Observing your pet kitty while they sleep is adorable and relaxing, but many people are concerned and wonder why cats twitch when sleeping.
If you notice your cat doing this and are concerned that something is amiss, don’t be. Cats, like humans, are thought to have dreams when sleeping, and twitching might be a normal response to their nocturnal excursions.
We’ll answer some relevant questions about this topic in this post, as well as delve a little deeper into your cat’s dreaming patterns and what you may learn from them.
Reasons Why Cat Twitching In Their Sleep
When scientists studied a group of rats in a lab, science finally caught up with cat parents’ understanding. Scientists discovered that animals, including cats, dream by studying brain waves in rats while they went about their waking world chores and then witnessing the same sort of brain waves during sleep.
Because cats sleep up to 16 hours a day and are considerably more likely than humans to enter REM sleep, you should expect to witness sleep twitching in a cat that is prone to it. It’s fine if your elder cat doesn’t twitch very often. Twitching due to a lack of sleep is only a worry for very young cats.
Experts believe that newborn and young kittens’ near-constant twitching during sleep is related to their bodies’ rapid growth. The kitten’s body is priming the pumps, so to speak, in preparation for more intense activity like walking, running, pouncing, and playing. Twitching is beneficial to the nervous system’s development, so don’t be frightened if your kitten twitches frequently.
Sleep twitching in kittens is often more prominent than in adult cats. There’s a reason behind this. “Activated sleep” occurs in newborns and young kittens. A kitten may thrash its tail around, whine, wriggle, or jerk during triggered slumber. It’s all part of nature’s plan for kittens to build muscle power and control, even when they’re sleeping.
A sleeping kitten should never be disturbed. It’s critical that they sleep until they’re finished and then wake up naturally. Kittens can’t grow strong and healthy if they don’t get enough rest. This is especially true for kittens who are still in active slumber, such as newborns and very young kittens. It’d be like skipping leg day at the gym every week; you’d never receive a full exercise, leaving a weak and undeveloped area of your body.
Because REM sleep is so crucial for healthy bodies and brains, yet cats receive so little of it, you might be wondering how you might assist your cat get more. That, it turns out, is a rather straightforward process.
Provide your cat with a variety of places to slumber that are comfy, dark, and warm. Kitty cubes, scratching posts with hiding spaces, and even window seats to get some sun are popular among cats. My cats like to cuddle up beneath my covers on my bed, so when I wake up each day, I always construct a tiny tent for them to burrow inside.
If your house is cold or drafty, a cat-safe heating pad may be added to a kitty cube or a cat bed.
Although the causes for your cat’s twitching during sleep are perfectly safe and common, the twitching might be due to something more serious, such as seizures. Seizures can induce twitches, which are less common but nonetheless possible.
It’s tough to tell the difference between typical twitches and seizures. Twitches vary from seizures in that seizures affect the whole body rather than just sections of it. Twitches, for example, usually affect only the tail, leg, or a single region of the body, whereas seizures cause the entire body to shake.
Seizures are frequently accompanied by a variety of additional symptoms. Seizures can be detected by changes in your cat’s eating, grooming, and activity.
Itchy skin caused by fleas, allergies, matted fur, or a skin infection might be indicated by twitching during sleep, followed by awakening and quickly grooming.
If you notice your cat twitching their ears, it might be a sign of ear mites or an ear infection.The twitching may be accompanied by scratching or rubbing of the ears. Ear mites and infections can lead to a build-up of waxy material in the ears, so keep an eye on your pet’s ears.
Is it common for cats to twitch while they’re awake?
When a fly lands on your cat’s skin, it’s natural to observe it twitch. It’s a very little twitch that your cat deliberately does. If your cat twitches when awake, though, you should be concerned. Twitching is a common symptom of involuntary muscular trembling. This can be caused by irritants or mental discomfort, but it can also be caused by a hereditary health condition. Twitching when awake can sometimes be a sign of a more serious health problem. Nervous system illnesses, low calcium levels, poisoning, renal problems, electrolyte abnormalities, and even rabies are all possibilities.
The veterinarian is the best person to consult in this situation. Your cat’s vet will conduct tests and examinations to identify the real cause of involuntary twitching.
What do cats fantasize about?
Cats sleep for around 16 hours every day. That’s over a quarter of their life!
Of course, not all of this is REM sleep, but a significant amount of it is.
For obvious reasons, the contents of human and feline dreams will differ substantially. Dreams usually mirror our daily lives as our brain analyzes what we experienced throughout the day, and it’s not uncommon for some of those events to seep down into your dreams, including your cat’s.
Obviously, there’s no way to know for sure, but chances are your feline companion is happy hunting mice or reclining with piles of catnip as it sleeps.
Don’t be alarmed if your cat twitches a bit while sleeping in your lap. It’s completely normal and healthy! Consider yourself fortunate that she is comfortable enough in your arms to fall asleep dreaming of chasing butterflies and pouncing on toys. Enjoy the moment, try not to shout “Aww!” too loudly, and be grateful for the wonderful fluffball you have in your life.
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