overall well being.

2. Stress
Sometimes, sleep is used as a coping mechanism when cats are stressed or scared. Stress arises for many reasons, including but not limited to boredom, new environment, new people, multi-pet households, change in routine, litter box problems, separation anxiety and so on. It is important to identify what is stressing your cat and find ways to help reduce that stressor if not remove it altogether.

3. Nocturnal 
Cats tend to sleep more during the day than at night because they’re instinctively nocturnal. Whilst most house cats adapt to sleep schedules of their humans, there are some that continue to hold on to their wild roots. In such cases, you’d observe the cat sleep for long hours during the day and active at night through play, pacing, meowing etc. If you wish to change your cat’s sleeping pattern to fit yours, it’s best to keep them active during the day through enrichment toys and cat furniture. This way, they learn to adapt their hunting instincts for the day and keep rest & recharge for the night! 

4. Pain 
Cats are exceptionally good at masking/hiding their pain. Most of them tend to ‘sleep it off’ which is often seen as a change in sleeping pattern or excessive sleeping. In fact, some cats won’t show any other signs of pain other than excessive sleeping, hence it is best to seek immediate veterinary care when this happens. 

5. Saving energy 
Cats love saving energy! In the food chart, they’re predators and prey, which means energy is saved not only for hunting but also escaping/fighting. All cats conserve their energy through sleep and experience bursts of energy during hunts (play). Such sleep patterns aren’t a cause for concern and are purely instinctive.

6. Sickness 
Like humans, cats tend to sleep more when they are sick. If you find a change in sleeping patterns accompanied with discomfort, reduced appetite, lethargy, pain, vomiting, fever, diarrhoea, stiffness, and change in toileting habits; seek veterinary help immediately.

7. Disorders/Disease 
Obesity, endocrine diseases, cancer, abdominal obstructions etc can lead to a cat sleeping more than usual to ‘wear off the pain’. However, it is necessary to detect such cases early and rush to a veterinarian for prompt treatment. 

Sleeping helps to recharge & is extremely beneficial to boosting immunity. But, when your cat sleeps a bit too much, it starts to get concerning. Now that you know why your kitty might be sleeping more than necessary, you can seek veterinary care immediately. 

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