Why Does My Cat Sleep With Me and Not My Husband?

Your cat may prefer to sleep with you rather than your husband or partner because of many factors: They love you, trust you, and feel safe with you. They like routine. They enjoy the warmth and comfort you provide. Lastly, cats tend to choose their favorite people.

Although my cat Reginald adores Nick, he always chooses to sleep with me, in fact, he’s never slept on Nick’s side of the bed before. So, I was curious and further investigated why cats choose who they sleep with and this is what I found in further detail…

They Feel Safe With You

Your cat loves you and trusts you. Most likely they feel safe and secure with you because you know and respect your cat’s boundaries. Perhaps you know he does not like being picked up or having his belly rubbed, and you build his trust by not doing those things. Most cats are independent and it is likely that your cat was the one that initiated the routine of sleeping with you.

For some people, they unknowingly disrespect their cat’s boundaries and pick them up to put them on the bed so that they can sleep there, however, that will train them to associate the bed with the negative act of being unwillingly picked up and moved, which can make them avoid your bed in the future.

Knowing your cat can trust you, they may simply feel that they can be protected in the case of a threat when they sleep with you. Cats usually sleep 15 hours a day, taking naps throughout the day, however they instinctually spend more time awake between dusk and dawn (the most opportunistic time to hunt is in the dark) so naturally when their ancestors slept during the broad daylight they are more visible and vulnerable. The vulnerability that cats and their ancestors feel while they sleep, may lead them to take comfort next to you.

Luckily, Reginald does not mind being picked up and took to sleeping with me as soon as I adopted him. It all depends on your cat’s personality- Some require more trust, and some are super social and dependent on people- in fact, different cat breeds can exhibit unique personalities and temperaments which you can read about here!

In addition to trust, they likely will chose a spot where they can make a quick getaway (due to instincts), and trust that you will not grab them or be too cloying.

Generally, most cats feel safe on an elevated surface where they have a good view of the “lay of the land” such as a bed.

Cats May Choose Their Favorite People

Cats May Choose Their Favorite People

In addition to respecting your cat’s boundaries, they most likely sleep with you, and only you, if you are their primary care taker. Your cat is associating you to one of their favorite past times- feeding time! Feeding, brushing, and playing with your cat creates a deep bond with them. They most likely know you are watching out for their well being and health, and they love you for it. Cats generally prefer the people who provide them safety and security.

Another thing most cats appreciate is routine. If you are consistent with your routine, and have set a predictable feeding schedule and bedtime, they are willing to wake up with you as well. In my case, I’m the one who feeds Reginald, so he prefers to be on my side of the bed waiting for me to open my eyes in anticipation of his favorite part of the morning- breakfast!

You may also be their favorite person because you are sensitive to what they like and don’t like. So your interactions with your cat appeals to them, and they are likely to come back for more! For example, I know Reginald does not like his feet, tail, and tummy touched, so I avoid petting those areas. His favorite spot to be petted and scratched is behind his ears, face, and a good scratch at the base of his tail, so I focus on those areas gently. This goes back to trust.

Other Reasons Your Cat Prefers Sleeping With You Over Your Partner

One theory as to why cats like to sleep with humans is because they enjoy the warmth, company, and being pet till they fall asleep. They also may enjoy the comforting rhythmic breathing, and rise and fall of your chest.

Your cat may chose to sleep with you over your partner because they are very sensitive and may prefer your sounds, smell, and touch. Here are some things your partner may do that can be off putting to your cat:

  • Your partner tosses and turns too much
  • Your partner snores
  • Your partner sweats and overheats during sleep. Although men and women maintain the same core body temperature, women tend to sweat less, and emit less heat.
  • Your partner might be stinky!
  • Your partner sleeps against the wall, and your cat does not want to feel trapped.

Why Do Cats Not Sleep with Men Easily?

Besides the fact that men may be too hot and sweaty to sleep with, other research suggests that cats may generally prefer women over men. A recent study on the bonds between cats and their humans was conducted by a team of researchers in Vienna, Austria. They studied 40 cat-human pairs and discovered that women tend to interact with their cat more than men do, and the cats initiated contact with women more than men (e.g. head butt, or jumping on lap). This stronger bond is formed because cats respond to the give and take of mutual attention, in other words, your cat received the attention they were seeking, so the next time you want their attention they will likely give the favor back. Women also tend to go down to their level more than men do.

Other studies show that the interactions between a cat-human bond mimics the interactions of a human-infant bond. It is proven that the attachment style of cats and even their cry is similar to that of pre-verbal infant.

Cats have deeply ingrained natural instincts from their wild cat ancestors. This drives them to choose their preferred people that can help them increase their survival. So naturally, they are going to choose to sleep with people they can trust to not hurt them and not cross their personal boundaries, as well as those that feed them and provide them security. By sleeping with you, its another way of showing you they love you!

Why Does My Cat Sleep With Me and Not My Husband- Final Thoughts

Cats are all different personality-wise. Some cats pick one person that they want to form a deep bond with, while other cats are social butterflies and love everybody. My cat Reginald thankfully loves everyone, even my other half, but he prefers to sleep with me every night, which causes some slight jealousy! This is because I’m the one that feeds him, cleans up after him, and let’s be honest- I interact with him more. I also get on his level, and treat him with respect, petting his favorite spots (but not too much!) All this builds trust, security, and a deep bond…making me the person he feels safe and happy to sleep with.

Does your cat have a favorite person to sleep with? If not, where does your cat typically sleep? Feel free to drop your experiences below!

Recent Posts