Should you sleep with cats in bed next to you?

Should you sleep with cats in bed next to you?

There’s nothing quite like curling up in bed with our feline friends. The warmth and companionship of sleeping next to your cat can make for a cosy and comfortable sleep. Some owners might even find drifting off to sleep easier, thanks to the soft fur and rhythmic purring. On the other hand, pets can sometimes disrupt your sleep with their movements, noises, and even snores. 

Before you curl up next to your cat, here are a few things to consider about having them sleep in the bed with you. 


Should your cat sleep in your bed?

There is no right or wrong answer when it comes to deciding to bunk with your cat. Instead, it should be about what makes you feel comfortable and relaxed. If you’re contemplating inviting them under the covers, here are a few things to consider:

  • Is your cat active at night? It’s common for cats to become active during the night, aligning with their natural hunting instincts. That activity can often look like playing with toys or meowing to get your attention.  This nocturnal behaviour can sometimes lead to disruptions to their owners. 
  • Are you sharing your bed with anyone else? If you sleep with a partner, remember that not everyone enjoys having a cat in the bed. Make sure you’re both on board with it first. 
  • How much room do you actually have? Do you like to stretch out across your queen bed? Or do you have room for a furry friend?
  • How clean is your cat? Some cats may carry parasites like fleas, mites, and ticks, which can cause allergies or skin irritation, so keeping your cat healthy and bedding clean and tidy is important.

    Why do cats sleep with you?
    Enjoying a good cuddle isn’t unique to us humans - there are plenty of reasons why your feline friend loves to curl up next to you. For some kitties, sleeping with their humans can help them feel safe and secure, while also offering them extra warmth. Sleeping next to you is a sign that your cat trusts you to protect them from predators. For others, sleeping in your bed is a way to mark their territory, showing that they’re the owner of the house. 

    Why does my cat sleep on me?
    Some cats are quite content to curl up next to you. Others will take cuddling to a whole new level, plonking themselves right on top of you during the night. “Cat napping" isn't just a phrase, it's how cats sleep - with one ear open, ready to attack or defend themselves at a moment's notice. For a cat, deep sleep can be a vulnerable time, so sleeping on their human gives them a sense of security. It's just like when you see a kitten pilling on top of each other – they’re looking for that same feeling of safety.

    The pros and cons of your cat sleeping in bed
    Your bedroom should be a space for relaxing and resting. So, whether you want to share your space or not is all down to what you find comfortable.

    The benefits of bunking with your feline friend

    Some added benefits of sleeping with a cat are: 
  • Decreased stress. Having your furry friend next to you can help relieve stress, helping you to doze off better. Plus, their purring and sleep noises can act as the perfect white noise!
  • Extra bonding time. Snuggle sessions in bed are one way to spend some quality time with your pet. 
  • Falling asleep easier. The presence of your cat next to you helps promote a feeling of safety - making sure that you feel like you’re not falling asleep alone.

    The drawbacks of sharing with your cat

    Sleeping with your feline friend doesn’t come without some drawbacks. Here are a few things that may sway you into sleeping separately: 
  • Sleep disruption. Cats are nocturnal creatures, so right while you’re yawning and ready to hit the sack, your moggy might be coming to life, prepared to pounce on you every time you wiggle your foot.  
  • Lack of space. Cats love to hog the bed, so if you like to stretch out, you might find the real estate already taken.  
  • Allergies and asthma. You may find that these symptoms can be aggravated from your kitty’s fur or allergens in their skin and saliva.

    Tips for sharing your bed with your cat

    If you’re keen to share your bed with a cat, here are some ways to make it more comfortable:
  • Upsize your mattress, so you both have plenty of space. No bed hogs allowed!
  • Take cues from your cat. If they’re cuddly and love to sleep, they’re probably a great companion. If they prefer to be off doing their own thing, convincing them to stay put might be hard.
  • Play with your cat right before bedtime to tire them out. Try and do it at the same time each night, so they associate it as part of their bedtime routine.  It’s a good idea to feed them before bed too, unless you want to be woken by a hungry cat.
  • Keep a cat bed in your room so they have another alternative during the night - or you have a place to send them to if they’re being mischievous.
  • Launder your quilts and linen regularly to keep the bed a safe space for you both to sleep.
  • Use mattress and pillow protectors to create a barrier, preventing mites from entering your mattress and bedding. This can also help reduce allergens. 

Everyone has different sleep needs and preferences, and what works for one person (or cat!)  may not work for another. The most important thing is that you get a good night's sleep, whether or not you choose to let your cat sleep in bed with you. Curious to learn more about sleep? We’ve got a whole heap of handy tips and tricks on our blog

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