Why Does My Cat Purr in Its Sleep?

Cats purr for a variety of reasons – for example, because they feel good, but also to calm down in stressful or threatening situations. Some kitties even make a cute noise while they sleep. However, this is usually not a cause for concern, explain veterinarians.

Some people snore in their sleep – much to the chagrin of those around them. And cats can snore too. Especially if they have a flat head, are overweight, or lie in certain positions.

Some kitties not only snore while they sleep, but they also purr. And the explanation for this is actually pretty sweet: Because then they are probably dreaming. When cats reach REM, they can dream too. And that, explains veterinarian Claudine Sievert to the magazine “Popsugar”, could be expressed in purring.

Cat Purrs for Various Reasons

But that doesn’t mean that cats that purr in their sleep have good dreams. “Cats purr to express different feelings, not just joy or relaxation. A cat can purr in its sleep because of a good or bad dream, ”explains Dr. Sievert. For example, if a kitty is having a nightmare, purring can help relieve stress or anxiety.

Even if a cat is injured or in pain, it can purr in its sleep, explains veterinarian Shadi Ireifej. “Just like people who have to sleep overnight over a problem or who are tired from an illness or injury, sick or injured cats can do the same.”

Nevertheless, the nocturnal purring can of course also express positive feelings. Because a cat that feels so safe and good that it sleeps soundly can purr in its sleep as well. You can also tell when the cat is lying on its back and presenting its stomach, says Shadi Ireifej. Because this shows the kitty her vulnerable side – a clear sign that she feels comfortable and does not sense any danger.

Mary Allen

Written by Mary Allen

Hello, I'm Mary! I've cared for many pet species including dogs, cats, guinea pigs, fish, and bearded dragons. I also have ten pets of my own currently. I've written many topics in this space including how-tos, informational articles, care guides, breed guides, and more.

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