Tips and tricks for understanding your kitty’s sleep needs.
There’s a reason someone once coined the phrase “catnap.” Cats are great, relatively low-maintenance pets, and kittens are known for their cute, playful ways. But cats also LOVE to spend the day snoozing. How much sleep is too much? When do you know when sleep is masking an underlying health issue? Read on to learn how to manage your cat’s sleep habits, and when too much of a good thing is no good.
How to Catch Purrrrfect Zzzs
As tempting as it is, it may not always be a smart idea to let your young cat sleep on your bed. Sure they may be fluffy, cuddly companions, but developing healthy sleep habits while your kitten is young is key.
A great option is a cat tree. Cats enjoy being up high, and this offers them a separate space to rest, without confining them. If your bed is the only option (or the only one they seem to like), designate a space for your kitty and reinforce that this her space to rest. A soft blanket placed on the edge of the bed can help emphasize this tactic.
Whatever approach you decide, just be sure your cat can make it on and off the bed, or up to the cat tree, without injuring herself. Cats are usually stronger and more agile around six months, making it less likely for them to injure themselves while jumping on and off.
How Much Is Too Much?
You might be surprised to know that a kitten may sleep most of the day away. For a newborn kitten, up to 22 hours could be routine! As your kitten grows, they’ll need less shut-eye, but don’t be alarmed if your young cat (up to six months) still averages 16-20 hours of sleep each day. If they’re not eating or playing, chances are there are snoozing. Young kittens need proper rest in order to grow and development into healthy, happy cats. While plenty of sleep is normal, not every cat will need the same amount. So if you do have a cat that is a bit more active, there’s no need to fret.
Sweet Dreams Are Made of These
Like people, each cat’s sleep needs are unique. There are three types of sleep: the catnap, night sleep and deep sleep. A catnap is generally a light snooze—even the faintest sound can wake your kitty. Night sleep is a bit heavier, and deep sleep is the state in which your cat may have dreams of catnip and chasing squirrels. Deep sleep can occur during the day, as can night sleep. Generally speaking, the more relaxed your cat appears to be while snoozing, the deeper the sleep.
Sleep is a great way to recharge your body and mind, and it’s no different for your furry friend. Establishing healthy sleep habits from day one is a sure way to ensure a long, healthy relationship between you and your companion!