Why Do Cats Cover Their Face When They Sleep?

By Phil / December 28, 2019
Why Do Cats Cover Their Face When They Sleep

Wondering, why do cats cover their face when they sleep? Want to know if they are trying to tell you something?

Maybe they are shielding their eyes from the sun. Or, making sure they are all toasty and cozy. It might even be that it’s the most comfortable position for them.

If you’re trying to decipher what your cats sleeping position means – here are 6 reasons that explain why most cats sleep with their paws covering their faces:

They’re Keeping Their Nose (And Ears) Warm

Kitties like to keep nice and warm when they’re sleeping, and who can blame them. You may have observed your cat sleeping somewhere warm, like near a heater, or on a sunny window sill to get some heat.

They’ll also curl up in a ball to retain heat. Wrap their tails around their back legs, and cover their faces with their paws. Anything they can do to keep a little extra warmth in they’ll intuitively do if needed.

If you’re concerned your cat is chilly, please read – ideal indoor temperature for cats in the winter.

It’s the Comfiest Position for Them

Sometimes we can over analyze cat’s behaviors and draw some complex conclusions – only to find they are just doing what works best for them at that time.

My cats sleep in what looks like some of the weirdest positions sometimes. But they wouldn’t do it if it wasn’t comfortable for them. Maybe your cat needed a stretch, or just likes the feeling of holding their face.

The bottom line is that however they are sleeping, it might just be because it’s nice and comfy for them. So, don’t disturb them!

They’re Blocking out the Light (Take a Hint)

Why does my cat hide his face when sleeping

No one likes having the sun or a light shining on their faces when they’re trying to sleep. Cats are no different. In fact, their eyes are very sensitive to light, so even a small amount might be disturbing them.

It’s only natural, therefore, that they will try and cover their eyes. Some cats will sleep face down, some are able to curl into a ball and use their bushy tails. While some will try and cover their faces with their paws.

If you can help them out by turning off a light or directing away from them, do them a favor. If it’s the middle of the day and they’re in the window sill, well, they have a lesson to learn,

It Feels Safe and Secure for Them

Cats like to feel safe and secure when they’re sleeping. It’s an innate behavior seen by wild cats, and a behavior domestic cats also display.

This is why they’ll often find somewhere high up to sleep. Or where they can clearly see the entry and exit points to a room.

When a cat sleeps covering their faces, it tells us that they feel safe and secure. This is actually a big deal from a behavioral standpoint, they’re letting their guard down a little. Do your part by not startling them or giving them reason to feel threatened.

They’re Trying to Block out Noise

Cats have exceptional hearing. If you get annoyed by noise in your home while you’re trying to sleep, just think how annoying it must be for your cat.

I not saying you should feel too sorry for them. After all, they do get to spend about 16 hours a day trying to sleep, and I’m sure you’re not deliberately being loud. But still, they need a little peace and quiet sometimes.

If there is some background noise, this might explain why your cat is covering their face and ears while sleeping. This is certainly the case for one of my cats, she’s always in the living room and tries to block out the noise from the TV while sleeping next to me.

It’s Just How They Crashed Out

If you take a good look at your cat sleeping with their paws over their face, does it look like they crashed out while grooming? Or, maybe they were stretching out and chilling.

I was watching my cat the other night. She was actually cleaning between her toes, you know how they bite at the fur in their claws?

I looked away for a while, and when I looked back she was sleeping face down on her paw. Almost like she had been grooming her paw and just transitioned into sleeping.

So, this can easily account for a reason why your cat may be sleeping covering their face.

Why Does Your Cat Sleep Covering Their Face?

Has this helped you better understand why your cat sleeps in this position? Or any of the other interesting and cute positions cats choose while getting some quality shuteye sometimes.

If you have any further insight into cats’ sleeping positions and what they mean, I’d love to hear about it. Just drop me a comment below, thanks.

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