Why Do Cats Sleep At The Foot of the Bed?
All cat owners may wonder why do cats sleep at the foot of the bed? While cats have the reputation of being aloof and only wanting affection when it suits them, cat owners will often tell a different story. The cold, narcissistic, needy cat that so many people visualize is often not the experience that you and I, as cat owners and true cat lovers have.
Even if your cat doesn’t beg for attention, it can be evident that they have claimed you as their human by their need for close proximity to you. This simply means that they like to be around you. They might like making biscuits in your lap, they might slink back and forth between your feet as you’re trying to get things done around the house, or they may simply be at ease when you’re around.
There is a wide variation in the affection we receive from cats. For example, my blue silver Maine Coon named Big Ben loves belly rubs while he’s lying on his back. This activity, which would leave many cats nipping and scratching to right themselves, and frantic to get away, is like heaven for him. For this cuddly creature, there is no better show of affection, and he can’t get enough of it.
In addition to belly rubs, Big Ben also likes to sleep at the foot of the bed. With him being 26 pounds, it's like having a toddler in bed. I keep telling my husband that we're going to have to upgrade to King Size bed to accommodate our Maine Coons. In the winter when its chilly we put an electric blanket on our bed. On those cold nights, ALL of the cats are on the bed. Imagine over 90 pounds of cats all sleeping at the foot of the bed! If the covers come off for some reason, it's like weight lifting in the middle of the night trying to recover the blankets.
Do Cats Sleep At The Foot of the Bed to Bond with Owners?
There is debate over why cats seem to claim their humans. Is it simply out of territorial instinct or do they really bond with their owners? It’s the classic question of nature versus nurture. There are two main opinions on the matter. The first is the concept that the cat makes the rules. Many owners can attest to how their cat has changed the behavioral dynamics in the home with their quirks or specific needs. Often, it is true that the cat rules the roost. They can stand up to even the largest and burliest of dogs, they can steal their snacks, their beds, their spot on the couch, whatever they want really, and the cat easily establishes dominance with other animals and even some humans. Who are we to think we’re any better than the dog?
What about your comfy bed? You only thought it was your bed. Actually, because the cat makes the rules, he or she has claimed that as their bed. The cat is just nice enough to let you sleep there sometimes. They want things their way and once they’ve decided what that is, there really is no other option. They tell you when to feed them, when to show them affection and when to leave them alone. For all intents and purposes, the cat is the boss.
Are they really the boss though? Maybe, instead of being a feline dictator, your cat simply loves you and wants to be near you. They're just like any creature looking for attention. Sleeping at the foot of the bed is a show of affection. Cats sleep with their owners is because they love you! Even more important than the fact that they love their owner is the fact that if they feel safe sleeping at your feet, it means they TRUST you. Maine Coons are caring and loving creatures who, just like every other entity on the planet, just want to be loved. Read this article to learn more about How to Care For Your Maine Coon.
Cats are Vulnerable While Sleeping
The other thing to remember is that cats are their most vulnerable when they’re sleeping. This is why, in the wild, you’ll find cats, whether they are truly wild or feral domestic cats, sleeping in secluded, hard to reach areas. They will recluse themselves to a small space, often with limited entry points, where they can feel secure enough to let their guard down.
In our homes, however, there isn’t as much of a need for that. We as the human are granted the important position of Cat Protector. After all, they know that we provide food, water, affection, and shelter. For that reason, they feel the most at ease when they know we are nearby. Besides, if we feel safe enough to sleep in a particular space, then why wouldn’t the cat? The foot of the bed provides the perfect balance of closeness and distance; warmth and room to breathe; comfort and security without neediness.
The foot of the bed allows the cat to feel safe, be close to their trusted owner and still maintain that level of independence that is so important to our furry felines. There is no better compliment or profession of love you can receive from your feline friend than that, at the end of the day, they curl up at the foot of your bed. Or hell, maybe they just like your ned because it's soft and cozy. That would make a lot more sense! If I were a cat, I choose to snuggle up in a warm bed with my hoomans any day.
Maybe You Need to Get a Bigger Bed
With a house full of Maine Coons, I can attest to the fact that they love to sleep on the bed with me and the hub. Not just at the foot of the bed, but by our side, in between us, and even on our heads. It's all fun and games until you try to pull the covers up over your shoulder but there's 80 pounds of cats weighing down your blanket. It's no joke that when the Maine Coons are full grown, they take up as much space in the bed as a toddler! I keep telling my husband that we're going to have to buy a King Size bed to make room for the Coonies. 😛
Does your kitty sleep at the foot of the bed? Leave me a comment and tell me all about it! Or MAYBE they sleep on your head???