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How Much Do Cats Sleep?

Are You Wondering if Your Cat Is Sleeping Too Much?

By Mary Kearl. January 10, 2013 | See Comments

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How Much Do Cats Sleep?

Got a sleepy kitty on your hands and starting to get worried? Don't stress. Typically, healthy cats sleep 50 to 70 percent of the 24 hours in a day. Find out why.

Does your cat sleep the majority of the day? Most likely, you have nothing to worry about.

The reason to breathe easy and let sleeping cats lie undisturbed is because typically, healthy cats sleep 50 to 70 percent of the 24 hours in a day, with seniors and kittens catching Zzz’s up to 80 percent of the time.

Why Cats Sleep So Much

Cats do not have the same innate sleep patterns that we humans, and other animals, have--to go to bed when it’s dark and wake up when it’s light. In nature, during a given day, felines have to catch upwards of 20 small animals for prey. Cat naps--phases of light sleeping in which cats maintain awareness of their surroundings and can quickly spring into action if necessary--help replenish their energy between these hunts.

Domesticated cats’ sleep behaviors are very similar, which explains why your kitty may seem nocturnal or may seem like she or he is sleeping all day. In reality, your animal is likely doing a mix of both sleeping and waking during both day and night--and that’s perfectly normal.

As your cat gets older, it’s likely your pet will sleep more hours in the day and will tucker out more easily during play and other activities; however, in healthy cats, the increase in sleep needs should evolve gradually over time and to a degree to which might not even draw your attention.

When to Worry

A sudden drop in how much time your cat spends sleeping can signal trouble and should be followed by a visit to the vet.

Signs of weakness, lethargy, or declining energy can be an issue in older cats and could indicate a serious aging-related health condition, such as arthritis. Consult with your vet about such changes in your pet’s daily routines. 

More on Caring For Your Cat

Nutrition for Feeding a Senior Cat
Treating Cat and Dog Pain with NSAIDs
Cat Treats for Your Kitty's Every Need

This information is for informational purposes only and is not meant as a substitute for the professional advice of, or diagnosis or treatment by, your veterinarian with respect to your pet. It has, however, been verified by a licensed veterinarian for accuracy.

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