Why does my cat sleep on my neck?

Does your cat sleep on your neck or on your face? Are you worried about what to do after you found out your cat sleeping over your neck?

Don’t worry, I will explain everything you need to know about why cat sleeps on our neck and what to do when you find out.


Let me share my story.

One middle of the night, while I was in deep sleep, I felt something was over my neck. This was something unusual for me. When I opened my eyes, I found our cat was sleeping diagonally over my neck!

At first, I was like oh no, what is going on.

But why?

This made me dig more into the topic – cat sleeping on my neck.

I guess at some point in your life while living with your cat, you might have faced this situation or have been into one recently.

My cat used to sleep on arms before

Before She (our cat Eleven) used to slide into our blanket and sleep on my arms. This was her best sleeping zone. At some point, I even thought that I need to get a prosthetic arm just so that it would act as a pillow for my cat. 😀 Sometimes I used to feel tired giving her my arms as a pillow.

Why is my cat sleeping on my neck then?

Okay, enough of the background story, let’s enter into the main topic – the relation between your cat and her sleepover your neck.

After I noticed our cat napping on my neck, the next morning I did a bit of research over the internet. I made a Google search and checked into different forums to know if any other cat owners had a similar experience with their fur friend.

Here is what I found out the most common reasons to be. Even though the exact reason might not be the same for you but I assume you will be able to relate to some extent.

Cold weather – the main reason for a cat to find warmthy, lay and sleep on neck

Cats look for warm places to take nap and rest to stay away from cold weather.

We used to have a fire oven back in Nepal, and our cat used to sleep on top of the oven during the night. The oven was made of mud and the wood coal and ashes used to be still inside the oven keeping the oven warm for a longer time.

When the weather is cold or cats feel they need some warm places, they will start looking for the place they can rest and trust on.

And what else can be the most trustworthy than your owner’s company?

Our neck is out of the blanket

When we sleep making ourselves warm with a blanket, our head and neck part are exposed to the air most of the time. This is from where our body releases heat and your cat is clever to find the right spot to get the most warmth!

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So your cat simply sleeps on your neck for the warmth!

You keep moving your body during the night

Cats are clever!


have you noticed they secure themselves and prevent from being pressed by your body?

They do this by stretching their legs to your body and immediately gets alerted when you move your body.

Likewise, when a cat likes taking nap on your bed while you are still there, s/he would look for the most secure and safe place for him/ her.

As we humans sleep, we might be unconsciously moving or rolling our body during the sleep and our cat don’t want to get disturbed during their sleep, this is one of the prime reasons why the cat prefers sleeping on the neck as comparatively our neck and head part move less than our body and hands.

Your cat sleeps with you because s/ he loves you

Out of the other reasons, this is just simple as it is.

Your cat loves you the most and enjoys your company. For him/ her you are the favourite and want to be with you even during the night. S/ he doesn’t want to stay away from you and likes being with you all the time.

Your cat can smell you and likes your scent

While sleeping when the body might be covered most of the time, the neck and head are the two most accessible for our cat. Cat like to identify their owner with scent and often stay where they get the scent.

Your cat feels frightened, insecure or lonely

This might not be the major cause for you but you might want to know if your cat is feeling lonely, looking for company, or is afraid and frightened to stay in other parts of your house or with other family members.

Cat is hungry and needs your attention

Sometimes when a cat is hungry or is seeking attention and they find out their human friend is deeply asleep, they try waking up in different ways. In one of these efforts, your cat might be trying to wake you up coming close to your face and body.

What to do when you find your cat sleeping on your neck?

When your cat sleeps on your neck, even though there is no need to panic, it is best to make sure:

  • find out if cat’s body isn’t making your respiration difficult
  • make sure you are safe and cat’s body if it’s heavy for your neck and the head doesn’t make
  • once you assess the situation and consider yourself safe, it is okay to let cat sleep on your pillow so that you don’t get harmed
  • this is a common situation faced by many cat owners and most take it in the normal way
  • if you think something isn’t right with your cat and find the behaviour very unusual, it is best to take your cat to the pet clinic

How was your experience finding your cat sleeping on your neck or your face? Don’t forget to comment down.

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About the Author
Lakshman Basnet
Nepali Digital Media Marketer currently based in Adelaide, South Australia who apart from playing with his cat - Eleven, also enjoys developing web content, publishing blogs and YouTube videos in his free time.

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