Ever wonder why your cat sleeps on your pillow?
For such a seemingly mundane question, there actually are some intriguing answers!
If you’re wondering what your cat is trying to tell you and if this strange cat habit means anything, keep reading!
We’ll talk about six potential reasons for kitty choosing your pillow as his favorite spot to snooze.
6 Reasons Why Your Cat Sleep on Your Pillow
Cats choose a lot of strange places to have a nap. Some felines like to curl on their owner’s feet, while others prefer to cuddle in a closed cupboard.
But how do cats choose their resting place? That’s the question, right?
It’s not always about comfort because cats tend to ignore their cozy beds in favor of a simple box or a forgotten book.
Safety and warmth also play a role and probably other factors that only cats know about.
While it’s hard to understand the feline’s mind, I’ve got some pretty good guesses why your cat wants to share a pillow.
Let’s unravel this mystery together.
#1 You’re Warm
Probably one of the reasons why you find your cat on your pillow is that your kitty is seeking a warm place to nap.
Cats don’t like to be cold and usually find the warmest places to sleep, especially during cold winter days. But do you know why?
Cats run warmer than humans with a body temperature of around 102 F.
Cuddling to an external heat source makes it easier for your cat’s body to maintain warmth because it doesn’t have to work that hard.
Sleeping in a warm place also saves your cat energy that they can use for more important things, such as running wild around the house or playing all the time.
During the night, you’re probably the warmest place in the house because your body generates a lot of heat.
So, it makes sense that your cat will come to nap beside you.
Moreover, not all felines like to sleep beneath blankets or in covered cat beds because it makes them feel trapped.
Your pillow is the next logical choice.
#2 You Toss in Bed
Does your cat usually sleep in your bed? Then they might prefer your pillow because you move too much when you’re asleep.
Cats aren’t stupid, and they know that you can easily squish them if you roll over them during sleep.
So, if you tend to toss and turn, your cat might think that they’re safer on the pillow than sleeping on top of you.
Moreover, you might kick your cat accidentally in your sleep if they nap close to your legs.
#3 I’m Seeking Safety
We might have “domesticated” cats a long time ago, but our felines still have predatory instincts.
In the wild, cats look for a secure sleeping spot away from predators to lower their chances of being attacked while sleeping.
Domestic cats still do the same.
That’s why you might notice that your indoor cats like to sleep somewhere high, dark, or hard to reach, for example, in the back of the wardrobe or up on the bookshelves.
When your cat sleeps on your pillow, it’s a sign of great trust because your cat relies on you to protect them if something were to happen.
You’d never see a cat sleeping near someone that makes them nervous or anxious.
#4 I Love You
Cats have one constant rule in their book – they don’t spend time with people they don’t like.
They might accept food and bribes from such people, but they’re quick to turn their backs.
So, when your cat chooses to sleep next to your head, it’s a sign of love.
Your feline is trying to tell you that they enjoy being in your company and that you make them happy.
Some kitties might also try to express their affection by purring, nuzzling, or licking your hair while you’re sleeping.
You should take it as a compliment because it means you’ve got a strong bond with your kitty.
#5 You’re Mine
Do you have more than one cat in the house? Then you might notice that only one of your cats sleeps on your pillow.
In these cases, we might be talking a jealous cat, showing the rest of the household who the boss is.
Cats might not be pack animals as dogs, but they have a hierarchy and might fight to establish their dominance.
That’s why it’s important to introduce new cats carefully to avoid turf wars and cat fights.
Moreover, cats have special glands in their paws and cheeks that they use to leave their scent all over your body.
That’s how they show other felines that you’ve already got a cat and that they should keep away from you.
Cats can be jealous of many things, not only other cats. New additions to your household, such as a baby, a dog, or a boyfriend/girlfriend might wake your cat’s territorial instinct.
You’d better reassure your cat, or they might start picking fights and misbehaving because they feel ignored.
#6 I’m Anxious
Another reason why your cat might start sleeping on your pillow is stress.
When your feline is feeling insecure, it might stick to your side because your kitty thinks of you as a security blanket.
It doesn’t take much to make a cat anxious. New furniture, a trip to the vet, or a bath are all stressful events for your cat.
But the bigger the change, the more affected your cat is going to be.
Most felines tend to hide somewhere dark and small until the “bad thing” is over, but some might become clingy and more affectionate than usual.
If you think that your cat is under stress, you should pamper them for a while so that they feel safe and sound again.
You can also talk to your vet about it if your kitty is too nervous or becomes aggressive.
As you can see, cats might snuggle on your pillow for a lot of reasons.
The good news is that felines often change their sleeping spots, so your cat will probably move to another area in a couple of weeks.
But if you aren’t comfortable with your cat napping next to you, you should keep your cat out of the bedroom from the beginning.
Banning your cat from the bed afterward can be hard because cats hate it when they don’t have access to their favorite spot.
What do you think about these reasons why your cat sleeps on your pillow? Does your kitty ever snuggle next to you? Share your opinion in the comment section.
Olfa knows how to get things done and has a keen business sense that others admire. She’s always on the go, coming up with new ideas! Her ability to anticipate the needs of her readers and deliver information that they want is what makes CatVills such a success. She loves cuddling her cat Picaciu. He is her inspiration.
One of my cats would love to sleep on me, by my side or above my head, he was a black tom but loved his cuddles
I became a cat step mummy 3 years ago, I’m allergic so this is a problem. But the cat was here long before me so I just have to be careful.
This is really interesting because I honestly thought his need to sleep on my pillow was in a bid to kill me off! Seriously, he’s given up trying to trip me on the stairs so I thought his pillow sleeping was his next choice!
I feel that despite my allergy I need to let him show his love to me!
Speak to your doctor.
Antihistamines like Fexofenadine, Loratidine etc can reduce or entirely mitigate allergies like this, and make being owned by a cat even more lovely.
i remember my childhood cat tessa she was a he but we thought he was a female when we got him as a kitten and never changed his name. he would always sleep at the top of my bed around my neck, his purring in my ear got annoying though
This is really interesting, I have to admit I didn’t realise there were reasons why a cat would choose their owners pillows to snooze on.
This is really interesting. My aunty has a cat who sleeps on her pillow. When we move to my mums we will have a cat so i’m going to keep this in mind.
My cat likes to sleep behind the back of my knees when I am in bed. My mum’s cay loves sleeping on your head!
Mine would only ever sleep next to me on my bed. I don’t think I’d have been happy if it slept on the pillow although when I wasn’t in bed as the bed was made it couldn’t get to it.
I don’t have a cat but know a lot of friends who do and heard them mentioning that their cats sleeps on their pillow
Ooooh, this is really interesting. Animals are fascinating aren’t they?
I know so many people with cats who say they sleep on their pillows.
I don’t have a cat but my best friend has had cats for years and this is something I have always wondered! Cats are such interesting creatures.
If I toss in my sleep, my cat scratches me and growls.
Taking the cats to the vet is traumatic not just for the cats, but for me and the vet as well, because my cats turn to men eating tigers.
I think another reason why cats like sleeping on pillows is they like soft material that reminds them of their mother’s soft fur.