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How Can My Cat Tell When I Wake Up? 8 Signs They Watch For

Nicole Cosgrove Profile Picture

By Nicole Cosgrove

cat waking up his owner

It is common knowledge that cats have an uncanny ability to know when their owners are awake and ready to play. In fact, many cat owners find it amusing how quickly their pets can tell when they wake up in the morning. But how do cats know when you wake up? Let’s find out in this article.

The 8 Ways Cats Can Tell You’re Awake

1. Sight

Cats rely on multiple senses to detect when their owners wake up. The first sense cats use is sight. Cats have excellent vision and can detect subtle changes in the environment such as movement. Additionally, cats are sensitive to light levels, so they can tell when a light turns on or off.

2. Sound

The second sense cats use is sound. They have an excellent sense of hearing that allows them to pick up even the slightest noises, such as rustling sheets or footsteps on the floor. They can even hear changes in your breathing that indicate that you are awake or in the process of waking up.

woman looking at the cat sleeping
Image Credit: Carlos G. Lopez, Shutterstock

3. Smell

Cats are adept at picking up smells associated with waking humans, such as body odor or breakfast cooking in the kitchen. As you wake up more and breathe more, your cat can even smell your morning breath!

4. Vibration

Cats also have a remarkable ability to detect vibration, which helps them know when you are awake. When you move around in your bed, the vibrations can be felt by cats through their paws and whiskers if they are close to you when you are waking.

Cat waking up its owner sleeping in bed
Image Credit: Kasefoto, Shutterstock

5. Other Cues

Cats also take cues from their owners’ body language and behavior. For example, if you start talking to your cat as soon as you wake up or pet them, they will know that you are awake. When you yawn or stretch, they can tell you are waking up. Cats have even been known to follow the smell of coffee in the morning!

6. Monitoring Your Schedule

Cats also pay close attention to their owner’s schedule and routine in order to predict when they will be getting out of bed. For example, if a cat knows that its owner usually wakes up between 7 and 8 AM every morning, then it can start monitoring the environment for signs that occur each morning around this time, even if they can’t actually tell time. Additionally, cats can recognize patterns in their owners’ behavior that indicate it is almost time to wake up. This could be anything from stretching or yawning to turning over in bed.

ginger cat with the owner
Image Credit: Yuriy Seleznev, Shutterstock

7. Paying Attention to Their Appetites

Cats are also excellent at remembering when it’s breakfast time, especially if they are feeling hungry and get fed at the same time every morning. Your cat can start anticipating breakfast and become restless in anticipation waiting on you to wake up to feed them, but they know if they start feeling hungry at a certain time each morning that you will be waking up soon to feed them.

8. Noticing When the Sun Rises

Cats also use the position of the sun to determine when it’s time to wake up. As soon as the sun rises and natural light enters their owner’s bedroom, cats will perk up and start anticipating playtime or breakfast because they know you’re going to wake up soon.

Blind tabby cat lies on a windowsill
Image Credit: Jana Shnipelson, Unsplash

What If I Don’t Want My Cat to Wake Me Up?

Unfortunately, it is difficult to completely stop your cat from waking you up. However, if you want to reduce the chances of this happening, try to keep a consistent sleep schedule and minimize noises and smells that could trigger your cat’s wake-up routine. Additionally, you can try to give your cat plenty of attention before bedtime so that it is less likely to be looking for attention when you wake up. Consider getting blackout curtains for your bedroom, so the sun won’t trigger your cat’s wakefulness.

Are Some Cats Better at Detecting When Their Owners Are Waking Up Than Others?

Yes, some cats are more sensitive to changes in the environment and can detect even the slightest disturbance. These cats will usually have a better ability to tell when their owners are waking up. On the other hand, some cats may be less observant and take a bit more time to recognize that their owners are waking up.

cat rubbing its head against the owner's legs
Image Credit: Jaromir Chalabala, Shutterstock

Does My Cat Know When I’m Going to Bed?

Yes, cats are very attuned to changes in the environment and can often pick up on cues that indicate you are getting ready to go to sleep. For example, if you start winding down your day by turning off the lights or changing into pajamas, your cat is likely to pick up on these cues and may start getting ready for bed as well.

Does My Cat Know When I’m Sleeping?

If your cat notices that you have stopped moving or talking, it can usually tell that you are asleep. Additionally, cats are able to detect subtle changes in your breathing and body temperature, so if these indicate that you are asleep, then your cat will be able to tell.

Can Cats Tell When Their Owners Are Dreaming?

Cats may be able to pick up on subtle changes in their owners’ body language or behavior during dreaming, such as a decrease in breathing rate. However, it is not proven that cats are able to determine when their owners are dreaming specifically. It’s more likely that cats simply know when something is off with their humans and investigate accordingly.

Cat laying on owner's chest
Image Credit: Maliflower73, Shutterstock

Are Cats Active at Night?

Yes, some cats are more active at night than during the day. However, some cats may be more active during the day, depending on their individual preferences. So, it’s important to pay attention to your cat’s behavior and find out what works best for them.

How Long Do Cats Sleep?

Cats typically sleep between 12 and 16 hours per day, although they may take naps throughout the day as well. Cats are crepuscular animals, meaning that they are most active at dawn and dusk, but can be awake or asleep any time of the day. Additionally, cats tend to adjust their sleeping habits to match their owners’ routines so that they can be around when their humans need them.

Final Thoughts

Overall, cats are incredibly observant animals that are able to pick up on even the slightest changes in the environment. They have an excellent ability to recognize when their owners wake up, whether it’s due to movement, sound, or even smell. By understanding their behavior and providing plenty of love and attention, cat owners can ensure that they have a happy and healthy bond with their furry friends!

Featured Image Credit: Billion Photos, Shutterstock

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