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

Written by

Amy Sawy

Veterinarian. DVM


Joseph M. Plummer

Veterinarian, DVM, MVZ

why does my cat sleep pressed up against me

Did you ever wonder why sometimes your cats sleep on you peacefully when you are watching a movie or snuggling in bed? In this article, we will answer the Reddit question, “why does my cat sleep pressed up against me?”

Cat sleeps pressed up against you because of some reasons. This cat’s behavior signifies that either cat loves you, feels secure, or wants to protect you from danger.

Reasons for My Cat Sleep Pressed Up Against Me

My cats often lay on me, and there are many explanations for it. In this article, we have listed the reasons for this unusual behavior.

1. Your furry friend trusts you

One of the reasons why your cats sleep pressing against you is because they trust you and feel safer around you. Cats sleep with their alertness still on, but if they sleep curled up beside you, this means reduced alertness.

This habit provides a meaning of trust that they give to you. At this time, they are most vulnerable. But since you are by their side, they do not feel the threat or the need to be alert at all times.

2. Your feline friend wants your body warmth

Cats love anything warm so sleeping next to you is their way to maintain the body temperature they want. Especially when the weather is cold, cats tend to sleep near anything that will bring them more warmth—including you!

This explains why they fall asleep near the windows or even on top of your laptop.

3. Your cat marks you as their territory

Cats are territorial creatures, so when they sleep on top of you or any other part of your body, this action is them leaving off their scent on you.

This is their way of marking you as theirs and letting other cats know that you belong to them.

4. Your pet is showing you affection and love

Sleeping next to you means that they are showing you their affection and love. Same as dogs, cats also form stronger bonds with their owners by spending time with them, even during sleep.

They do this to give appreciation to the people who take care of them and give them their necessities.

5. They need some comfort during stress

Cats sleep next to you because they are stressed and want your comfort. If you notice any stress or anxious behavior from them, give them their needed attention and care by head pressing and caressing them gently.

Should I Let My Cat Sleep With Me?


Now that you know the answer to “why does my cat sleep on me?”. It is now your decision whether you will let your cat do it or not.

Sleeping with cats brings benefits, including reducing your stress hormones and increasing your dopamine, also known as the happy hormones.

Also, both you and your cat can feel a sense of security, comfort, and closeness if your cat sleeps near you.

On the other hand, there are risks as well to letting cats sleep with you. Some think that cats might bring contaminants onto the bed or that they might injure their cat during bedtime.

Regardless of these reasons, it is up to you if you want to sleep with your cat.

To discover more what are the common positions cats make while sleeping, you can refer to cat sleeping positions chart below:

Could My Cat Hurt Me While I Sleep?


Most cats do not hurt you intentionally while you are sleeping. They might see you as playing with them when you move during your sleep. This makes them bite you or scratch you lightly.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)


Do cats feel secure when they sleep next to you?

Absolutely! When cats sleep beside you, this is a good sign about your relationship with them. This means that they are secure enough to lower their guard around you.

Could my cat get injured sleeping pressed against me?

One of the most common worries of cat owners is whether they could injure their indoor cats while sleeping at night. The answer is no.

Compared to humans, when cats are asleep, their senses are still alert. They usually have a light sleep mode, prompting them to be still ready to either attack prey or defend themselves if their surroundings call them to do so.

Thus, if you push them accidentally, they will be able to move out of the way.

What are the common sleeping positions for cats?

Cat sleeping positions chart provide information as to where and how your cats usually sleep. This chart includes cats sleeping on top of you, sideways, tucked in, and belly up.

Why does my cat sleep pressed up against my legs?

You might be asking, “why does my cat sleep between my legs at night?” This cat behavior indicates that they seek comfort from you. Since you take the role of their mom, they are now familiar with the comfort and safety you could give them.

From there, they would want to seek it from time to time, especially when you peacefully sleep.

Why does my cat lay on my chest?

Cats tend to lay on their owners’ chests, which could mean many reasons, and usually, this is a positive sign. It might be that your cat is expressing love and saying to you that you are their favorite human.

Another reason is that they are attracted to the sound they hear from your chest. It could be that the rhythmic sound of your heartbeat or steady breathing comforts them.

Why does my cat sleep on my hand?

Your cat sleeps on your hand probably because they want to feel your body’s warmth and feel secure sleeping on it. Regardless, this is a good indication that your cat feels closer to you.

Why does my cat sleep on my stomach and on my back at night?

Aside from the warmth that your stomach gives your cat, they sleep on it because they feel cozy and safe doing so. For your cat, your stomach is a soft, warm bed that is a good place to sleep on. This only means they enjoy your company and the bed you can offer.

Why does my cat sleep behind my knees or at my feet?

Cats feel protected and secure when they sleep behind their knees. Since behind the knees offer a sense of comfort and warmth to your cat, it makes them attracted to lay on their paws and sleep on them.

Cats sleep at your feet because they have the urge to protect you. Aside from cats being territorial, they are also known for being protective.

Why does my cat sleep in my arms like a baby ?

Just like cats sleeping behind your knees, a good sleep place for them would be your arms too. Sleeping in your arms offers them comfort, and it makes them feel safe and secure like with their mother.

In fact, your kitten will have their peak socialization weeks at 12-week age, and it’s likely to constantly sneak into your hand to fall into a deep sleep.

Why does my cat push its head up against me?

Your cat pushing its head against you could mean that they are expressing its affection and love to you. It is their way to catch your attention and give them some cuddles.

It could also mean marking you as their territory by putting their scent on your skin.

Do cats protect you when you sleep?

Yes! Cats tend to have an instinct to protect you, especially when they choose to sleep next to you. It means that they value you as their person and do not want anything to harm you.

Nevertheless, a cat sleeping beside you could mean both things—they want to protect you and your protection.

Final thoughts

Thus, in this article, we have answered the question, “why does my cat sleep pressed up against me?” and provided various reasons too. We have also learned that these reasons just indicate that our relationship with our cats is growing and improving due to these sleeping habits that they portray.

Although there are disadvantages of letting your cat sleep with you especially if you are a restless sleeper, the benefits outweigh these cons.

Nevertheless, what matters is you having a good night’s sleep and at the same time, keeping your cat happy.

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