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Do Cats Dream? Exploring the Secret Realm of Cat’s Dreams

do cats dream

You’ve seen your cat lying up around the home throughout different hours of the day, enjoying a cat nap. But did you ever wonder do cats dream? And If they do, what do they dream about? Cats sleep 16 hours a day on average, which is twice as much as humans. Cats require sleep in order to regain energy and maintain excellent health. The felines sleep essentially for the same reasons as humans do. 

Do Cats Have Dreams?

It’s one thing to watch a cat curled up on a chair with its eyes closed. It’s quite another to assume that felines can dream and have bright imaginations. However, it has been discovered that cats can dream. According to research, all animals dream. The mammalian brain needs to organize and order pictures from the day during sleep. Scientists have determined from analyzing rats’ brains that the degree of brain activity when solving puzzles or going through mazes is similar to the level of activity observed during REM (rapid eye movement) sleep – the deepest state of sleep – proving that they dream.

Cat Sounds

When pet owners learn about their furry companions’ sleeping habits, they quickly realize that cats are not always silent creatures when they are deep asleep. While sleeping, a cat will twitch, stretch, snort, and make strange noises. In cats, the muscular movements linked with REM sleep are comparable to how people behave while dreaming. 

Cat’s Sleeping Cycle

Cats have two different sleeping phases. REM sleep and non-REM sleep or deep sleep. 

REM sleep

There are two forms of sleep: REM sleep and non-REM sleep. The sleeper’s eyes move quickly during REM, and the brain’s activity is similar to that of an awake state. This is when dreams happen. Young kittens spend more time in REM than older animals, probably because they are overwhelmed with new information every day and need to absorb it all.

Michael Jouvet did research in the 1960s that demonstrated that cats experience REM in the same way as people do. As a result, it is extremely possible that they dream as well.

Jouvet demonstrated in the study that cats had the same low voltage electrical activity in their brains as humans, as well as the twitching and relaxed muscles associated with REM sleep.

Cats have shorter sleep cycles than humans. Cats have three times the amount of REM sleep as humans. They enter REM periods every 25 minutes, whereas humans do so every 90 minutes. So your cat may be dreaming even when they are sleeping. Because all animals have somewhat similar brain construction, dreaming is most likely universal.

Deep Sleep or Non-REM Sleep

If your cat is not in REM sleep, they are in deep sleep. Deep sleep is when their bodies restore themselves. Dreams that occur during REM sleep are often longer, more imaginative, and more detailed. Non-REM dreams tend to be shorter reenactments of the day.

cat sleeping

What Do Cats Dream About

People dream about their life, and cats seem to do the same. We can’t ask them what they dream about, so we have to assume that they, like us, dream about their day. For example, if they walked outdoors and saw a bird and another kitty buddy, those are likely the pictures that are running through their minds as they sleep. Maybe they’re dreaming about their owner and their tasty meal. 

Do Cats Have Bad Dreams?

There is no conclusive proof that cats experience nightmares or bad dreams. However, many pet owners have reported that their cats occasionally wake up frightened or anxious. Animals, like people, must process stress and trauma, and dreams are one method to do it.

It is normally better not to wake up your sleeping cat if it is twitching or making little movements. For starters, this is rather unpleasant for your cat. Additionally, your cat may bite or scratch you as a result of a defensive instinct when they wake.

Do Cats Sleep Well?

Cats, like their owners, may have difficulty sleeping and reaching the crucial REM stage. Cats can suffer from both insomnia and sleep apnea. Sleep apnea is a disorder that impairs your cat’s breathing when it is sleeping, causing its nervous system to be on high alert.

If you suspect your cat is having sleeping issues, consult your veterinarian. Extra playtime, as well as a larger meal close to sleep, may be beneficial.

Do Cats Snore?

Yes. Cats do not snore as commonly as dogs, but it can happen. But why do cats snore? Overweight cats are more likely to snore as they develop extra fat around their neck. You may have discovered that cats have some unusual sleeping habits, and some positions can cause snoring. Certain cat breeds snore more than others. Because of the form of their faces, flat-faced cat breeds such as Persians and the Himalayas are more prone to snoring.

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